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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?

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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!
kim whitebarnbasics.blogspot.com
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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!
Kelly

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
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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.
Kelly

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! :)

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