Now available at checkout

Dorval lighting logo
  • Star 40 years experience
  • Star 3-Generation family business
  • Star Made in Britain

March 29th, 2023

Your Ultimate Guide to Ceiling Lampshades

Multicoloured lampshades

Looking for the perfect ceiling light? We’ll guide you through key considerations, including:

  • Ideal room dimensions
  • Perfect drop for ceiling height
  • Optimum lighting levels
  • Available styles

Choosing the right ceiling light is crucial for enhancing your home’s design. Trust Dorval Lighting’s ceiling lampshade guide to help you make ‘light’ work of it! 

How to choose the best lamp shades for any room

Choosing the best lampshades for any room can be a daunting task, but with careful consideration, it can be a simple and enjoyable process. There are several factors to keep in mind, such as the colour, shape, material, size, placement, proportion, and aesthetic of the lampshade.

When selecting a lamp shade, it’s important to choose one that is proportionate to the size of the lamp base and the room it will be placed in. A shade that is too small or too large will look out of place and can disrupt the overall balance of the space. To determine the right size, measure the height and width of the lamp base and choose a shade that is approximately two-thirds the height of the base.

What size lampshade is best for a ceiling lamp?

To determine the best size lampshade for a ceiling lamp, consider the following:

  • The size of the lamp base: The lampshade should be proportional to the lamp base. As a general rule, the shade should be wider than the widest part of the lamp base, but not so wide that it extends beyond the edges of the base.
  • The height of the ceiling: A high ceiling can accommodate a larger shade, while a low ceiling may require a smaller shade.
  • The purpose of the lamp: If the lamp is primarily for functional lighting, choose a shade that allows for maximum light output. If the lamp is intended more for ambient lighting, a softer shade may be appropriate.

Generally speaking, we recommend that a ceiling lampshade should have a diameter of 16-20 inches for a medium-sized room, and a diameter of 22 inches or more for larger rooms or high ceilings.

How to choose the right lampshade shape

Choosing the right lampshade shape can be just as important as selecting the base. Here’s an overview of some common lampshade shapes:

Drum lampshades: A drum lampshade looks like a snare drum, with a circular ring on the top and bottom, this shape has vertical sides to give it a cylindrical silhouette.

Large lampshades: If you’re looking for a lampshade that can handle a larger base without looking disproportionate, the large lampshade is a good choice with its elongated design and narrower proportions

Table lampshades: The overall appearance and ambience of a room can be significantly influenced by the design of a table lampshade, which can range from simple and elegant to striking 

Ceiling lampshades: A room’s atmosphere and appearance can be shaped by the design of a ceiling lampshade, which can vary from simple and understated to intricate and ornamental. 

Choosing your lamp shade colour and pattern

Choose lamp shade prints and colours that you like, regardless of trends. For a bold statement, go for patterns and embellishments, while smooth and pleated designs offer contemporary and traditional styles, respectively. 

When buying for a specific space, consider practicality with empire shapes or brighter tones. Lamp shades can be easily changed, so switch them up with the seasons or for a quick room update.

How do I choose the lampshade material?

At Dorval, we stock all the most popular lampshade materials, including silk, cotton, and linen. But which one is right for your room? Let’s find out.

Silk lampshades: Opt for a neutral-toned designer silk lampshade for a sleek, contemporary touch to your decor. The warm, natural glow of silk provides a cosy ambience. Silk lampshades can be rolled or gathered, creating a pleated texture that adds a touch of tradition. These shades work well with classic bases and vintage-style rooms.

Cotton lampshades: Cotton lampshades are a great option due to their durability, versatility, and ease of cleaning. They can be used to create any desired ambience based on their colour and shape. 

Linen lampshades: Linen lampshades come in plain colours or with ikat prints, and are available in gathered styles on our website. Linen is lighter than velvet and has a slightly rough texture, creating a relaxed, natural feeling. Consider a stonewashed linen shade for added character.

Find your new ceiling lampshade at Dorval 

At Dorval Lighting, we specialise in creating bespoke lampshades that perfectly complement your lamps and your decor. With over four decades of experience, you can trust Dorval to have (or create) the perfect ceiling lampshade for you.

If you’re still unsure which lampshade is right for you, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. Our team of experts is always happy to help you find the perfect lampshade to complete your interior decor.