Would you believe that this lampshade is made of UPCYCLED, LEFT OVER and REPURPOSED MATERIALS – bead garlands that had been used for Christmas tree decorations, left over golden thread from gift wrapping in previous years and yarn scraps in different colors.
There was no plan of how to make this lampshade. I only wanted to play with colors, shiny materials and be free when allowing my imagination to fly. It took me some time to realize that what limited me during my play was the thought at the back of my head: “But what will people think about this craziness I am creating here? They will think I have lost any sense of taste or reality…” Those thoughts drained my joy and tied my hands. Soon I figured out it was a wrong attitude and very limiting frame towards my creation process and mood. I decided to stretch my comfort zone and stop caring about the possible opinions of others. So and what if I would be seen as a weirdo who creates shiny rubbish?
This lampshade is my story of playing freely and being detached from the outcome and evaluations. Making this lampshade was The Journey of Pure Egoistic PLEASURE and FUN.
I enjoyed tearing off the fabric from the thrift store lampshade. I had lots of fun when playing with gold bead garlands that I was wrapping around the lamp´s carcass. And it certainly was such a pleasure and meditation to crochet all those different motives of flower shapes that would fill the panes of lampshade.
STEPS OF HOW I MADE THIS LAMPSHADE:
1. I tore off fabric and ribbons from lampshade, cleaned it from glue residue (picture 1).
2. I wrapped gold beaded garlands around the carcass. (I chose gold color because the foot was with some golden parts.) My garlands from thrift store were of different length and shade. For crazy lampshade such variety of golden color was fine. At first I needed to be sure I had enough of garlands, so after wrapping each piece, I fixed it temporarily with elastic ribbon (picture 2)
3. When I was satisfied with the result, I fixed every ending of garlands with golden thread and needle, so that garlands would hold in the right place (picture 3). In fact, such golden carcass lampshade looked very good (picture 4). And I left it in this condition for few months, while I was figuring out: IF I would like to add anything else, and if so – then what would it be.
4. After some time I felt that I wanted to have one very colorfulpiece of decor in our living room. Also: I was very much into crocheting different colorful elements. So, I indulged into crocheting 24 pieces, each one different, planning to use 3 elements per pane. As the lamp´s foot was green and golden (and I just loved the gold beads on the lampshade), I decided to use green, blue, violet and purple colors, and of course – even more gold. For the first three or four crochet elements I was following crochet patterns, but then I added more fun to creation process by letting myself create freely whatever form was coming.
5. Previously, for my family and friends I had made crocheted and embellished 3D snowflakes that I had stiffened. I knew I would apply the same technique for this lampshade to make stiff all my crocheted work stiff, so it would hold the shape. To do it, I took some old canvas and carton boxes from shoes, and wrapped them in plastic. Then I created mix of white glue with water 1:1 and applied it to each element (picture 5). I fixed each element with pins, so it would have the shape I wished to achieve (picture 6). I let them to dry overnight.
6. When crocheted flowers were dry, I created 8 columns each with 3 elements. The biggest element was at the bottom and the smallest was on the top, so they would fit the panes that were bigger at the bottom. I paid attention to the color combination of elements within the pane and considered how they fit with the colors of neighboring pane. When I was satisfied with the result, I fixed each element inside the pane by stitching it with gold thread (picture 7).
7. Some pains had gaps between elements or edges of carcass, so I filled them up by adding some additional strings of thread (picture 8).
8. My lamp originally had a cable that was golden color which was perfect. But it´s switch was ugly white, so I painted it golden with acrylic paint.
9. And finally, I changed the white light bulb to the biggest golden light bulb I could find in the store.
10. The lamp was ready, I was happy and satisfied with having enjoyed the whole creative process and going with its flow. The final step turned out to be the chance to OBSERVE MY ATTITUDE towards feedback about the lamp that I keep getting from our visitors when they notice the lamp in the corner of the room. It´s an interesting and ongoing process :-)
And I have put together some DIY TIPS FOR STIFFENING CROCHET ORNAMENTS which might be very helpful when creating more decorations for your home and gifts. Some of the pictures can inspire you for new creations.
But if you are into making STATEMENT DECORATION and like to use RECYCLED MATERIALS pieces for your home – take a look at this GIANT CROCHET GARLAND TUTORIAL.
Let me know if you have any questions about this tutorial. If you have your story about letting your creativity flow – please, share it!