How to Cover a Lampshade Frame with Fabric: Step by Step

Throwing away a faded, tired, and damaged lampshade and get a new one is not a wise idea when you simply can re-cover the frame with new fabric. It will make the lampshade new again by giving it a fresh look. Since lampshades come in different shapes and sizes, covering the frame requires some technique. So, it is important to know how to cover a lampshade frame with fabric.

How to Cover a Lampshade Frame with Fabric

Certainly, there are some crucial steps for getting this job done. Making the paper pattern, however, is the most crucial move before cutting the fabric. To have an elegant and well-crafted lampshade beside your bed, you don’t have to be professional. So, let’s get to know how can you achieve this art in you and reflect it on your lampshade.

What Fabric Material Should Your Use to Cover a Lampshade Frame?

For covering a lampshade frame, you should pick the right type of fabric. The fabric material should be strong, high in quality, and lightweight.

Therefore, most people go for a piece of cotton fabric to cover their lampshade. It is a popular fabric that allows easy draping capability. The fabric also gathers very well and it is easy to clean. Thus, soft-touch cotton is the best choice to cover a lampshade frame.

Additionally, many people select linen fabric for its endless variety of prints and designs. Nonetheless, cotton offers the same as well. So, choose a fabric that has the right color, shade, design, and print and that enhances the beauty of your whole room.

How to Cover a Lampshade Frame with Fabric – Get a Complete Guideline

We will provide you a complete guideline regarding this topic. For that, first, let’ get to know what materials you should collect to get started with the project.

Tools & Materials Required:

  • Lampshade
  • Cotton tape
  • Bordering trim
  • Scissor
  • Sewing needle
  • Fabric material for lining and covering
  • Fabric chalk or pen (not the permanent one)
  • Pencil
  • Fabric glue
  • Paintbrush

All these materials are easily available. So, get the list and grab every material. Now, let’s get to the main procedure step by step when you have all the required materials.

Step 1: Is the Lampshade Frame Ready?

Separate the old and damaged lampshade fabric from the frame. Cutting the fabric with scissors will make it easier. You can pull off the rest of the fabrics remaining on the frame.

Remember that most of the lampshade frames come with metal construction. Therefore, you certainly cannot cover the shade by sewing it. First, you need to manage a base to make that work.

  1. For this, you will need cotton tape. Now, cover the upper rim and base rim of the lampshade frame with the cotton tape thoroughly.
  2. For better starting, you can choose a strut joint. Wrap up the strut around with the tapenot sparing even an inch. This is how you need to prepare the lampshade.
  3. While wrapping up make sure the bindings on the frame get imposed tightly. It will allow easy gluing or sewing of the fabric on it. So, if you do not feel secure wrapping with a single layer of cotton tape, then get a double layer.

Step 2: Make Paper Pattern

This part is important and it requires some techniques. You can take a newspaper or a large sheet of paper for this purpose.

  1. Spread the large sheet on a table that has an even and flat surface.
  2. Now, place the frame on the sheet or newspaper lying on its side. Keep rolling the frame and make marks of the shade top and bottom with a pen.
  3. Also, mark the beginning point and the end point where the frame stops after one complete roll.
  4. That is how you make a paper pattern from the lampshade frame.Cut out the marked lines from the paper pattern with scissors.

Step 3: Prepare the Fabric

Before you cut the fabric into pieces, make sure you wash it. Wash the fabric with laundry soap and then let it dry. When the fabric dries, iron it so that it does not have any wrinkles on it. This way, cutting the fabric would be easier.

  1. When your fabric is ready after wash, spread it on a flat surface. Place the paper pattern on top of it.
  2. Get some straight pins and pin the pattern and the fabric together so that they don’t get displaced.
  3. Make marks on the fabric with fabric chalk. Make sure you mark it at least two inches past the above and below the edges of the paper pattern.
  4. When you are done marking properly, cut the pieces with scissors.

Step 4: Make Fabric Ready for the Lampshade Frame

If you have cut the fabric with proper measurement then placing the fabric cover over the frame would not be a tough task. It will fit the frame perfectly. Now, wrap the fabric around the frame. The extra two inches of fabric will be used for overlap.

