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20 Best Lampshades The Independent

20 Best Lampshades The Independent 20 Best Lampshades The Independent

The double layers of this sheer fabric lampshade give the light a warm glow. Its cylindrical shades are held in place by a metal frame that provides a good structure. Cut-out details make this shade a point of interest hanging over the dining table, or as a soft contrast to a standing light. It’s straightforward to fit and even has a ring reducer included. Fabric lampshades should be dusted regularly.

French Connection Hammered Copper Floor Lamp: £375, French Connection

The fretwork on these metal shades throws playful patterns of light onto walls and surfaces. Two tiers provide an elegant look and add substance to an otherwise simple design. The drums are made of mild steel and fit to a standard bulb holder with a ring. This calm off-white colour suits neutral decoration schemes and looks particularly good in bedrooms and nurseries. 

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If you’re looking for something traditional in style but want to avoid an old-fashioned look, Pooky’s pleated linen ikat shade is a great choice. It draws attention with its vibrant pattern, and provides a room with an unusual accent. There’s a huge range of choice available on the market, so you can find something to suit all tastes. The price is pleasantly affordable for this type of shade too. For something modern, the Silvia shade from Vita Copenhagen is also great value.

Marks & Spencer Dexter Floor Lamp: £179, Marks & Spencer Read more 10 best rocking chairs 10 best wall mirrors 10 best coat stands 10 best door stops and draught excluders

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Amber resin is used to make this vintage-style floor lamp, which gives it a distinctive colour and appearance. The stand is slim and 145cm tall, a height that adds to its formal, period feel. The base comes in a clear version too, and lighting specialist Pooky has a huge of range of coloured lampshades in silk and cotton. Delivery in the UK is free. This takes an E27 screw-in lightbulb.

House of Hackney Artemis Velvet Table Lampshade: £130, Liberty London

Pooky Printed Linen Ikat Shade in Black Zig- Zag: £60, Pooky

A well-considered lampshade is the piece that can finish off a room, providing a focus or tying together various parts of your decor. There’s a multitude of ways to dress up a naked bulb holder, with rattan, velvet and silk remaining popular choices. Modern shades are less about covering up a light bulb and more about making a feature of it instead. Styles in perforated metal and wire create patterns that give a room a special ambience.

Dowsing & Reynolds Origami Paper Lamp Shade: £47.99, Dowsing & Reynolds

French Connection’s cinema-style tripod lamp is a real showstopper. The reflector is made of burnished copper, hammered with minute dimples to amplify light and give a warm glow. The legs and support are finished in matte black, and the reflecting dish can be angled to suit. It takes a G9 bulb (not included), which fits under a copper-dipped bulb cover.

​Pooky is a great source for shades, with many designs coming in up to five sizes, a range of colours and a variety of shapes. We looked at the 30cm-diameter empire shade, which is well-crafted in soft pleated linen and a monochrome style that updates ikat patterning. Ikat is a traditional Indonesian method of tie-dying to create patterns, which has recently come back into fashion.  

The small shade and slim proportions of the Cody lamp make it good for dim corners where lighting needs to be enhanced. The marble base is small but heavy, supporting a bronze stand and enamel shade that has an industrial feel. The fabric cord feeds back into the stand, meaning there are no messy wires on show. It works with a range of energy-saving bulbs (not included).

This rattan shade makes a good finishing touch to a room. It’s lightweight and can be simply clasped over existing light fittings. The open weave casts light patterns on to surrounding walls, adding depth and interest to a room. The soft grey and natural material match well with a variety of interior schemes without overpowering them. This one is only suitable for ceiling lights.

Paper lampshades here give a warm, diffused light that instantly gives a room a cosy atmosphere. The stylish Laponie light has a wooden tripod base and folded paper shade, which looks good on and off. Lightweight construction means it’s not the steadiest – thin tripod legs suit carpet rather than smooth floors. Note this lamp comes with a French plug, and requires an adapter. Takes an E27 bulb.

Debenhams Home Collection Circular Loop Lampshade: £40, Debenhams

Husband-and-wife design team House of Hackney is known to take flowers, foliage, and historic decoration as its inspiration. The luxurious Artemis lampshade is covered in velvet fabric with a floral design on a powder blue background. It works for ceiling lights, but the tapering shape looks best with a floor or table lamp where it can be appreciated at eye level. 

This budget floor lamp from the Debenhams Home Collection has twisting tripod legs made in nickel and a fabric drum shade with a metallic finish. It’s a good neutral solution for enhancing lighting in most rooms, but the materials and finish lack the quality of the more expensive options on this list. Slim legs make it best for use on carpet rather than hard floors. It includes a two-year warranty. Takes a maximum 42W Edison screw ES halogen bulb.

