Saturday, March 26, 2011


I gussied up our dining room chandelier with some new accessories: patterned fabric shades and colorful candelabra sleeves.

I'm going to go ahead and assume that the fabric I chose is going to fall in to that "not everyone's cup of tea" category. But I love it in that "so bad it's good" kinda way. I picked it up at a church rummage sale along with some other awesomely bad fabrics. It's some kind of weirdo 80's ikat-inspired super-graphic print in a seriously schizophrenic color scheme.

Anyway, I figured if I'm bothering to cover my own shades I might as well do it in a statement fabric. So I went for it. I bought some plain white shades on the cheap from Lowes and went to town. Justin was kind enough to document the process. So for those of you who are interested in a step-by-step how-to on recovering chandelier you go:

plain shades
kraft paper
double stick fusible web sheets
stitchless sewing glue
double fold bias tape

First make a pattern by wrapping kraft paper around the shade and cutting it to size. Make sure to leave enough room to fold one edge and have it overlap the other.

Then iron the fabric that you are going to use to cover the lampshades...

pin down the pattern...

and cut it out.

Remove the kraft paper and fold one edge of the fabric over...

and tack it down with a piece of fusible web.

Peel the paper off one side of the double stick fusible sheet...

press the fabric onto it...

and cut it out.

Peel the backing paper off, and starting at the existing seam, wrap the fabric around the shade unfolded side first.

Next, iron the fabric onto the shade using the steam function in order to make the bond permanent.

Steam one small area at a time and then press it out and smooth it down with your fingers between turns.

Trim any excess fabric off the edges.

Next, estimate how much trim you will need for the top and bottom of your shades, and cut it to size.

Apply the stitchless sewing adhesive to the top (or bottom) edge...

and spread it out with your finger.

Then apply the bias tape. Starting at the seam, wrap it around the edge, letting about a quarter inch show on the outside.

Pulling tight, guide the tape around the circumference of the shade until it just overlaps the other side.

Add a drop of glue at the overlap to secure the end...

and press and hold it to make sure it sticks.

Repeat these last few steps with the bias tape on the opposite side of the shade. And you're done!

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