Masthead header

Pretty Lampshades. Love ’em or leave ’em?

Do you have any lampshades in your home that are covered with patterned fabric – or perhaps colors that are not your typical white or cream? When I was adding some yellow accents to our back porch I came across this beauty at Target: I loved that it had the perfect shade of yellow that was needed AND a pattern that worked with the fabric patterns in the pillows being used on the sofa.  So I bought it and brought it home to try out on one of the 4 lamps on the porch….too big for the desk lamp, too contrasting in style for the rustic pottery bases, so it had to be on the floor lamp.  It was pretty there, but I guess I like things to “flow” too much.  It just didn’t work for me with the 3 white shades on the lamps there- even though I truly adored the fabric (wish it was a pillow).

And here’s the other thing.  I am a light fanatic.  You would not believe all the lamps in this house.. and wall lamps, and sconces, and pendant lights, and on and on.  I could open a light store – seriously.  And much to my husband’s dismay, they are turned on almost all the time because I LIKE LIGHT (not the overheads – just the lamps.) So when I turned on the lamp with the pretty yellow shade, it was no longer pretty and yellow and bright.  It turned a deep tan color and DARK.  Did I mention I like light? I really wanted it to work, but no.  I even went around the house trying it in every room that had a lamp it might fit.  No luck. I returned it to Target the next day.  Sadness.

And Target is not the only one with pretty lampshades.  Have you seen these?

A map shade from Pottery Barn (that might work in the boys’ room)

Wicker shades from Pottery Barn  (These really ought to work on the porch.)

These by Suzanne Kasler at Ballard Designs are also pretty – especially the ikat one.

Kelley at the Polished Pebble  uses a lot of grainsack shades on her lamps, and her house is beautiful.  I think I could live with this look if all of the lamps in the room where it was used had similar shades (and they wouldn’t have to all match.)  But you still have the issue of the darkening effect from the shade.

So for those of you who have a gorgeous lampshade, how do you make it work in your house?  Does the darkness bother you?  I would really like to be able to use one somewhere here.

All look gorgeous to me on the shelf in the store or on my computer screen (or with the lamp turned off!)

What do you think?

a signature

You might enjoy these posts:

Julia @ Hooked on Houses - June 7, 2012 - 9:12 am

It’s amazing how a fun new lampshade can update an old lamp or change the look of a room. I got two that are very similar to the gold and cream one from Target at the top–mine have more cream and less gold in the pattern, but I love them! 🙂

Kelley - May 2, 2012 - 12:38 pm

Hi Kelly, thank you so much for showing my little raffia lamps. Those were actually little jugs that I had made into lamps and them had the shades done in vintage fabric to match.

Your site is really fun and so well done…I will stop by often

xo kelley
Hey Kelley! I’m so happy you were able to take a break from all your projects and drop by here today. LOVE all your lamps – you are the QUEEN! Glad you liked the site, and I hope you will come back again.

kim porter - May 2, 2012 - 1:50 am

Hi Kelly! I just read your comment on my blog and I thought I’d come over and check you out! Love the lampshades! I’m so boring with mine, guess it’s time to come out of the box! I look forward to reading more of your posts!
Hey Kim! So glad you came over for a virtual visit. I’m “boring” too with all of my shades…got to figure out a way to make these pretty ones “work”. Thanks for reading, and please come back again for another visit!

The Life and Times of a Back Porch Redo – Part 2

So the last time we talked, I shared with you my encounter with Earl.  Today let’s chat about what has become of that affair.

Spray painting the wicker made a huge difference in the mood of the porch.  I really like how it has turned out (although my beginner photography skills are not conveying the real color of the paint.  It is actually more green than gray…tilt your laptop monitor back some. 🙂 )

If you read part 1 of this porch adventure, you might notice that the furniture has been rearranged among other things.  Our kitchen and dining room both open onto and look out on this porch.  Previously the view was of an antique wicker table.  I thought perhaps it would be better if you could see the sofa with all the throw pillows on it when you looked out the doors.

So the sofa was moved to the opposite wall, and the big cabinet was moved over between the doors.

This super useful cabinet started out in my daughter’s bedroom, but when we made some changes in the playroom, she inherited a cabinet from in there, and the back porch inherited this wonderful wardrobe.  So instead of holding cute little dresses and hats, it now holds baskets, lanterns, candle sticks, vases, and our ice-cream churns.  Everybody needs a cabinet on their back porch like this.

