This is the final part of the ‘How I make felted lampshades’ series. If you missed stages 1 and 2 you can find these on the links below:
There are instructions that come in the lampshade making kits, but they are for thin fabric, so I have included some tips for making them with felt.
- With your felt laid out decoration side down you want to remove the sticky backing from the lampshade panel and stick this down on your felt. Press down firmly. If you are doing a landscape you’ll want to make sure your horizon is going to line up. You’ll notice in photo 1 I have trimmed the edge on the right side, you want to do the same on the left. Top tip – you’ll want to have a little bit extra fabric at one end and either side of that edge. This is best seen on photo 7. This is because when you fold it over the outer piece of felt has to get over the first piece, not such an issue with thin fabric.
- With both edges trimmed you are then ready to snap and remove the edging strips of the lampshade panel. These are pre-scored so you carefully remove and that leaves you with 2 neat edges of felt on either side.
- On the end where you left a little extra fabric, you’ll want to apply some double sided tape and secure that down.
- On top of that folded edge, apply another strip of double sided tape.
- Apply double sided sticky tape to the outer edges of the two rings.
- With the short edge that doesn’t have the folded over edge nearest you, you want to start to attach the two rings at the same time as each other. The rings attach to the edge of the panel, not the fabric. NB. Remember if you want a table lamp or floor lamp shade you want the ring with the bulb setting on the grass side, if you want a hanging pendant lampshade then have that on the sky side. Make sure the bulb ring is pointing towards the centre. Sounds obvious but I know someone who did it the wrong way and it was very tricky to fix. You keep rolling the two rings. Then remove the backing on the tape at the end and press down on the join. Top tip – make sure the three cross bars on the bulb side are not where your join is going to be. (See image 7.)
- You’ll see for the example I have shown I have done a table/floor lamp setting with the bulb ring at the bottom. Notice the bars are away from the join and see the little extra fabric on the outer edge of the join.
- You’ll want to snip into the fabric where the cross bars are, to be able to fold in smoothly on either side. This is why it is best not to have the bars where the main join is. You now use the little plastic tool to tuck in the edges of the shade over the ring and tucked well under so the sticky tape holds it. This process is easier on larger shades and can be very tricky on the smaller shades of 20cm diameter and smaller. I also find it quite painful on my hands and would be a real challenge for anyone with joint pain or arthritis.
- That’s it, finished! It probably sounds simple but it can be tricky and is pretty time consuming.
On this particular shade I washed, combed, dyed and carded the wool, then did the felting and construction of the shade.