How to make a yarn lampshade

Make a pendant lampshade statement with this brilliant yarn lampshade DIY make

the yarn lampshade has stripes of yellow, white and green yarn

Got a free afternoon and way more yarn than you could comfortably use in your lifetime? Enter the colour block pendant lampshade and our yarn lampshade tutorial! It’s a joyfully simple way to upcycle two plain lampshades into one statement piece. Plus, there’s all the fun and faffing of picking the exact shades to work with your décor. Upping the ooh-factor in your gaff just got a whole lot easier.
For safety, use LED light bulbs and never leave the lampshade switched on unattended.

This yarn lampshade project was originally published in Mollie Makes issue 99.

How to make  yarn lampshade


You Will Need

  • Any yarn (We used Aran weight cotton yarn), We used Aran weight cotton yarn
  • Two matching lampshades with slanting sides, Look out for thee in charity shops
  • Masking tape
  • Craft knife
  • Florist’s wire
  • Pencil rubber and pencil

Total time:

Step 1

3 balls of yarn for the lampshade - yellow, grey and white

When selecting the yarn colours for your yarn lampshade, it’s best to use three – a couple of bolder colours that complement each other and a third neutral shade to offset them. We’re using aran weight yarn, but you can use a different yarn weight. But keep the yarn weight consistent for all 3 colours. To find out about different yarn weights, see our yarn weight conversion chart.

Step 2

yarn lampshade step1

Place one lampshade on top of the other, as shown, and using a pencil and the main image as a guide, mark out sections for each stripe of colour. They don’t have to all be the same width.

Step 3

the detail of the pencil marks on the 2 lampshades is shoed

Using a pencil, write the initial of each yarn colour on the sections you want to wrap with it on both of the lampshades.Make a statement lampshade by mixing the colours up sp they do not match on the different halves.

Step 4

sticking length of green yarn inside the yarn lampshade

Secure the end of the yarn for the first section in place using masking tape, leaving some excess yarn to tie off later.

Step 5

Yellow yarn is knotted on to the green tarn indie the yarn lampshade

Wrap the first marked section by passing the yarn up through the lamp and around the outside. You may need to push the strands together as you go to keep them tidy. When you get to the end of the section, tie on the next yarn colour on the inside of the lamp using a double knot, as shown.

Step 6

yarn lampshade step7

Use an eraser to remove the pencil marks as you go to avoid them showing through when the lamp is switched on.

Step 7

yarn lampshade step6

Continue to wind the yarn around and up through the lamp to wrap each section, as in Step 5, until the whole lamp is covered. The lengths of yarn should sit side by side and not overlap each other. You may find it helpful to hold the lampshade between your knees, passing the ball of yarn through from one hand to the other to speed up the wrapping process.

Step 8

yarn lampshade step8

When you get to the end, remove the masking tape from the first strand of yarn and tie it to the end of the last strand of yarn.

Step 9

yarn lampshade step9

Use scissors to trim off any long tails from where you’ve knotted the yarns on the inside of the lamp.

Step 10

yarn lampshade step10

Repeat Steps 4-9 with the second lampshade – you may want to evaluate the colour distribution now you’ve completed one.

Step 11

the two yarn lampshades sit stacked on top of each other, with the wider ends facing each other. Hands use a craft knife to cut a slit in the yarn lampshade

Once you’ve wrapped the second lamp, stack it on top of the first one, as shown. Next, use a craft knife to carefully cut a small slit into four sides of each lamp where they sit together, just above the wire frame.

Step 12

hands place florist wire through the yarn lampshade pair

Pass a small piece of florist’s wire through each of the slits and pull it tightly, then twist the ends together on the inside to secure both lampshades together. To finish off, push the yarn over the wire to disguise it.


More like the yarn lampshade

Discover more brilliant lampshade projects on Gathered! Try our How to make a lampshade tutorial for a fabric cover lampshade. Our how to make a paper lampshade walks you through decorating a shade with die cut papers, or try our DIY origami lampshade to fold a different shade with paper. We slo have a DIY macrame lampshade tutorial for you, or see our pick of the kits in this lampshade kits review.