There are simple things I realize that I’ve loved without even me knowing. Things that make a room look better, more interesting but they aren’t obvious. One of these incredible, life-changing, total home revolutionizing things is…. the lampshade. When I first proposed a lampshade post to my crew they were like, ‘Wow… Really riveting stuff, Henderson‘. But I felt strongly that people need to know how simple it is to add more contrast and interest by replacing your lampshade with one that has either color, texture or very carefully selected pattern. Perhaps I should start a non-profit, something to give a voice to all the statement making shades to help all boring lighting rise to their potential!
Black lampshades are less intimidating, but still wildly change the look of the lamp and the room. Nate Berkus knows this (he designed that space, above and below). They have been more oft-used, and I do love them a lot. They instantly modernize a lamp. Picture those rooms with white shades – less interesting, right?
But the colored shade is less widely utilized and I’m here to say that when done right, a shade in a good color is such a good thing. Believe me when I say that photos of this done well were hard to find, but we found some. When looking at these photos, picture those shades white and then you’ll understand how much of a difference that shade can make in a room.
For this weekend makeover, below, we actually painted that fabric shade blue.
We used house paint, and brushed it on in an hour. We all LOVED how much it changed the lamp instantly.
As you know, I’ve had these two Schoolhouse Electric lamps forever and they look so good in every single room in which I place them. And believe me, there were a lot of rooms.
So as you can see, while I love the simplicity of the lamp, if they had just donned white paper shades, they wouldn’t have nearly the impact in the room.
As a clear advocate of a more special shade, we rounded up where you can buy colorful, textured and patterned (gasp!) lampshades.
*Note: The prices are obviously based on size and each lamp needs a different size so be sure to order the size you think your lamp needs.
1. Navy Drum Lamp Shade | 2. Red Lamp Shade | 3. Dark Green Lamp Shade | 4. Gold Lamp Shade | 5. Spice Drum Lamp Shade | 6. Ollsta Shade | 7. Metal Drum Shade | 8. Fuchsia Burlap Shade | 9. Apricot Empire Lamp Shade | 10. Lime Green Lamp Shade | 11. Parker Shade | 12. Light Pink Lamp Shade | 13. Bradford Jute Shade | 14. Vivian Shade | 15. Mint Green Shade | 16. Olive Green Burlap Lamp Shade | 17. Tangerine Burlap Lamp Shade | 18. Aqua Linen Shade
If you aren’t prone to bringing a color, then consider a texture. It was super hard to find good images of this but I feel confidant that a great textured shade can add so much warmth, regardless of color.
I have a couple of these pleated shades, below as pleats are back, folks.
1. Woven Lamp Shade | 2. Chambray Woven Lamp Shade | 3. Mini Pleat Linen Lamp Shade | 4. Ribbon Trim Lamp Shade | 5. Gray Knife Pleat Linen Shade | 6. Burlap Lamp Shade | 7. Twine Wrapped Lamp Shade | 8. Modern Linen Pleat Lamp Shade | 9. Cream with Tan Weave Shade | 10. Blue Stripe Linen Lamp Shade | 11. Gold Textured Lamp Shade | 12. French Knot Shade
Patterned shades are typically done badly – too bold, too trendy, too ‘LOOK AT ME’. But we found some that we liked a lot (I really want that sweet pink and white victorian one for Birdie’s room).
1. Gray Herringbone Lamp Shade | 2. Jurdan Lamp Shade | 3. Indigo Embroidered Lamp Shade | 4. Murdock Lamp Shade | 5. Feathered Chevron Lamp Shade | 6. Sketched Safari Lamp Shade | 7. Habitat Lamp Shade | 8. Pink Striped Lamp Shade | 9. Black and White Floral Lamp Shade
The last shade category that you will probably be the most into into is an upgraded neutral shade – one that is darker or more interesting than your average white, but still safe and timeless.
I have had this (below) lamp for years, with a flax/oatmeal shade and the warmth it brings, both with light and color is actually huge in a room:
I had it through a variety of iterations in our last house:
Lots of iterations in the old home.
And of course it was one of the few things that I wouldn’t sell to the new owner of our old house (because it is unavailable anymore).
If that shade were white it would not garner nearly enough subtle attention. White shades are a missed opportunity (often). At least getting a neutral color or textured shade can really elevate any lamp and room. And don’t forget the shape of the shade (which deserves a whole other post). Rectangle, square and tapered are good options when you get bored of that same-sided drum.
1. Textured Rounded Square Lamp Shade | 2. Linen Cotton Slope Lamp Shade | 3. Gray Herringbone Lamp Shade | 4. Linen Empire Lamp Shade | 5. Rullan Lamp Shade | 6. Black Drum Lamp Shade | 7. Oatmeal Drum Lamp Shade | 8. Square Lamp Shade | 9. Gray Linen Lamp Shade | 10. Wide Trim Textured Lamp Shade | 11. Black Drum Lamp Shade | 12. Textured Linen Shade | 13. Textured Lamp Shade | 14. Bradford Jute Lamp Shade | 15. Linen Lamp shade | 16. Black Square Lamp Shade | 17. Denim Lamp Shade | 18. Straight Sided Linen Lamp Shade
There you go. There are a million options out there. So this weekend when you are choosing which garnishes to put in your bloody mary, or whether you should or shouldn’t start The Keepers, I want you to stare at your lampshades and ask them the question that we should be asking ourselves every day – are you your best shade you can be? Could you be more interesting? What if you were a bold color?
Important questions for all lampshades and human beings living on this here earth now. If they are white paper … think about an upgrade.
Are you into this idea? Have you gone down the route of the colored shade? And if any of you have any lampshades with great patterns that we missed please put the link in profile.
*Fun fact about me, as a child I recovered MANY a thrifted victorian lampshade with floral printed fabric. Some were, as you can imagine, TERRIBLE, but I remember one (where I added fringe) that I would absolutely own now. My inner granny has been inside me for decades …