Sea Shell Crafts – Making a Lamp Shade

Sea Shell Crafts – Making a Lamp Shade

Sea shells are some of Nature’s exquisite creations. The forms and the colorations can be mesmerizing even if there are few brightly-colored ones among them. Incorporating them in making a lamp shade can be a worthwhile project.

For one thing, it is a great way of making an old lamp have a new lease of life, so to speak. Making an easy project such as this can be fun and invigorating even for those who are not artistically-inclined.


Our main materials include lots of seashells that have natural small holes in them. Best are those small seashells traditionally made into necklaces, bracelets and anklets not just by native island people but also among city dwellers.

The second important material would be an old or damaged fabric lamp shade as the base of your creation. The equipments needed would include a floral wire (a 20 gauge wire is also okay), needle pliers, and wire clippers.

First step

Remove all of the fabric from your damaged or existing old shade. With a pair of scissors, cut through the cloth and work away all the fabric.

After the removal of the fabric, work on the wires next. This may take a little but it saves money by saving an old shade and dressing it up with something new and contemporary.
For those without old lamp frames to work on, you can buy wire frames at some non-expensive retail stores.

The wires
For your lamp shade, cut pieces of 20-gauge floral wire to make the frame of the lighting fixture. Measure the distance from the top to the bottom wires of the shade.

Give a 3-inch additional. (This is the length of your 20-gauge wire). With the size of your shade, you can more or less decide how many wires would you need for the whole project. Take your first wire and bend the end up (about one inch).


Thread your first sea shell, wrapping the end wire around it. (This prevents the falling of the subsequent threaded shells.) This is one time to be creative where you can mix two or more colors together.

You can also create some patterns, if you like, by using the colored shells. Rotate colors as you go along in threading these shells. (To make a checkerboard pattern, start with opposite colors on every new thread of wire.)

Let your creative imagination run here. You can create countless designs using just the colors, textures, and forms of these shells.


If you really want color on that sea shell lamp shade you are making, you can paint the shells with the colors you want. Spray paint the finished product and avoid touching it while still wet.

After you have finished filling up the wires, attach them to your beach theme shade. Next, pull the string down and repeat the procedure on the bottom wire lamp frame. Continue repeating the process all the way through

Pull the string of Sea Shell straight down and repeat the process on the bottom wire lamp frame. Continue the process and space them the way you want.