Choosing the right lamp shade

You have chosen your table lamp, now you really want to get the right lampshade to beautifully complete your light.

Gold table lamp with black drum lamp shade

So where do you start?  There are so many to choose from. Well there are a few factors to consider:

Lampshade shapes

There are numerous lampshade shapes but the most common ones are:

Empire & Straight Empire – a clean, classic shape.  With an empire shade more of the light is cast downwards.

Square – this shape can work with both modern and contemporary rooms

Drum – provides a modern and contemporary look and works really well with floor lamps.

Oval – these work really well in areas with limited space, for example a console table.

If you are looking for a statement lamp shade, Love Frankie have stunning lamp shades.  Such as this gorgeous lamp shade using Cole & Son’s iconic The Woods wallpaper.  Or this amazing animal print lampshade.  All their lamp shades are beautifully hand made and will certainly complement your lamp.

Love Frankie Cole & Son The Woods lined lamp shade

Love Frankie Animal Print Lamp Shade

Or this gorgeous hand made shade from Lamp Shade Parade, also all handmade in the UK.

lampshade parade navy tassle lamp shade

Consider your base

It’s important to consider the base of your lamp.  The general rule is to match the shape of your base and your shade.  A square base and a round lampshade generally doesn’t sit well together.  If you have a square or angular base then pair it with a square or angular shade.  A round base should be matched with a round shade.

Consider the position and the space

Where is the lamp going?  How much space do you have for the lampshade? Is space restricted or is it going on a floor lamp and has lots of space around it?

What size lampshade?

A general rule is that the shade should be 2/3 of the height of your lamp base.  The width of the shade should be roughly the same as the height of the base.  Finally the shade should be wider than the widest part of the base.

It’s important to get the proportions right otherwise it won’t look balanced.  If you already have some lamp shades around the house, try some out to gauge the right size.

how to select the right lamp shade - gold table lamp


It goes without saying that the colour should complement the rest of your room scheme.  It is also an opportunity to have a bit of fun or make a statement.  If you have a very monochrome scheme you could use lamp shades as an opportunity to inject some colour.  If you aren’t ready to go all out on colour, how about picking a lamp shade with a coloured lining?

gold table lamp with black lampshade

Our gold sculptural table lamp with a black lampshade with gold lining.  The gold lining perfectly complements the table lamp.


The function is also a very important factor.  If it’s going to be for task lighting such as reading, a light shade provides more light.  If the room or part of the room that the light is going to be in is more for relaxing, using a darker shade will great a much better ambience.

Take a look at our lighting here, including table lamps.


ARCFORM is an independent family business that handcrafts luxury and bespoke lighting to illuminate your home.

Made in our Warwickshire studio in Leamington Spa.

View our lighting collections here.


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