Monday, January 16, 2017

DIY Geometric lampshade

DIY Geometric lampshade using foam boards 

Hello this is Angela and I am glad to be on board at Itsy Bitsy as a DT member. I have to admit that my crafting journey started with supplies from Itsy Bitsy and I cannot help but recommend Itsy Bitsy store to anyone who asks for help with art & craft supplies. I love trying different crafts especially DIY's in minimalist forms and I always make sure I share a tutorial along with all the details so that you can try them out.

Today's tutorial is a DIY geometric lampshade, perfect for the kids nursery or your crafting table. Doesn't something handmade make you feel proud? Let's jump right to the tutorial but before that a few things about foam boards.

How to work with Foam Board :

  • Foam boards are usually about 0.5 cm thick. These do not break as such but when bent, develop creases which are permanent. They come is storeable sizes but be careful about the corners.
  • These boards are somewhat similar to thermocol boards but thankfully do not crumble into smaller pieces while cutting, that's a big plus point.
  • The best way to cut them out in desirable shapes is to use a sharp paper knife. Instead of digging the knife all the way till bottom and then trying to drag it along the line, I would recommend you to cut them out layer by layer by moving the knife across the line multiple times in the same direction. I had a few pieces which dragged while cutting out and hence has staggered edges. However, the ones I cut layer by layer came out with super smooth edge finish.
  • These boards are sensitive to paints, so be sure to use only acrylic/fabric paints. I painted them with spray paint and top layer melted off!
  • Normal glue does not stick the sheets together so a better option will be double sided tacky tapes or even silicon glue.
  • Foam boards are neither as fragile as thermocol sheets nor do they become soft like cardboards during the rainy season.
  • They are the best bet for creating 3D models for school projects and also DIYs for home.

Tutorial for making Geometric lampshades with foam boards: 

Coming back to the tutorial; these lampshades are super easy to make but calls for a little bit of patience! Links to all the supplies used are tagged at the end of this post so go ahead and try your hands on making these lampshades.

First you need to cut out isosceles triangles from these foam boards which later on needs to be arranged into the lampshade. I made two lampshades of two different dimensions. I made them out of two foam boards. The smaller shade was crafted with 8 cm triangles and the larger one with 14 cm triangles. To draw an isosceles triangle, draw a line of 14 cm, at both end points, using a protractor mark angle 60 degree and draw line to intersect into a triangle.

Next, you need to cut them out carefully. As I mentioned, keep a ruler and draw lines with your knife one over the other till the foam board is completely cut. Cut out 15 such triangles for one lampshade.

Next you need to choose the color scheme for your lampshade and how they should be arranged. Both my lampshades are different in color arrangement. My personal favorite is the smaller one.

I painted one side of the triangles with Camlin acrylic colors in cadmium green pale shade  & turquoise deep and once they were dry, I spray painted the other side with gold. But as I told you, too much spray paint kind of melted the board surface as you can see from the pic.

Arrange the triangles as shown the picture below or in any color combination as you like. Next, fix these triangle side by side by using tape at the back.( Be sure of the counts of triangles as given in the picture below - 5 triangles in layer one, another 5 triangles upside down in layer two and last layer of 5 triangles in between)

Since the foam board was not taking glue well,what I did was I used double sided tacky tape and covered them with a matching gold stripes washi tape. This is how the backside will look.

The final part is a little tricky. Help from a second person might prove advantageous for holding the lamp while you stick the dome part. Each of the triangle at the top line needs to be stuck side by side carefully.

Once all the triangles are fixed side by side, your lampshade is ready! A final touch-up on any areas that missed paints can be done right now. Add your light bulb to the lampshade ( since the triangles are stuck together with washi tape, a small hole at the top dome will allow the cable pass through.)

A few more pictures of the finished lampshade before I hang them next to my crafting table :)

Supplies used : 

Foam boards
Red tacky tape
Gold washi tape
Camlin artist acrylic color Cadmium Green pale
Camlin artist acrylic color Turquoise deep
Gold spray paint 


  1. Love this beautiful geometrical lamp shade Angela, this is sure to brighten up any space !! thanks for the tips to use the foam board !!

    1. Thankyou so much Suman :) These foam boards have endless creative opportunities.

  2. Vibrant creation! And thanks for all those tips on using foam board!

    1. Thankyou Karthika :) Glad you loved them :)

  3. Wow! These look amazing Angela!

  4. Looks like so much fun! Vibrant & awesome creation, sure to brighten up any decor!