Here’s What You’ll Need

  • One short white paper drum shade, 11” x 12” x 8”H (with a washer fitter*)
  • One tall white paper drum shade, 8” x 9” x 10”H (with a washer fitter*)
  • One ceiling canopy
  • 3 feet of white pendant cord
  • One porcelain socket
  • 2 cable grips
  • 3 yards of brush fringe
  • 2 yards of tassel fringe
  • 2 yards of metallic ribbon trim
  • Glue gun
  • Scissors

*Also known as a spider fitter, a washer fitter is a type of lampshade hardware. It’s made up of brass spokes joined by a round fitting in the center. It’s important to use shades with washer-type centers for this project so that the cable grips will hold them in place.

Choosing Trims

First things first: the trimmings. After experimenting with a few options I landed on a combination of brush fringe and tassel fringe, combined with a metallic ribbon. Although you don’t have to use the exact trims I did, there are a few things to keep in mind when you’re picking out trim. First, you’re going to need one really “puffy” trim, like brush fringe, to add dimension. Also, you’re going to want a metallic trim for a hint of silver. Personally, I think it’s better to use the metallic trim sparingly. For my third trim, I chose a tassel style because it added a texture without competing with the pouf of the brush fringe. I limited myself to three styles of trim because I found that repeating them in different rows helped to harmonize the look.

Applying Trims

To create a tiered effect I used two sizes of drum shades. Begin by gluing trim to the larger but shorter shade, completely covering it in horizontal rows. It’s a good idea to start gluing at the top and work your way down so that the rows are even. Next, apply trim to the bottom half of your smaller but taller shade. Don’t worry about the top half of this shade; it will be concealed under the larger shade once the lamp is assembled. To help keep the rows even on the smaller shade I started gluing at the bottom.

Tip: It’s a good idea to test out trim arrangements before you start gluing them in place. Using multiple rows of one trim can also affect the amount of yardage needed.


Assembling Your Shades

Wire your socket to the cord according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Next, screw a cable grip onto the pendant cord, about 2 inches above the base of the socket.  Now thread the cord through the central hole of the small shade so that the shade rests on top of the cable grip. To finish, attach a second cable grip about 2 inches above the first, and thread the cord through the central hole of the larger shade.

Tip: You can easily adjust the spacing of the shades on the cord by loosening the cable grips and adjusting as needed until you find the right placement.

Hanging Your New Pendant

Now you’re ready to the hang the light. If you’re confident in your ability, attach the ceiling canopy and hardwire the pendant into place. If you have any reservations at all, it’s a good idea to hire a pro to do this part for you!

Tip: Attaching a decorative ceiling medallion painted the same color as the cord accentuates the look.


Socket, canopy, pendant cord and grips from Color Cord Co.
Shades from Just Shades
Similar brush and tassel fringe from Deco Accessories
Metallic trim from Joyce Trimming
Ceiling medallion from Home Depot

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