How to Create a Glow: Shibori Lampshade Design

shibori fabric and completed shade

I recently was lucky enough to be asked to design a large drum lampshade to light the central display area for the Artworks Gallery in South Brent, Devon.

The gallery wanted to create to create a lovely warm glow as you looked through the window, consequently I decided on a gold colour. The design of the shade was up to me.

I want to share the process with you.

The Process Step by Step

1. The Design of the Lampshade

I love making leaf shapes in shibori, therefore I decided to create a design of twining leaves and small berries.

close up of the dyed shibori fabric

A drum lampshade design requires a surprisingly long piece of fabric. The design needs to be thought about in a linear way as well as in the round. In shibori lampshade design I always have to think about the seam. Consequently the design needs to take that into account. This meant I made 3 blocks of branches and leaves so that where the seam occurs it will not be noticed. I sketched and played about with these until I knew how many I wanted to go around the drum shade 235cms deep x 20″ diameter.

2. Transfer the Design to the Fabric

I drew the shibori lampshade design at full scale on detail paper. This is for ease of transferring it to the fabric and to ensure I will get the design in the right place. With washable marker pen I drew the design on the fabric.

3. Stitching

shibori stitching of leaves
shibori stitching of leaves

In this design I have used miru shibori to create the leaves. Also I have used boshi shibori for the small berries and awase ori nui for the winding stem. I stitched all of the design and then gathered all my stitching up before dyeing.

Shibori stitching pulled up and ready for dyeing

4. Dyeing

I used a special mix of Procion dyes that I have used before. If I need to create a new colour for a project I would always do lots of colour swatch samples to find the colour I need or to match existing fabrics or decor.

Completed shade in the shop
Here is the completed lampshade hanging and illuminated in situ.

If you are interested in my lampshades and lamps please go to my Etsy Shop or to the commissions page here.

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