Monday, January 21, 2013

Nekkid Lampshades

I pulled out a dusty To-Do list from several years ago & finally checked something off it.
Not really. But, seriously, I have had this project in my head for a VERY long time & I finally decided to make it happen. I've collected a few vintage lampshades at thrift stores over the years, & happened to have some leftover light kits from a previous Crafty Night project. So, I got out a few tools & created this hanging nekkid vintage lampshade installation in my living room.
(I'm kicking myself at not doing it sooner–it was so stinkin' easy!!)

These next groups of photos show you the step-by-step to putting it all together...

•Remove fabric from lampshade. Be sure the shade is the style that will hang properly from a pendant light kit. (The style with the spider/harp fittings work best.)
•Here is the light kit. I purchased mine through a seller on But I also lived in a small town so I didn't have access to shops that may carry light kits. Hobby Lobby? Pier 1 Imports?
•Unscrew the base of the light kit.
•Inside are two screws holding down the wires. Unscrew those to release the wires.

•The wires are knotted.
•Unknot the wires & slide the base off.
•Slip the wires through the top hole in your lampshade.
•Slide the base back on.

•Knot the wires back together.
•Slide the end of the wires back through the metal holes & tighten the screws to hold the wires in place.
•Put it all back together by screwing the base cap back on the light fixture.
•And, you're done!

•To hang the lampshades from the ceiling, you'll need screw anchors (sometimes called "wall plugs"). First, determine where you'd like to hang the lampshade. Then, drill a hole in the ceiling a tiny bit smaller than your screw anchor. (The screw anchor is used to help support the weight of an object in materials that might be weak or brittle, like drywall. Once the screw is tightened into the anchor, the anchor expands, wedging it firmly into place. And, thank you Wikipedia.)
•Tap the screw anchor gently into the drilled hole with a hammer.
•Screw your hook into the anchor.
•Now you have a tight, snug hook, ready to hang your lampshade!

•Now that your lampshades are hung, you'll need to get the cords out of the way. Swoop them all together into the nearest corner of the room. I hammered a little nail into the corner of the ceiling to keep them all together. But you could also screw another hook in the corner & drape the excess cords through it.
•View of the lampshades looking up.
•Lampshades without a fabric covering require a softer bulb, so it doesn't feel like you're looking into the sun. I currently have 40watt, because that's all I had on hand. But I plan on heading out tomorrow to grab some softer wattage.
•Pazely takes advantage of the new reading corner. The girls cannot get enough of hanging out there!

Although I do think I would like a couple more shades hanging in that corner, I am so excited that it's done! I haven't done anything home decor-ish in SUCH a long time. It was fun to play dress-up with my house. 

Bonus: The Mr. thinks the lampshades are cool.


  1. Love your lampshades. We have a lampshade and an exposed bulb in our kitchen and we went to the added expense of getting an interesting light bulb. I don't know what is available in your area, but we found bulbs that have clear glass, so you can see the filament inside. It looks pretty cool, even when it isn't lit. I believe you can get them at places like Restoration Hardware, they're called Edison-style bulbs. Anyway...any bulb will work...but I just thought I'd throw in my 2 cents! Cheers.

    1. I just told the Mr. last night that I want to try to find a clear round bulb. We don't have fancy schmancy stores around here, but I'm still gonna check the Home-Depot-ish type stores & cross my fingers that they carry something interesting. I didn't know they were called "Edison-style". That might help--thanks!!

  2. Congrats on checking something off that "list." You have inspired me to perhaps hang a few pics this weekend in our house- pics that we have been needing to hang for over three years now...*sigh*...

  3. I saw these on Instagram and I LOVE them! They turned out fantastic. We've been trying to come up with cooler lighting in our house, and I'm going to show this to my husband.

    Also, don't you mean "undress-up" your house? haha!

    1. Haha! Yes, I suppose "nekkid" would imply the opposite of dressing.

  4. These look great!! You might also check Home Depot/Lowe's for light kits, that's where I got mine.

  5. These are awesome, great job!

  6. Wow! They look lovely. You are smart. Thanks for this beautiful blog.


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