Moroccan Lamp Shade

7 Materials
3 Hours

I had a star paper lamp that ripped recently so I needed a new shade to cover it and thought why not make one? I used an old punching technique (much like those used in old tin lanterns) and went to town making a fun moroccan design for a new shade. This shade is super simple! You just punch the design of your choice into a piece of paper and then wrap it around some lamp rings. Add a touch of glue and ribbon and you are done!
Look at all those beautiful shapes cast on the wall! I think it would perhaps be fun to punch words into the shade and see them cast on the wall! I might have to give it a go!
SUPPLIES: -Piece of Black Paper (or color of your choice) -Printed Pattern / Graphic -Piece of Foam -Lamp Rings (Bottom / Top Clamp Ring) -2" Ribbon) -Clips / Clamps -Glue -Paintbrush -Pencil -Punching Tools in varying sizes (I used a seam ripper and a knitting needle) -Lamp Base (Not Pictured) -Cutter / Scissors (Not Pictured)

STEP 1: Cut your paper to the height of your choice and at a length that is long enough to wrap around your lamp rings with an inch or so extra so that the ends of the paper overlap when wrapped around the rings.
STEP 2: Grab your foam, piece of black paper, and print out design and layer them in that order. Tape your printed design on top of your paper so that it doesn't move and punch holes through the outline of the design you chose. I used a knitting needle to make larger holes and a seam ripper to make smaller ones. You can print out an image that is as large as your sheet of paper or you can simply move your image over after making the holes needed making sure to keep a seamless pattern.
STEP 3: Once you are done punching all the holes into your paper grab your top lamp ring. Wrap the top ring with the paper and clip it in place.
STEP 4: Using a pencil mark where the paper overlaps on both the inside and outside of the shade.
STEP 5: Remove the shade from the lamp ring. Paint a small line of glue on the end of the paper and roll the shade back so that the lines you drew in step 4 line up. Press the shade closed.
STEP 6: Clamp the ends of the paper edges together and allow the glue to dry. While the glue is drying use the paper shade shape to measure out how long your ribbon should be. Run it along the edge of the top of the shade and wrap it all the way around and add an inch as you will need a bit extra in a future step. Cut out 2 ribbons in the same length. (one for the top and one for the bottom)
STEP 7: Once your paper ends have dried and are fully glued together it's time to attach the lamp rings to the insides of the shade. First, paint a thin line of glue around the top rim of the cylinder.
STEP 8: Feed the clamp (top) ring into the cylinder shade and press it against the line of glue made in step 7. Clamp the ring and paper together so that it can dry completely. Once it is dry repeat the process with the bottom of the shade and the plain lamp ring.
STEP 9: Once all the glue has dried and the rings are fully attached it is time to finish the edges with some ribbon. First you will need to paint a small line of glue to the end of the ribbon and fold it over about 1/4" or so and hold it in place until it dries. I just clamped it to help make sure it was extra secure.
STEP 10: Now take your ribbon and attach it to the upper edge of your lampshade. You will first line up the folded over edge of the ribbon with the edge of the paper and paint a line of glue on the lower half of the ribbon about 2-3" over. Press the ribbon onto the edge so that half of it sticks over the edge and the other half rests against the paper and pin it in place. Repeat this until the entire ribbon has been attached around the top. (*When you get to the end if you have cut the ribbon far too long cut off a bit of the excess. Then apply a line of glue to the end and fold over whatever excess is left just as you did in step 9 and then glue it down so that the end meets the other end of the ribbon that is already attached) Once the lower half of the ribbon has dried you need to fold over the upper half and glue it down to the inside of the shade. You will paint a small line of glue for about 2-3" and press it down and pin it in place in the same manner as you did for the lower half of the ribbon. Allow it to dry. Repeat the same process for the bottom of the lamp with your second cut ribbon.
STEP 11: At this point your lampshade is complete and just needs to be attached to your lamp. If you have a clamp ring like I do just open the clamp and squeeze the bulb into place.
It looks like a pretty standard lamp at first glance, but when you turn it on it is truly in all it's glory!
When I took this picture it was pretty bright in the room, but I can't wait to shine this thing when it's super dark!
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Have a question about this project?

3 of 11 questions
  • Melanie Shearman
    on Feb 1, 2018

    i have a flat ceiling fixture that I want to spruce up. I can’t replace the cover or the fixture. Any ideas? Oh it needs to be easily removed. The landlord won’t look to kindly on anything that takes more than two minutes to remove
    • Beth Cain
      on Sep 14, 2018

      and Use a piece of flashing - you can get 12" flashing at almost any hardware store. Do the paper and foam like above but use a nail to punch the holes. finish the edges with aluminum tape, punch a hole in the center. Take the finial out (the screw that holds the fixture shade in place) then attach he flashing under the existing shade with the finial screw.

  • Gloria Salmanowitz
    on Feb 1, 2018

    Is there a danger in the fact that its paper? Is there a possibility of this being able to catch on fire with the heat of the bulb if left on too long?
    • MK McDonald
      on Oct 28, 2018

      Seriously, take a look around at lampshades at stores, etc. Most are a form of paper or cardboard, even plastic, god forbid. A cheap 3$ lampshade or even the ones in your own home from Walmart is no more fireproof than any other options. Just how hot does your light bulb get? I mean everyone at this point should be using LED bulbs by now, of which a lot don’t get as hot as an old incandescent bulb.

  • Maureen Barringer
    on Feb 2, 2018

    can you use the plastic sheets that are already curt out & do the same to make the shade??? can you paint the plastic sheets also???

Join the conversation

2 of 50 comments
  • Joline Cosman
    on Jun 19, 2018

    Looks fairly easy and fun !!! Good idea. Have seen a few with CITY SCAPES. Like the edge finished, too !!

    Advise ? If you do lettering, it must be backwards when looking at the shade, but will be correct on the wall. Lol.

    Nice !!!

  • M-E
    on Apr 21, 2019

    I have made tin lanterns before with kids. Make sure when attacking to lampshade rings that the punching lines up so holes are poked from the inside out, as that is what lets the light out better.

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