If you’ve ever thrown something out, then had second thoughts and pulled it out of the garbage to give it a second chance, this post is for you. Because that’s how my vintage inspired painted lampshade came to be.
Below is a picture of what the shade looked like pre-makeover (and post-garbage-can rescue).
I didn’t hate it. I just didn’t love it. And it wasn’t in the best of shape. The fabric was faded and the gold trim was flaking off.
But as the wheels in my brain started to spin, I wondered what the shade would look like painted black.
Unfortunately, after the paint job, I still didn’t love it.
The black paint covered the faded fabric and flaking trim, but the shade still wasn’t my style. It looked a little plain, like a blank canvas. I felt like it needed some kind of a graphic element added to it. Maybe a number or a word? Or some vintage typography?
When I went online to look for inspiration, I was immediately smitten with this Blatz beer logo printed on the side of an old crate.
Look at that B! 🖤 And that Z! 🖤 Be still my vintage-typography-loving heart. 🖤 🖤 🖤
Sizing and printing the image
To transfer the logo from my computer screen to my lampshade, I downloaded the image, opened it in Photoshop and resized it to fit on my 8-inch-high lampshade.
Then I saved the image as a PDF, opened it in Acrobat, and printed it out at 100 percent. And if you’re wondering why I went through all those steps, it’s because the image was too wide to fit on one sheet of typing paper, and Photoshop wouldn’t allow me to tile it out onto two sheets, but Acrobat would. (There’s always a workaround.)
Once I had the two halves of the image printed out, I taped them together.
Tracing and transferring
Next, I pulled out my stash of thrifted tracing paper.
(I’m not sure if you can still buy this stuff new. I’ve been picking it up from secondhand sources. It works great for transferring images, and best of all it comes in assorted colors, so you can always find one that works — unlike carbon paper which only comes in black and is pretty much useless when you want to transfer onto a dark background.)
To transfer the logo, I just slid a piece of white tracing paper between the printout and the lampshade and traced with a sharp pencil.
Because my lampshade was a few inches smaller in diameter on top than it was on the bottom, the image didn’t fit perfectly. But I had enough leeway that I was able to make it work. I just cut the logo in half and scooched each section into place.
Here’s what lampshade looked like with the outlines of the logo transferred to it:
Painting and finishing
With the design transferred, I just had to fill in the outlines with paint.
I used Rust-Oleum Chalked paint in Linen White. (The black base coat was done with Rust-Oleum Chalked paint in Charcoal.)
After letting the paint dry overnight, I gave the shade a coat of Rust-Oleum clear topcoat to protect it, and it was done.
My new vintage inspired painted lampshade
Not bad for a lampshade that was plucked from the garbage, right?
In case you’re wondering, I also painted the 654 sign pictured in the background. Here’s a link to that post if you’re interested. (And I made that sign before I had discovered the wonders of dressmakers’ tracing paper, so I had to use a different method to transfer that image to the sign blank.)
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