Sep 18, 2011 - Lighting, Recycle & Reuse    6 Comments

Paper Pendant Shade

My dad was building a house and put this cute pendant/chandelier in the entry.

 The house was almost finished when a finish carpenter accidentally rammed his ladder into the light fixture!  The glass on 3 sides shattered.  With no glass and no ability to order more from the lighting company, he asked if I wanted it.  Oh yea, I wanted it.  I knew I could figure something out.

 Well, time passed and the chandelier collected dust.  I thought I’d hang it with out glass and it might look OK.  Then in a major house clean out I thought I’d see what I could sell it for on KSL (our local “better than” Craigslist).  AS I was typing the description I suggested that the purchaser could use paper to make a shade.  Why didn’t I think of that?  Oh wait, I did.  After zero interest on KSL I decided to take my own advice.  I drug my husband to Achievers, one of my fav scrapbook stores.  We Found several papers that could look cool.

After much deliberation we chose this bright cheery bold design.

It only took a few minutes to use a paper cutter and a few drops of Elmer’s Glue and the pages were in place.


Now to hang this beauty.  When we built our house we had the builder put a can light over our kitchen window sill.  Now I would like a hanging light there.  Thankfully other people have thought this through.  Ballard Designs has a conversion kit which comes with a drum or glass shade starting at $69.  Lowe’s has one without a shade for $34.  I’m going for the Lowe’s kit since I have a shade already.

Stay tuned for installed Pendant!

Before Pendant

UPDATE:  After searching for a less expensive conversion kit, yes, I am that cheap, I found one on another at Home Depot for only $10.97.  There is a difference between the HD and Lowe’s models.  The HD model is for 25lbs or less and the Lowe’s model can hold a ceiling fan!  Without the glass, my pendant weighs almost nothing, so off to Home Depot.  I had been there many times before asking for such an item but no one had ever heard of it and certainly didn’t know where it would be located.  I checked their website and it said they had 6 in stock at my local store so I went for it.  I found it just under the track lighting display, go figure.  Anyway, it was pretty simple to install, despite the horrible instructions.  In a matter of minutes it was up and shining for all to see.


A few final notes:  I left the canopy from the conversion kit white because I felt like it blended with the ceiling.  You could paint the canopy to match your fixture but the scale of this pendant would have been overshadowed by a large black canopy.  Also, if you look close in the lit up photo you can see a faint fish scale design.  This was the print on the back side of the paper.  I love the extra texture and was aware of it when I chose the paper.  Just be sure that you like BOTH sides of the paper before you install it in your shade.

Now go check your local thrift shop or as is department at your local home center and see what you can make!



  • That looks amazing! I love it!

    • Jamie, I am loving it even more now that it is up! The light is much softer and is a great night light to have on in the kitchen, and sooo easy too.

  • I came here through Vintage Revivals blog crush link party. I like your little french house and this idea is awesome.

  • Great Job! we are moving into our new house in a month and we also have can lights in several places. i’ve been looking to convert them also. Can you go into more detail on the conversion? I cannot tell much from the one on HD website. Thanks!

  • looking good

  • nice post

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