DIY Ruffled Lampshade

DIY Ruffled Lampshade

Hi there! You all know I love a good makeover, so let me show you how to make this DIY Ruffled Lampshade! This poor old lampshade has been though a lot, and needed a fresh look. My girls love ruffles, and similar lampshades are so expensive in stores, so this was the perfect project. Plus you can easily customize it to match your room. Let me show you how I did it!

Check out my easy washi tape wall decor project, too!

DIY Ruffled Lampshade


  • An old lampshade. If you don’t have one, they can be found at thrift stores and garage sales.
  • Fabric, cut into strips. I used the leftovers from a quilting jelly roll, but you can use regular fabric and cut it into strips yourself. I recommend quilting cotton for this project though.
  • Scissors.
  • Glue gun.

Start by gluing you first strip of fabric along the back seam of the lampshade, letting it hang down below the bottom edge by about an inch. Now make a short strip of glue parallel to the bottom of the lampshade just below the top of the strip. You want to work in short sections, about 2-3 inches. Gently scrunch up a small section of the top of the fabric and push it into the glue, using your thumb and forefinger. You’ll get the hang of it pretty quickly. Don’t worry about perfection, you’ll never see the top of the ruffles when we’re done.

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Add more glue, and keep going. See how the tight ruffles at the top create loose ruffles at the bottom? Keep going. If you run out of fabric, just glue on another strip, overlapping and continuing to ruffle.

When you get to the end of the first row, cut the fabric off leaving about an inch extra. Add just enough glue to lightly overlap the beginning of the fabric, and ruffle the end of the fabric onto the glue. It leaves a nearly seamless finish! Now the edges of the fabric are raw, so they may shed a bit. I like the shabby chic look with ruffles, but if you want a cleaner look you can just clean up the loose threads with your scissors.

It’s just so cute! Now let’s start the second row. I overlap the rows by an inch, and just ruffle it the same way we did the first layer. Keep going, adding more layers.

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You need less fabric as you go up the lampshade, so this is a great stash buster project. Keep going until you get to the very top row.

At the very top, just make sure that your ruffles are at the very top edge so they’re easy to cover with our finishing piece. Here’s what the shade looks like with all the ruffles on! Now let’s make the finishing piece. I just take a strip, and put glue along one edge.

Then fold it in 1/3 rd of the way, and do the same with the other side. Now put a line of glue on the end, and fold it over the top of your shade. It should cover the ruffle top and fold to the inside of the shade.

GO ahead and add glue in short sections on either side of the fabric strip, and keep folding it around the top of the shade. It will bunch a bit on the inside edge, so just try to keep it as smooth as you can. When you get to the end, cut off the fabric, leaving an extra inch.

Place a line of glue down, and fold the edge in by 1/4 inch. Then add another line of glue and wrap it around the top edge of the shade. You’re all done!!

Just pop it onto your lamp!

Using lightweight quilting cotton allows the light to still come through beautifully. I hope you have fun making over some lampshade with this fun DIY Ruffled Lampshade project!

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About the author

I'm a wife and mom of 3 kids, a blogger, beauty vlogger, graphic designer, and jill of all trades.

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