I’m certainly not the first person to update a lamp or sconce shade in this sort of way, but I wanted to share my process and the difference it made for a fixture in my guest bathroom… it just felt worthy of a blog post! As we’re wrapping up the guest bath reno, I found a super affordable light fixture at Lowe’s, but wanted to stylize it a bit more. For $10 and 10 minutes of my time, I totally transformed the look of this light. The best part? The entire fixture (with the DIY) cost less than $100. Click through to see how I added a simple contrast border to the shade.
This is what the two shades that came with the fixture looked like- they’re actually very nice and would be beautiful left as is. I just wanted to jazz them up a bit! We’re still tiling in the bathroom, but I wanted to mimic the black contrast pencil tile and bring the graphic stripe upward to the sconce. Here’s the sneakiest sneak peek of the bathroom (remember- we’re still tiling and haven’t started grouting yet)…
It’s cute, right? I’m digging the high-contrast black and white vibe. It certainly has a vintage appeal. Here is what you’ll need for the project…
- livex lighting mendham 2-light black hardwired sconce
- liquid stitch
- ribbon (I used two size variations)
Step 1 // Plan your layout. Initially, I thought I wanted the ribbon to wrap around the top portion of the shade. Make 100% sure that’s where you want it to go because once the liquid stitch glue sets, there is no turning back…
Step 2 // Glue the ribbon down. Luckily, I only squeezed out one drop of glue before deciding I wanted the ribbon to line the bottom portion of the shade instead. Ha! A quick wipe and the crisis was avoided.
For one, I applied the glue directly to the shade… for the second, I applied the glue to the ribbon. I think dotting the glue onto the ribbon worked best, but either method secured the ribbon really well! Mine isn’t perfectly straight, but it doesn’t really bother me. I’m sticking with “it adds charm, character, and a vintage vibe”.
Step 3 // Connect the ribbon at the seam. Once you get to the end of the ribbon, trim it, and press it down on the back shade seam. It’s ok if it doesn’t precisely align… nobody will ever notice since it’s on the backside facing the wall.
Step 4 // Repeat. If you like the double line look, like mine, repeat the steps for the second ribbon. Allow the shade to dry for 24 hours before installing them on the sconce.
I really like the way they turned out and the graphic punch it adds to the sconce! It definitely has a designer feel, similar to this beauty or this one.
I also really like the shape of this particular sconce. It has a very traditional, delicate, and timeless look with those swooping arms.
Want to see it lit up? This light will live above a burl table / cosmetic vanity in the guest bath (see the floor plan in this post), so it’s on a different switch than the main lights. I feel like it gives off the perfect, warm glow that would be ideal for a relaxing soak in the tub that sits adjacent to it.
I think it feels romantic! When we don’t have house guests visiting, you better believe I’ll be taking over this bathroom until it’s time to renovate the master bath. What do you think of my little light update? It’s probably the easiest DIY project I’ve ever shared. This also could apply to any lamp shade… a table lamp, floor lamp, wall sconce, etc.
PeggiFebruary 25, 2019 at 4:10 am
Looks smashing with the pencil tile! Lampshades are SO expensive, especially groovy ones. An easy upgrade like this makes a big difference. I’m toying with the idea for a DIY pleated-look shade where you wrap it in a strip of fabric. A potential tears and cursing situation, for sure. Happy Monday!
SarahFebruary 25, 2019 at 8:35 am
Thanks Peggi! They really are. I’m digging your idea to wrap the ribbon for a pleated look… my friend Gwen just did that in her daughter’s bathroom (that I know you’ll love). SO many beautiful colors in that space! Hope your week is off to a great start. xox
Julie SFebruary 25, 2019 at 9:10 am
Oh my, this brings back memories of doing just that to a thrift store lamp I got when we were broke newlyweds. My style sense was, shall we say, much less developed 8 years ago and yours looks worlds better than mine did! Bonus tip, if you ever need to do this trick on a more slanted shade or with wider ribbon and find it won’t conform well, try bias tape from Joanns which can handle being stretched more on its bottom edge and less on the top edge.
SarahFebruary 25, 2019 at 9:49 am
Such a great tip Julie!! I think the ribbon I used was thin enough that it wrapped pretty well, but a larger one definitely wouldn’t. Great idea on the bias tape :) xo