Lampshade Makeover using Jewelry Beads (Tutorial)

Hello and Good morning to ya'll!!!
Today I am excited to share with you a project I just completed using beads from a company called House of Gems

Here's my back story...About 3 years ago I purchased these two lamps at a "Going out of Business" sale down in Peddler's Village Pa. for only $12 each. I thought the pretty glass base paired with the uniquely shaped lampshade had a very feminine look and would be perfect for my daughter Grace's bedroom. 

And they did look good but over the past year or so that ruffled ribbon in the middle of the lampshade discolored and had begun to peel off, leaving the lamps looking kind of sad.

So when the people from House of Gems contacted me about doing a DIY project with their product, I thought long and hard as to what I would want to create. Then I remembered those pretty lampshades with that yucky yellow ribbon and decided it would be nice to replace it with something bright and cheerful, and would coordinate well with the colors in Grace's bedroom.

Enlisting the help of my college roommate Janet (who just happens to know a whole lot about jewelry making and working with beads) together we created an entire new look for these two lampshades. 

First Janet carefully peeled of the the old ribbon from the middle of  one of the lampshades.

We thought the choice of pretty sparkling and colorful beads from House of Gems  would be the perfect compliment to the shimmery fabric of the lampshade. Seven different beads were selected to create the look. 

3 strands of spray painted beads. One in hot pink, one in turquoise and one in green & black
Two strands of rodelle faceted glass beads
5 strands of Chinese crystal dark cyan color faceted teardrop beads
6 strands of Chinese crystal pink & green color faceted teardrop beads
8 corrugated sterling silver round beads

The first thing we did with the beads was to divided them and place them into plastic bags, one bag for each lampshade.

Then using some stainless steel beading wire from House of Gems, we began to prepare it for the stringing of our beads. In addition to the wire we will also needed crimping tubes and two wire guardians plus a crimping tool, a couple of jump rings and a bead stopper or two.

The circumference of the cinched part of the lampshade roughly measured 25 inches and we thought it would look nice if we went around the middle three times. So 75 inches was measured off plus a few more inches to spare, of the bead wire. 

The wire was first thread through one crimp tube and then through the wire guardian and back into the crimp tube. Then using the crimping tool we crimped the tube.

How to use the crimping tool.

Once the wire guard and crimping tube were in place we began to thread on our beads.

When we reached the end of beading our strand, the bead stopper was clamped on so to measure the strand around the lamp to make sure it is long enough. (If it is too long remove a few beads, if too short add a few.) We knew we were going to be adding a jump ring to each end so we had to take that into account as part of the length of our strand. We did want it to be a little bit on the snug side.

Next we wrapped the strand around the lampshade and then threaded the ribbon through the jump rings. I chose three different colored ribbon to coordinate with the beads.

Once the ribbon was slipped through the two jump rings we simply tied a bow.

This technique will work well to spruce up both cylinder and drum shaped lampshades. To use on the bottom or middle of a bell shape lampshade you'll need to tack the beads or bead wire to the lamp with either hot glue or needle and thread respectively. This is to prevent the strand from rolling up the lampshade. Or you can simply use the strand at the top of the shade.

I hope this tutorial gives you an idea or two on how to embellish a tired or boring lampshade and make it into unique and creative addition to your room!


PS...thank you Janet for all of your amazing help!!! XXOO


  1. Oh my goodness, how cute is this. What a great idea. Clever, clever.

  2. What a great look. I would have bought those lamps too, especially for twelve dollars! Your tutorial was easy to follow and the end result was so fun. I really like the pop of color that it must bring to the room and I think it has a young fresh look that must make them perfect for your daughter's room.

  3. Oh-How pretty! That was a perfect solution and I love the fun aspect of them now. Great job, Barbara! xo Diana

  4. Barbara, your mind works in mysterious ways!! And it always comes up with a stupendous outcome. How pretty the lampshades look. I love what you do..Happy Wednesday..Judy

  5. I love it! SO fun. And I would like my waist to look like the lampshade too. :)

  6. Sooooooo pretty Barbara....I love them and I know your daughter does too!!

  7. Love, love your lampshades. Sooo pretty! The colors of the beads are beautiful.

  8. Well you did make it unique, really the beads and ribbon makes the lampshades come alive. The colors are so pretty too. A really great idea, and I so wish my waist could be that small!

  9. I like jewellers in london and specially this article of bracelet and have to view recently and there is really available lot of variety of jewellery, including engagement rings.

    best jewelry gift

  10. Great idea and I'm sure your daughter loved it! What young lady wouldn't? Thanks for your excellent tutorial and inspiration!

  11. The available materials for beads have grown so much since the 1930's. Now Swarovski crystal beads are available, as well as cubic zirconia, gold filled beads, Murano glass, gemstones, jade, various metals and so on. orbeez


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