Learn How Easy Its is to Upcycle Lampshades With Wallpaper

3 Materials
15 Minutes
A couple of weeks ago I revamped my stairs with wallpaper . To complete the look I decided to use the leftover wallpaper to revamp my lampshades in the hallway too. Now my lampshades match my stairs, how cool is that !
Wallpaper comes in so many great designs and patterns, it is an affordable way to get a unique designer look. These lampshades have been upcycled with Orla Kiely and Marimekko wallpaper. The hardest thing about this project is deciding what wallpaper to use.

Click here to see my many other fantastic wallpaper upcycles.
Choose your wallpaper carefully, you want to make sure that the pattern is right for the lampshade. Smaller patterns are better, and think about the direction of the pattern. A roll of wallpaper will not be wide enough to fit round your shade widthwise. Therefore you will be cutting the wallpaper longways, (unless you don’t mind having more than one join on your lampshade). If cutting the wallpaper lengthwise as recommended, you will usually need a piece about 1.5meters long.
Measure both the circumference and the height of your lampshade. Add about 5mm-10mm to the circumference, to allow for a small overlap. You will be wrapping the wallpaper over the top and bottom wire ring of the wallpaper so you will want to allow for an overlap of approximately 7mm either side (14mm in total).

Then cut your wallpaper to size, whilst taking into account how the pattern will look once on the shade. Lucky for me the Marimekko Unikko wallpaper I had used on the stairs was perfect for the lampshades. The pattern was small and it didn’t matter which way up it went.
Stick double sided tape to the top and bottom rim of the lampshade. You want to stick the tape so that you can fold it over the wire rim, so half the tape is on the outside of the lampshade and the rest is on the inside rim.
Lay out your cut wallpaper. Roll up the wallpaper round the shade. It should stick to the sticky tape. Also join the 2 ends with sticky tape.
Finally wrap the top and bottom wallpaper overlap round the wire frame. This should stick, depending on the quality of your double sided tape. If struggling, you can always use a bit of glue to help it along.
I love that my lampshades now match my stairs. If you have a cone shaped lampshade you will need to use a slightly different method, see my blog below for details.
If you have a cone shaped lampshade you will need to use a slightly different method, see my blog below for details.

As well as using wallpaper to revamp an old lampshade I have also used spray paints, which are great when you have a lampshade that is a bit more of an unusual shape. Click here to see my colourful lamp transformation.
Suggested materials:
  • Wallpaper about 1.5 - 2meters
  • Double sided sticky tape
  • Rotary cutter and mat
Claire at Pillarboxblue
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 9 questions
  • Suzanne Sparks Suzanne Sparks on Aug 04, 2018

    I love the look of wallpaper on the stairs & the lampshades! Does wallpaper wear well on the stairs?

  • Sue33792677 Sue33792677 on Aug 07, 2018

    how the heck do u wallpaper ur stairs ???

  • Diane Diane on Aug 10, 2018

    Where do you get leftover wallpaper scraps?

Join the conversation
2 of 41 comments
  • Carol Carol on Jun 15, 2020

    Love it!

  • Joanie Joanie on Dec 16, 2020

    I think everything looks fine. What do I love? THAT little doggy at the top of the stairs......he is so precious!! Hugs, Hugs for him.