Collage Lampshade

With a plain lampshade and your own photographs or paper odd and ends, you can light up a mixed-media collage with this project.

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Lisa Lamoreaux of Renton, Wash., combines her lifelong love of painting with her passion for collecting odds and ends to create these unique lampshades.

Materials and Tools:

paper lampshade with a plastic inner lining
acrylic gel medium
tissue paper
printed napkins
antique music
antique foreign books
transparency film
image to transfer
paint brush
acrylic paint
acrylic glaze


1. Paint the inside of the lampshade with acrylic glaze in a soft yellow with a rough brush that allows the brushstrokes to show.

2. Use acrylic gel medium and a brush to adhere layers of napkins, tissue paper, antique music, books and fabric bits to the outer surface of the lampshade in a random fashion. Encourage wrinkles. (To use three-ply napkins, separate the layers and use the outer, most color-saturated layer). Allow to dry.

3. Transfer chosen image(s) to transparency film using a color photocopier. Favorite photos and found images can be used, too.

4. Cut out the images to be used and arrange them to create a unique scene.

5. Adhere the transparency film image, ink side down, to the dry lampshade with vellum tape.

6. Arrange and adhere more napkins, music, words and tissue paper over the transparency film images to incorporate the background and the foreground.

7. Create mixtures composed of acrylic gloss medium and acrylic paint in raw umber, iron oxide yellow, and iridescent gold. Make it thin enough to be transparent.

8. Paint the glaze mixtures over the entire surface of the lampshade to join the design elements. Concentrate the raw umber into the wrinkles to give it an aged patina.


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