However, it is a better idea if you use a new seam of fabric instead of the existing seam. It will offer a perfect finished result.

Step 5: Glue the Frame

Prepare glue for gluing purposes. You can use a glue gun.

  1. Plug the gun for about five minutes to warm up. Run a glue line over the new or existing fabric seam and inside the shade’s top edge.
  2. Set the top cut of the fabric against the lampshade frame. Press it keeping about half an inch of fabric into the glue and over the frame.

You can use clean-release tape to secure the end. Now, let the glue dry. It will barely take half or one hour to dry fully.

Step 6: Wrap the Fabric

Wrap fabric around the shade holding its loose end. Do the process snugly. Overlap the glued end with fabric. Like the top edge, do for the bottom edge as well by attaching the fabric.

While doing this method keep stretching the fabric tightly so that it does not wrinkle and you get a seamless fabric cover.

To deal with the excess fabric you can seal it temporarily using clean-release tape. It will not allow the shifting of the fabric.

Step 7: Mark along the Folding Line

Mark the line where the fabric is about to fold. The excess fabric on the top edge of the shade needs to fold inside the frame.

For marking the line, use a temporary fabric pen. It is better to start with the end of the top side of the lampshade frame. After that, you can go for the bottom end of it.

Mark the fabric carefully. If you feel there is excess fabric, you can remove it by cutting. Cut roughly half-inch only beyond the line you have drawn with a fabric pen.

Step 8: Tuck the Fabric Edges inside the Shade

Fold the cut fabric to create a clean edge.

  1. Fold it under half an inch and make sure the edge is clean and even. Now, insert the edge between the shade and fabric. The inserting process might be a bit tricky. You can use a sewing needle or toothpick for this purpose.
  2. Make sure the amount of fabric that is folded under has a consistent edge. Check its finished seam; it indicates an even fabric folded under.
  3. When you are done inserting the edge of the fabric, it is time to glue it. Choose fabric glue that is featured with a thin bead. Run the glue between the shade and folded fabric edge.
  4. Do not press so much glue that it comes out of the place. After applying glue, press the fabric to the shade firmly. Repeat the same process for doing the bottom side of the frame.

Step 9: Take Care of the Side Seam

Do not forget to take care of the side seam. It needs to have a great finish as well like the top and bottom side of the shade. Remember, you used tape to hold the fabric in place on the side seam.

It is time to remove the tape. Remove it and cut under a half-inch again to create a secured and finished edge. Use glue to secure it properly. Apply it underneath the finished edge. Then press it onto the shade firmly.

Step 10: Give the Finishing Touch

This step is the last but not least. Brush the extra glue from the side seam, top edge, and bottom edge of the lampshade frame. Covering and embellishing with some ribbon you can do this beautifully. The ribbon will cover the unexpected sight of the glue.

Use the ribbon around the shade back and its seam. Create a finished edge of the ribbon ends as well. Fold them under the shade and attach them with glue. Then, finally, you get the finish of your lampshade that you have desired.

Read Next: Full Guide on Covering Fluorescent Lights with Fabric

Is It Safe to Cover a Lampshade with Fabric?

There is no harm to cover your lampshade with fabric. Moreover, the process offers you so many advantages.

Adding a fabric cover keeps safe your lampshade. It protects the shade from various damages. Consequently, your beautiful lampshade stays good and well-organized for a longer time.

If you can choose the fabric matching other elements of your room, it ultimately enhances the overall look. Covering the lampshade with the right fabric materials is actually a way to show your elegant penchant.

So, make sure you choose the ideal fabric that is not only strong and made of quality materials; that should be also excellent to look at in your room.

Final Verdict

Now that you know the best way to cover a lampshade with fabric, you must be confident enough to give it a try. Well, following the above steps will guide you to achieve the exact result that you want for your lampshade.

Nonetheless, it is a simple DIY task that only requires patience. Also, complete every step very carefully. You should attempt to have a great finish of the shade cover. Remember, the better the finish, the greater the shade illuminates.

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