Thursday, April 18, 2013

Inexpensive Black Lamp Shades

I love black lamp shades best, but seriously, who wants to pay $50-100 for a largish drum shade? Not I. The good news is these $16 white shades from Target take paint really well.

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I was in a time crunch, and didn't have the right black spray paint on hand (like I thought I did), so I sprayed the shades with oil-rubbed bronze paint first, which made it really easy to cover the inside of the shade well.

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The spray paint worked on the outer fabric wrap too, but it was a little trickier to get the saturation  just right. 

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I did a light sanding after the spray paint dried, just to get any of the loose stuff off and and to smooth out drips. And then I lightly brushed on some black screen printing paint, which I'm learning is the best type of fabric paint around.

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And I ended with a final light sanding.

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It ended up being a lucky surprise how much I like the way the oil-rubbed bronze and the matte black paint finishes work together! Not at all sparkly like oil-rubbed bronze paint can sometimes be, but just enough of a sheen to look nice and, well, not spray painted. :)

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Besides the obvious cost savings, fabric shades are much more durable. Paper shades start to show their wear after a couple years of being in a house with kids and moving a few times. And I think these look almost as good in person as a $120 shade from Just Shades (my favorite splurge shade source).