How to Dye Lamp Shades

Updated February 21, 2017

Coloured lamp shades can add drama and elegance in any decor. However, finding the coloured lamp shades can be quite a hassle. Instead of wasting time looking for the perfect lamp shade, buy a white one that you really like. White lamp shades can be dyed any colour—you can even mix powder dyes to create new colours—and will add just the touch of colour to your home that you were looking for.

Insert the lamp shade into the bucket to make sure that it fits well. You will want the bucket to be large enough to fit the entire shade with extra room to move.

Fill the bucket with very hot water.

Pour the powder dye into a bowl, and add 2 cups of very hot water. The hot water will dissolve the dye. Pour the dye into the large bucket of hot water.

Soak the lamp shade in warm water before placing it into the bucket—this will help the dye to colour the shade evenly.

Put on a pair of rubber gloves to prevent your skin from staining. Immerse the lamp shade into the water. Use your hand to gently swirl the lamp shade in the dye.

Allow the lamp shade to soak in the dye for at least 30 minutes. The longer it's in the dye bath, the brighter the colour will appear.

Rinse the lamp shade under lukewarm water until the water runs clear. To seal the colour in, rinse the shade off in cold water after the warm water.

Lay out a garbage bag on your counter or basement/garage floor. Set the shade on the bag, and allow it to dry for a full 24 hours.

Things You'll Need

  • Lamp shade
  • Large bucket
  • Powder dye
  • Small-bowl
  • 2 cups hot water
  • Rubber gloves
  • Garbage bag
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About the Author

Andrea Griffith has been writing professionally since 2005. Her work has been published by the "Western Herald," Detroit WDIV, USAToday and other print, broadcast and online publications. Although she writes about a wide range of topics, her areas of expertise include fashion, beauty, technology and education. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and English from Western Michigan University.