Next to the cabinet is my favorite wicker “wingback” chair (which actually started out in our sons’ bedroom.)

Behind the large wicker chair you will see a little desk.

When I was in my early teens, my mother took me to a flea market.  We spied this cute little desk, buried under a coat of bright orange paint and other layers of beauty.  I paid $10 for this treasure – yep, it’s true.   It was my first furniture purchase and my first experience with stripping.  (You know I am talking about furniture. 🙂 )

Here is a closer look at some of the things on the desk.

The very first thing we bought when my husband and I were married, was a porch swing for our then little screened porch.  We sat on it for many many years, but eventually it was no longer usable.  It was replaced by this wicker swing, and we love it.

Beside that end table is the sofa.  Here is another view of it…this one taken one morning.  It is really nice out on the porch early in the morning.

On the other end of this space is our porch dining area. We had a round wicker table and chair set there forever.  It was a set that I had driven 30 miles to purchase.  I had tied it onto the truck, and it flew out of the back on the way home – in the middle of the interstate no less. (Obviously, my rope skills weren’t very good!) Luckily enough, no one wrecked and a nice gentleman stopped to help me and tied it all back on.  Thank goodness for the kindness of strangers!  Anyway, after 28 years of use, the table and chairs were pretty much only held together by spraypaint. It was time for something new.

My husband had built a long table for our deck years ago.  The base was good, but the top was rotten.  So he reused the base and built a new much wider top for it.

This is how it turned out.

The chairs are antiques that we bought during the first year of our marriage.  They are not really sturdy enough for daily wear and tear, but they work for the porch use.  Here is a little closer view of what is on the tabletop.

And that brings us to the last stop on the tour.  This area is still not quite finished, and probably won’t be for awhile.

The table is the one that belonged to my husband’s grandmother, and it also has had a new top made for it.  It works great for a buffet.  This area is not finished because I want to find something to hang above the table…a cabinet…shelves…just not sure yet.  So now I can have fun hunting for it (whatever it may be), or perhaps sketch out an idea for my hubbie to build.

This ends our little back porch tour.  I hope there was something here to give you an idea that you can use in your own home – or maybe motivate you to buy yourself a paint sprayer. 🙂

Before I leave you, I have one other thing I want to do.  The other day Aimee from Sixteen Fourteen sweetly bestowed the Liebster Blog Award to me and my tiny blog. Aimee has a neat blog, a killer photo gallery in her husband’s office, wonderful Pinterest boards, and she just wrote a post about porch inspiration (that’s funny and inspirational!)  How’s that for good timing? You should go read it.

Anyway, “Liebster” means precious, and I want to pass this award on to someone who has one of THE most precious blogs around….

Elizabeth at  Lovely Little Parties.

Her children’s parties should be pictured in the dictionary next to the word precious. Love them!  You should go check them out too (and then get busy on your porch. 🙂 )

Until next time…

a signature


You might enjoy these posts:

Stacy - July 25, 2015 - 1:11 pm

I adore your porch! We are about to build a screened porch with a fireplace and I have been scouring the Internet for inspiration! (That’s me that has been stalking all your Pinterest boards!😉) I am truly in love with your porch and plan on showing my contractor all these beautiful pictures!! They won’t start building until the fall. I can’t wait to start enjoying it and I can only hope it turns out half as beautiful as yours!! You are so talented! Thank you so much for sharing your gifts with all of us!!
PS I was hoping Holly would convince you to start instagramming!!😊

Belinda Del Pesco - October 19, 2012 - 10:38 am

I so love this room. You’ve made it modern and nostalgic, open and airy – but warm and inviting too. I grew up in CT adoring my grandparent’s wicker filled sunporch. I remember helping my grandmother re-paint all the furniture sunny yellow when I was about 12, and your post reminded me of that. What a great room you’ve created for your family. Bravo.
Belinda – What sweet words! How cheerful a room full of yellow wicker must have been. I would have loved that! Thank you for reading the post and leaving your kind comments here. I hope you have a wonderful weekend!


