DIYdiy projects

diy project: kate’s sculptural pendant lamps

by Kate Pruitt

these are two versions of modified ikea lamps, inspired by several designers i’ve seen over the years that use felt to create amazing textures. felt is inexpensive, easy to work with, and comes in a lot of great colors. i love how you can mold it and it will stay in place, almost like clay. these are also a fun project to share with kids since it involves cutting out hundreds of felt circles! i didn’t try it out, but i think these would work equally well on a regular lamp shade for a modern table or floor lamp. click here for the full post with instructions- happy crafting! –kate

What You’ll Need:

Ikea “melodi” pendant lamp ($9.99)
– felt (1-1.5 yards or about 20 felt sheets from a craft store)
– hot glue gun
– scissors


1. Cut out many, many felt circles, approximately one or two inches in diameter. They can vary a little and do not need to be perfect circles.

2. For the cream ultra-layered petal lampshade, fold the felt circle in half and put a small line of glue down the center crease. Place petal down onto shade and secure the crease to the surface. Keep adding as many as you want, and overlap some to fill the entire surface.

3. For the white petal pattern shade, start with your outer layer of petals and work into the center. Place a small dot of glue on the back of the petal and place on the shade. Keep adding and overlapping petals until surface is full.

That’s it!

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  • I LOVE this. I just learned how to make these really pretty felt flowers and they would look great on one of these lamps. I’m going to try it as soon as I can get to IKEA. Thanks for the fab idea!!!

  • They are undoubtedly beautiful but all I can think of when I look at them is “Man, they’d be hell to dust!”

  • wow, this is awesome, i actually have one of those ikea pendants sitting arround because somehow i got a little orange marker on it! i should try this! great post!

  • these are stunning. beautiful idea kate! i will definitely try this. i think it would even work w/ some of those typical pleated shades you can find at thrift stores etc.

  • Do you ever have a problem with the felt or glue heating up? I would think you would need to be careful about the type of lamp and bulb on which you choose to put a lovely lampshade like this…

  • I adore these lamps – almost on my way to IKEA to buy the lamp and get going! Cool idea – and as you say it looks like a great project to do with kids!

  • These lamps are lovely. I have a lot of linen laying around … do you think they’ll be too flimsy for making the cream-colored lamp?

  • Here’s a time-saving tip. Instead of cutting out all those felt circles, buy some Cosettes. (I think that’s how it’s spelled). They’re cotton makeup remover pads that are thicker than felt and have little circle patterns for extra drama.

  • I think you could use one of those Japanese circle punches, instead of scissors. You know, the ones that Martha Stewart is always recommending!

  • This is just a shot in the dark, but does anyone know where to buy that metal fern in the first shot? I remember seeing it in a Domino spread a couple of years back and lusting over it, but I have had no luck tracking it down. Any help would be appreciated.

    Love those pendant lamps too!

  • Quite pretty- in the first photo the lamp on the left looks like it’s covered in Pringles. Maybe for the kitchen….

    Is the glue secure enough for a gentle vacuuming?

  • Fantastic idea!! I too, am practically out the door to pick up supplies. This is such an amazing project. Thanks!!!

  • how do you dust these pendents? I would feel like I’d need to pick a lighter color to disguise the dust that will collect on them and then not be able to get off. Every time I see oragami-like pendants in real life, they are all dusty b/c nobody can clean them properly.

  • Yay!!! I’m “tweaking” your idea and making centerpieces for a bridal shower. You are so creative! Thanks for sharing it with us!

  • I’m just so relieved that I’m not the only one who looks at these (or any other) lovely things as thinks “OMG! dust trap!”

  • Hi Everyone! Thanks for all your feedback, I really appreciate it. Having just made these, I can’t tell you how the dust situation is just yet, but these can definitely stand up to vaccuming so that might be my plan of attack. I will keep you posted on my results!

    Also, the brass branch is from a store in northern ca, you can get the info from ruthlivingston.com I think..

  • Can I use regular fabric to add some color? Will the glue be a problem maybe showing thru, or do you think this could work?
    I love ideas like this!!! Thanks for the step by step!

  • That is brilliant!! I have been in search of some way to make the cutest lamp ever for my daughters room! Well here is my answer! They are gorgeous!

  • This was great to see. I was looking for a two dimentional art piece above my new guest house main bed. I am going to create a pattern on a canvas with lights in the back. Sooooo excited THank You!

  • I love this idea , i like to always try new things , this is going to be 1 of them :)

  • Do you think it’d be possible to apply the felt circles to a metal floor lamp, or plastic only? (our ceilings are too high for pendant lamps.)

  • Splashley: I have been trying to think of a way to hide my ugly renters overhead lighting. Thanks for the idea based on Kate’s inspiration!

  • My fiance and I just did both lamps and we are using the ivory one for our daughter Ava’s nursery – she is due in March. It took 400 ivory circles for the big Melodia lamp if anyone is interested:) But it was SOOO worth it. Wish I could post a pic but I dont have a website to link it to. If anyone is interested, you can email us at abhorman@aol,com and I am happy to share and send the pics. Both were easy, just time consuming in circle cutting but total fun and very affordable. We did the white circles on existing glass fixtures on the ceiling. The only problem we ran into was we had to change from glue gun to craft glue ( Tacky Glue) and now everything is sticking even with the heat of the bulbs. I have to say my fav now is the ivory one – it is so soft and looks like a pastry confection or something hanging over you – awesome DIY – THANK YOU!!

  • I’m about halfway through one of the folded-felt-circles lampshade, and I might have made a mistake going with a big drum shade. This thing is getting heavy!

  • We featured one of these lamps on our blog today – my sister made it using this tutorial and has some tips of her own:)

  • felt- wool- how fire resistant is it? Can I make a shade without the Ikea mold? Like a resist pot and then put a bulb straight in it? Does it get warm? Hot?

  • has anyone done this with paper? i want to do it to my dorm room but i dont want to drown out the only light in my room. also how much does the felt cost? i am very poor, haha.

  • I love this! These little pendants are already so cute, and adding felt to them just makes them around a billion times cuter! I love the way the ultra layered lamp shade looks when lit up – it’s like something out of Alice in Wonderland! Thanks for the craft idea!

  • maybe for dusting…remove shade, taking outside and use the compressed air like the type you use for the computer keyboard..just a thought!

  • this is a great idea, i made one in college that was zebra print, it looks fantastic!

  • Dust! Dirt!! Cobwebs!!! No thank you. Unless I could encase it in clear plastic but then again…