This Danish design is a sculptural shade made up of tiers of shaped petals. It arrives flat-packed, so you’ll need to spend about 20 minutes putting it together. There are two sizes (34 and 45cm diameters) which you could group or hang in clusters, as well as solo. It works for lamps and pendants, and secures to the cable and bulb holder with polycarbonate fins. It’s available in a number of colours, too: white, steel, brushed brass or copper.

In fashion and interiors, velvet is typically associated with opulence, yet Habitat’s large shade is surprisingly affordable. Its traditional drum shape is a generous 49cm in diameter, covered neatly with thin velvet for a silky smooth touch. It’s particularly striking in deep green, but also comes in lilac and grey. It’s not fiddly to fit, and works for both ceiling lights and floor lamps. A reducer ring is included with this one.

Maisons du Monde Laponie Tripod Floor Lamp: £165, Maisons du Monde

The industrial-looking Lens floor lamp is made of bent metal with a transparent glass shade. The stand meets the base with an unusual welded detail, and has a finish of antique bronze. The shape means it fits well over the end of a sofa or armchair, without taking up the space of an overreach lamp. Assembly is required, as well as a bulb. A squirrel-cage one works best.    

These crisp concertina paper lampshades are handmade in India. They unfold to a variety of shapes, and clasp together with magnets. In bright yellow, red, blue and grey, they bring a touch of fun to a room, and look most effective hanging as a group. Lighting specialist Dowsing & Reynolds also offers a range of fabric cables to accessorise with.  

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Clarissa Hulse’s joyous designs celebrate colour, pattern and nature. The Mystras shade is made of silk, giving a beautiful quality to the light. The abstract pattern derives from wild grasses seen in Greece. There are different versions for ceiling and lamp, and two available sizes. You can also match the shade to cushions and art prints in the same range.

Marks & Spencer’s Dexter lamp scores highly on style and affordability – you’ll love showing it off to friends and wowing them with how much it costs. As a feature lamp, it’s best used where it will be seen, but would also add general illumination to parts of the house that could use some more attention. The Gray and Willow Cody lamp is more of an everyday design. Also well-priced, it’s light and slim too, meaning it’s easy to move around when and where extra lighting is required.

Winter’s dark nights call for some extra illumination. A good lamp can transform an overlooked spot in your home into a cosy place of retreat. If you’re keen to give a room some added warmth and atmosphere, a neutral lampshade or diffusing design is what to look for.  Alternatively, a feature floor lamp can be just the thing to finish your perfectly-planned interior – one to dazzle guests with your sense of style. 

The stand and shade of this Danish floor lamp come separately, with a choice of products to mix and match across the Vita Copenhagen range. This combination tops a 140cm-tall white stand with a dark grey shade that resembles flower petals. The textile cord and brass pull are quality touches, and it works best with an E27 13W bulb (not included). Self-assembly is required. 

This is an over-reaching copper lamp with a brilliant finish. The curved frame and domed shade nod to classic Italian design from the Fifties and Sixties, while the copper finish is a contemporary twist. It rotates 360 degrees, and the shade’s position is adjustable. More compact and affordable than mid-century originals, this lamp is a hit in modern homes. It comes in grey and chrome too. Takes an E27 bulb (maximum of 60W).

We’ve mentioned the size of each shade and indicated where there is a range of dimensions. We’ve also mentioned where a shade is only suitable for either a ceiling light or lamp and those pendants that might require the help of an electrician. We’ve seen the shades in different settings, some from the high street and others by independent designers.

This fuss-free lamp is well-priced for the size and would make itself useful just about anywhere in the home. Four legs give it a sturdy base, and the cream linen shade (included) can be swapped out over time when you feel like a change. It takes a standard E27 bulb (not included), so you don’t have to hunt around for something specific when it needs changing.

This is a feature floor lamp with spherical shades that twist around a central stem. The polished brass finish and opaque shades gives the lamp a touch of glam. It would suit the dining or living room best, where it can be admired while entertaining. The base is heavy, keeping the slim lamp steady. It takes six G9 20W bulbs, which aren’t included.

This stunning wire pendant has a flowing shape that begs to be looked at. The 48cm diameter size is good for providing an interesting accent over a dining table or breakfast bar, rather than tying together a whole living room. The shade is part of a pendant light, which you may need an electrician to help fit. Hang it low to allow it to be seen from all angles.

Some shades work both for ceiling lights and lamps, a versatile option if you want to switch things up in future. Depending on your shade and bulb holder, you may need a ring reducer to ensure it fits comfortably. They’re rarely included with the shade, but are cheap to pick up online or in your local DIY shop.

On a practical note, think about whether the light needs to be adjustable, either by height or an angled head, or whether a compact lightweight lamp that’s easy to move around will suit your space better.

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