This Lamp Needs a Shade…Can You Help?

It’s party time once again at Serenity Now for Amanda.  If you need help with a decorating dilemma, this party is for you.  Post your dilemma and Amanda’s helpful readers will offer solutions.
Decorating Dilemmas April 2010 2
My dilemma is this lamp.  My grandfather bought it who knows where and had it in his shed with the intentions of restoring it.  Years after granddaddy died, when it was time for granny to move into a retirement home, Mr. SP discovered it in the shed and took it home.  He cleaned it, rewired it, repainted the gold, and used rub and buff (or something like that) to bring out the texture of the wood.  This lamp has been waiting patiently in our basement for over five years for an appropriate shade.  Can you help?  Mr. SP and I have no idea what kind of shade would work with this lamp.
Do you have a lamp that is similar to this one with a great looking shade?  If you do, please share what you use that looks good.
Mr. SP did a great job on the details.
Any advice that you may have for a lamp shade for this lamp will be greatly appreciated.
Thanks to Amanda for hosting the party.  It will be fun to see what dilemmas are out in Blogland for the month of April.  Click here to return to the party.
Just to prove that this party really can help a gal out, check out Pam of Bibbidi Bobbidi Beautiful’s dilemma and solution from one of Amanda’s past parties.  What a transformation!  Here’s a peek:

You Go Girl!


  1. Gorgeous lamp. Sure wish I could help, but shade are the hardest thing in the world for me. I just know someone will tell you exactly the right thing. The fireplace transformation is unreal. Great party. Hugs, Marty

  2. What a cool lamp! I think a stained glass shade would look very vintage on it. I think they may be kind of hard to find though. We had a few stained glass lamps that we bought at Home Depot a few years ago, but you might be able to find some at thrift or antique stores.

  3. Your lamp is beautiful! I’m pretty sure I’ve seen lamps like this with fairly plain shades–pretty much drum shades, but perhaps with a slightly smaller top opening than bottom opening. That might be an easy option to try–you could probably find one for not too much money at someplace like Target and bring it home to give it a try. Good luck!

  4. I think a fluted glass shade that flares out at the end would look elegant with the curved “neck” of the lamp.

  5. It has really interesting details, Paula! Mr. SP did a good job getting it all dolled up for you. Do you have any specialty lamp stores in your area? I wonder if you took a photo in, maybe they could give you some ideas? I do like Richella’s idea of a small drum shade, but I think it will depend on the look you’re going for. Thanks so much for linking up and the sweet words about my party. 🙂

  6. Well, I am absolutely no help! I know zero about lamps. BUT, I do think it’s really pretty. Mr. SP did a great job of cleaning it up!

  7. These type of lamps had either a glass shade usually a white opaque or a small drum type shade that you attach from the top,you know the kind that has a finial on a regular table lamp.If you take it to a lamp place that repairs lamps they will probably have a recommendation. Good luck!! He did a great job fixing it all up, love it. Kathysue

  8. That lamp is really cool! I can’t wait to see what you do! I agree with Richella — I think a plain shade would be nice and showcase the details on the metal part of the lamp.

    And that fireplace transformation is amazing.


  9. OMGosh! What a Gorgeous lamp! Although I am no help what-so-ever. My advice would be what I would do: Hit antique stores and see if I could find one similar and see what type shade/glass cover was on one. Then hunt! I do think smaller would accent it more, nothing to over powering. LOVE the fireplace makeover. It looks awesome now.

  10. I have something similar, but not exactly. I found a cloth shade at Lowes that is about 6 inches across at the top and bells out to about 14 inches at the bottom. The light bulb holds it in place. I kind of like the suggestion of a glass shade if you could find one. It appears that you have turn the bulb down or up. I think there are several nice lamp shops in Charlottesville. It really is a wonderful lamp. No one else will have one like yours. I like things that no one else has! Plus there is a history there.

  11. It is a lovely lamp, and isn’t something from your grandmother’s house so much better than something you bought at a store!?

    I don’t know if it’s re-using or recylcling, but aren’t us thrifty girls so green!? Happy Earth Day!

    I think that Richella is right- a standard shade that has a smaller top and larger bottom. I don’t know how it would attatch, but I think that is what you need.

  12. That lamp is beautiful, but I think I would have trouble with a shade, too. It kind of seems like any shade you pick wouldn’t hang straight, right? I’d consider a globe light, and its definitely a great suggestion to take your photo to a lighting store for their recommendations.

    What about something shaped like this?

    Thanks for stopping by with advice for my dilemma!

  13. Just wanted to say thanks for the “you go girl!” I love your lamp! I feel like I’ve recently seen a similar lamp in one of my decor magazines. I’m going to try to find the photo and I’ll keep you posted…

  14. I’m not having any luck finding what I was looking for. My first instinct agrees with Richella- a pretty fabric shade with a slightly graduated drum shape in kind of a medium size would look great. If the lamp were smaller I’d say take it to the store with you, but instead I’d say get thee to target (or even walmart has a nice selection now) buy a few that seem to fit the bill and return whichever ones don’t work- just make sure to save the receipt for the return nazis at Target!

  15. I would say one that flares out. Small at the top and bigger at the bottom… I hate lamp shades so I am literally no help. I have a lamp and I keep picking up shades at thrift stores and yard sales and taking them home. Why do none of them look right???

  16. That is a very cool lamp, and I can see what it would be difficult to find a shade for it. Can’t wait to see what you find! Thanks for your comments on my blog!

  17. When I saw the picture of the lamp, I immediately thought a fluted shade that flares at the bottom would look great. Such a gorgeous piece – and so nice that it was your grandparent’s!

  18. It’s a gorgeous lamp; so unique! In keeping with the traditional style, I would choose either a pleated shade or a fluted shade in ivory. You might also experiment with a khaki linen or “burlap” like material shade in the same shapes if you can find it. Good luck!

    My link is not showing up on Amanda’s party for some reason, but I would love your opinion on my kitchen dilemma. You can check it out today on my blog!


  19. The lamp is beautiful! The first type of shade that comes to mind is stained glass. But I think it would be most helpful for you to visit vintage and antique shops. See what type of shades they have on display with those lamps. Maybe you will find the perfect match while you are out window shopping! Also, consider the room the lamp will be living in-what color would go best?
    Speaking of lamps and color….I have a lamp dilemma I could use help with.
    good luck with your lamp!
    -Mama E

  20. I’m with Pam – head to Target and buy a whole mess of lamp shades. Hopefully you’ll find something wonderful, if not I’d head to the specialty shop – it would be more expensive, but that lamp is totally worth it. What a gem!

  21. Hmm, this is a tough one! Well, it looks like a reading lamp so I doubt that it needs a translucent shade. What about doing something interesting with a bowl-turned-lampshade?

  22. what a wonderful piece! When I see the curves on the lamp I expect to see a bell shaped lamp shade. Maybe a frosted or opaque glass. Then again, maybe a colorful tiffany type lamp shade would fit nicely.

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