How to Choose Lampshade For Your Lamp

Matching a lamp shade to a lamp can create a pleasing combination. For example, matching a subtle shade on an understated lamp base creates a calm aura.


The type of shade can be determined by the purpose a lamp serves. For instance, a shade for a desk lamp or reading lamp had better provide directs light down onto the desktop or onto reading material.


No matter what the ambiance of your room, the right lamp can contribute to the décor including drama, tranquility, energy or playfulness. For a bland lamp base in a peaceful corner you can match it with a shade that tones down the bulb. For a whimsical base, you can add a brightly patterned shade to get a touch of fun. For a hanging pendant light, place a themed shade to tie together a room.


Please use the material which should complement the lamp base as well as the rest of the room to make a shade. For instance, you can try some traditional or wildly innovative materials like paper silk or other fabric shades. Sleek glass and metal have been used to make lampshades for centuries. You can use those materials if you’re restoring a home with converted antique gaslights.

Style and Size

A simple shade frame can be covered with pleated, tucked or draped materials of any color and texture. Actually, even a simple round drum shade can enliven a drab space. So, square or rectangular shades with square-based lamps and round shades with curved or rounded bases are very common in life.

When you view the lamp from its intended display height, the shade should cover the lamp hardware. And, the table lampshade should be long enough, so when you are seated you can’t see the switch. The shade should hide the switch when you stand next to the lamp.

If the shade is slightly wider than the lamp base and it makes up approximately the top one-third of the total lamp height, the table lamp appears nicely balanced.

The dimension is very important when selecting shade for a floor lamp. However, when selecting it, the texture and color may overshadow size. For a floor lamp, it is very easy to spot a disproportionately undersized shade. Choosing an oversized shade can make the floor lamp unstable.


It is very important to choose a shade that allows plenty of air space between the bulb and the shade because many lampshades are made of materials that are potentially flammable.

Typically, a shade that fits over a lamp harp is a safe distance from the bulb. The shape of the lampshade helps to extract heat from the lamp. A shade with a narrow top opening may allow heat to build up inside the shade, while a large, open shade allows heated air to dissipate.

Turning the lamp for five minutes and then touching the top of the shade is a good way to check for ample ventilation. You had better select a more open style if the shade is hot. Or, you can switch to energy-efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs that burn cooler than incandescent bulbs.