Susan - May 13, 2012 - 5:58 pm

Hi, Kelly! I learned about your blog from one of my new blog friend’s-Phyllis from blissitydoodah- and I had to make a quick hop over here before church. I’m home now looking things over more closely, and I love everything I see. I want an “Earl” in my life! Have to ask-do you get rain on your screened porch? I’m leery about putting “furniture” on mine. I’m following you and can’t wait to see what you come up with next!
Hey Susan! So glad you stopped by from Phyllis’ blog, and I am glad you like the things here. Everybody that spraypaints needs “Earl”. I get rain on the end by the table if it blows in. I get some splash on the end by the desk, but not too bad….we are usually in a drought here! My wooden pieces have a type of waterproof finish on them. All the wicker is painted with exterior paint, and all the cushions are treated with a fabric protector (Scotchguard).

phyllis - May 11, 2012 - 11:13 pm

I do remember coming here now!
I saw your porch but didn’t comment I don’t guess…
well I love it! It is so Southern and so restful looking, too.
Each little detail looks inviting.
I have a front porch you can come tackle!
I can’t stand the heat though…I’ll just look out the window
at whatever you do LOL.
Thanks for the sweet compliments on my porch, Phyllis. Get you some ceiling fans out on your porch so that you can enjoy it more! You’re going to say you want air conditioning, right? 🙂 (Air conditioning would be great here in August – fans just don’t do the trick then.)
Please come back to visit again. I love your comments!

Michelle - May 7, 2012 - 12:55 pm

Love your beautiful porch and your blog too!
Have a great week,

Elizabeth - May 3, 2012 - 9:19 pm

Kelly, I’m just catching up on a few blogs…..thank you so much for your kind words. You are too sweet! Your porch looks amazing. I love the new wicker color……oh, and you should definitely make the hot browns! You don’t have to have Derby as an excuse either!

Kelly - May 1, 2012 - 9:50 pm

Makes me want to curl up on the swing with a book and sweet tea- beautiful!
That would be a good thing to have out on the porch, Kelly – especially now that it is over 90 degrees here today. The ceiling fans are going full force! Thank you for stopping by to read and take a look.

Pam Wilson - May 1, 2012 - 6:25 pm

This looks great! I love it all. Amazing how the tilt of the monitor shows that green-cool color. I especially like your little ten dollar table.
Instant color change just by tilting your screen! Wish I could do the same thing with rooms in the house, Pam! Isn’t that little $10 desk wonderful? One of my best bargains around. I’ll have to show y’all my other desk bargain was a true yard sale find! Thanks for reading and leaving your nice comments Pam.

amanda jones - April 30, 2012 - 8:33 am

Gorgeous! I am just wondering how do you keep it all “safe” and beautiful from the elements? I am always fighting mositure,dust, etc… on our screen porch…??!!
I am glad you like it too Amanda! As far as keeping it safe from the elements…the side with the sofa has a deep overhang on the roof, so it does not really get terribly wet. (All the cushions are treated with a waterproofing spray.) The end with the dining table gets wet if there is wind with the rain (as was the case on prom night.) The other end gets some splash from the deck, but the only thing that gets wet there is the desk – and it is has a polyurethane finish on it. If there is no lightning, I like to sit out there during a rainstorm.
Dust is not that big a problem…easily vacuumed (the floor and the furniture) with my wonderful Dyson vacuum cleaner. BUT when pollen season rolls around it is AWFUL for about a month. It is a horrible yellow powder that blankets everything. Usually that is March, and I threaten every year to wrap the whole thing in plastic for that month! We just wait it out and then hose down all the wicker, vacuum all the cushions, and the rug (and the walls!) and do our annual spring cleaning out there when the evil pollen stops falling. Other than that terrible month, it is pretty easy to maintain with a vacuum cleaner.

tessa - April 30, 2012 - 8:19 am

hi kelly ~ your back porch is beautiful!!!! and your styling is perfection! right out the pages of a magazine!!! xo, tessa
I’m glad you like the back porch, Tessa. It is my favorite space in the house (well, I guess it is not really IN the house. 🙂 ) Wish I could get all you sweet readers to come sit out there for a visit.

Aimee - April 30, 2012 - 6:48 am

Absolutely stunning, Kelly! Off to check out Lovely Little Parties. 🙂
Aimee you are too kind! Thank you. I know you will enjoy Elizabeth’s photos over at Lovely Little Parties.

S u b s c r i b e   b y   E m a i l