How to make a paper lampshade: origami lampshade instructions

Make a paper lampshade with Zoe Patching's origami lampshade instruction – you can resize the origami lampshade template for lamps big and small!

origami lampshade tutorial

It looks complicated, but our handy Origami lampshade template does all the hard work for you! With some scoring and folding, we’ll show you how to make a fantastic origami lampshade, which you can colour with inks.

Apart from our template, all you need is your basic crafting kit, some A4 sheets of card and a couple of spare hours to conjure up a design to rival those on the high street!


Step 1

origami lampshade 1

Working on an A4 piece of card, concertina fold along the longer side at 1cm intervals, scoring the folded lines.

Using the  Origami lampshade template score and fold diagonal lines across the concertina panel.

Repeat on another piece of A4 card, to create the desired lampshade diameter.


Step 2

origami lampshade template 2

To add colour, you can blend Distress Ink into the long edges of each A4 piece of card. Adhere the A4 pieces together. Punch a small hole through the top of each folded pleat.

Thread twine through each hole.

Step 3

Origami paper lampshade 3

To form the slightly conical shape of the shade, you’ll need to gently pull the cord, so all the pleats fold neatly together in a circle at the top of the design.

Pull the shade into shape by gathering the pleats together on the cord. Once the shade is the size you require, secure the ends of the cord together. Our example has a closed top and an open bottom, but you can make a version with both ends open too  – ideal if you are making a lampshade for a hanging room light.


Have you had your eye on one of those gorgeous, trendy, paper lampshades that are hugely popular at the moment? Before you rush off to the shops to buy one, have you thought about making your own?

When making paper lampshades, ensure the shade doesn’t directly touch your lightbulb, and the bulb’s wattage isn’t too high, so the paper doesn’t become discoloured or scorched from the heat of the bulb.

The folds in the design cast beautiful light and shade.

Fancy a star shaped paper shade?


You can scale up this Christmas origami star to use as a shade on a small light fitting. Make sure you use a very low wattage bulb with this one – it would make a lovley night light shade for a child’s bedroom.

How to make a Christmas star out of paper