Artistic Shades and How to Make Them - The Paper Shade Covered with Chintz - The

Pleated Shade

In lamp-shades, as in other things, fashion is always changing. At one time people exercised their ingenuity in devising new ways of manipulating crinkled paper with which to shade their lights. Now they design something more elaborate and lasting.

The paper shade, however, with a decoration of chintz or cretonne flowers, can easily be made at home. Indeed, cutting out birds and flowers, and pasting them on the shades is a fascinating task, and one which is occupying a great many women. Moreover, by doing the work oneself, one is able to have a shade which suits perfectly the decoration of the room.

Anyone making an initial experiment who feels nervous about choosing a chintz, will probably find a shop assistant who will be able to tell her what designs are sold most commonly for the purpose, and what have been proved to be successful.

Chintz-Covered Shades

Plain cartridge paper shades, bound top and bottom with gold and supported on wires, can be bought in a size to fit a standard lamp, and ready to decorate for 4s. 6d. If several are being made, however, it is an economy to buy the paper, which costs 1s. 6d. the yard. This paper has not the mottled effect of the ordinary drawing paper, and it is very wide. From one yard two shades can be cut, and it will cost 2s. 6d. to have each mounted. Thus the cost of the shades works out at 3s. 3d. each.

To get the right shape, first make a pattern in soft paper. The top should measure 36 inches, the lower edge 54 inches, and the shade should be 10 1/2 inches deep. Lay this pattern on the drawing paper, mark an outline with a pencil, and cut out along the line with a pair of scissors. People sometimes stick the chintz flowers on the flat shade before it is mounted, but the professional way is to apply them to the mounted shade. This makes it easier to carry the design right round the shade and over the join.

For sticking the chintz flowers a photo paste should be used. Brush a little on the back of the chintz design and then lay the chintz, face downwards, on a piece of blotting paper, in order that it may dry a little before being applied to the shade. This prevents any of the wet paste from being squeezed out under the edges of the design. In doing this work, it is advisable to wear a pair of wash-leather gloves. At any rate, owing to the moisture in the hands, the design and shade should be touched with the fingers as little as possible. The cut-out flowers can be first arranged on the paper pattern of the shade in order to find out the best way to place them. This, of course, will depend on the style of the design chosen. Jacobean patterns, with bold flower effects, look best wreathed around the shade in a wide band, with perhaps a butterfly here and there on the blank space on either side of the wreath. Pompadour cretonnes with small wreaths and baskets should have trails of little flowers and small baskets placed at equal distances. The correct distances should be measured, and a faint pencil mark put where each part of the pattern is to come.

Candle-shades, which can be bought for 2|d. or 3d. each, can be treated in the same style. This is an excellent occupation for children.

Similar effects can be obtained from the use of paints instead of chintz. Transparent colours must be used, but the design can be taken from chintz, cretonne, wallpaper, or china.

Pleated Shades

Pleated chintz shades, again, are very popular; they are cheap, they cost less than two shillings each, wear admirably, and, if the dust is lightly brushed off, will keep clean for a long time. Small designs are most suitable, but a scattered wreath is always effective.

A home made lamp shade of thick cartridge paper decorated with chintz flowers

A home-made lamp-shade of thick cartridge paper decorated with chintz flowers

The wire frame for a home made lamp shade. Inside is shown the folded shade

The wire frame for a home-made lamp-shade. Inside is shown the folded shade

Pleated chintz shades such as this can be made at a cost of less than 2s. each, and are both pretty and serviceable

Pleated chintz shades such as this can be made at a cost of less than 2s. each, and are both pretty and serviceable

For a standard lamp about 1 1/4 yards of chintz will be required. This should be cut into three widths, 13 inches deep, which must be stuck together at the selvedges in one straight piece. Care should be taken in cutting the widths to see that the pattern will match at the joins. When joined, the top and lower edges of the chintz must be pinked, with a 3/4 inch pink, care being taken to see that the pinks come opposite each other.

After the pleating is done, join the shade together with a liquid glue. At about 1 1/2 inches from the top, cut little oblong holes on the inner edge of the pleats, so that they will rest on the wire, and just below these, in the centre of each pleat, pierce a hole with a stiletto. Through these holes run a narrow piping cord. This, when drawn up, will keep the shade firmly in position.

Instead of silk, small-patterned and chine cretonnes can be used for covering lampshades. Such shades are expensive to buy but can be made at home quite cheaply. The wire mount may have to be made specially by an ironmonger, since the supporting wires between the two circular ones must be curved inwards so as not to show through the cretonne.

First cover these wires with thin tape, then gather on the cretonne-, top and bottom, just as in the case of the silk shade. A dull gold fancy galon, with a waved lower edge, such as can be bought from an art furnisher for 3 1/2d. a yard, should be used as a finish at the top and bottom of the shade. For the lower edge, a crystal - bead fringe will be wanted, costing about 1s. 6d. per yard.

Candle shades may be decorated with designs taken from chintz, cretonne, wall paper or china

Candle-shades may be decorated with designs taken from chintz, cretonne, wall-paper or china