Your Guide to Choosing the Right Lampshade
Choosing the Right Lampshade Size and Shape
In our home, we love lighting to be practical as well as beautiful. This means picking a lamp shade that has the right proportions to work with our chosen lamp base or pendant. Our guide will answer your questions on how to choose a perfectly fitting shade for your home.
How to measure a lampshade
Before you do anything else, we recommend finding a tape measure and learning how to figure out the size of any lampshade. As a general rule, a shade that fits just right should cover the bulb holder underneath without hiding the lamp base.
To accurately size up a shade, measure across the diameter at its widest point (this tends to be at the bottom of the shade). Next, measure the total height of your shade. Make a note of both measurements and keep them to hand.
What size lampshade do I need?
When searching for the perfect option, you might find yourself asking how do I know what size lampshade to buy? And the answer is that it depends on the type of base you’re planning on pairing it with. We’ve gathered our advice on how to size up your shade for table and floor lamps as well as ceiling lights.
What size lampshade do I need for a table lamp?
There are three important things to calculate and bear in mind.
- The shade diameter should be around equal to the height of your lamp base.
- The shade’s height should be about two thirds the base height.
- For balanced proportions, we recommend choosing a shade where its widest part is greater than the width of the lamp base. For the perfect size, measure the base’s diameter at its widest point then multiply by two. This will give you your ideal shade diameter.
What size lampshade do I need for a floor lamp?
As floor lamps are usually tall (at around 100-180cm without a shade) and narrow, they tend to need much larger shades that sit around 40-60cm in diameter. Here are some simple steps to finding the right shade.
- To work out the best shade height, measure the lamp base’s height from the bottom of the bulb holder to the floor then divide this by four.
- The shade’s diameter should be similar to the base width of the floor lamp but with an extra half an inch or so on each side for a balanced look.
What size shade do I need for a ceiling light?
Before you make your decision, it’s worth considering the size of the room you’re going to use your ceiling light in and thinking about how much space you need underneath the light. We always recommend leaving around 7-8 feet between the floor and the bottom of your shade so you can walk comfortably underneath. These steps will help you find the right size shade for your ceiling light.
- To calculate the clearance, you must find the overall drop height from your ceiling to the bottom of the shade first. Start by measuring from the ceiling to the light fitting where the bulb will be, then add this to the drop length of your shade. Next, measure the total height of your room then minus the overall drop height from this to find the clearance.
- To find the perfect shade diameter that will match your room size, we recommend multiplying the width and length of your room in metres which will give you the diameter in inches. For example, if your room measures 6m x 8m, then your shade diameter should be around 48 inches.
How to find the right shade shape for my lamp?
No matter whether you’re looking for a shade to suit a floor or table lamp, we suggest the shape of the shade mirrors the base. If your lamp base is straight or square, something that echoes these lines will look best, while a round, oval or tapered base will match perfectly with a sloping shade like a French drum or empire design. Here are a few styles to choose from.