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Lamp Shade Types

Lamp shade styles and shapes Article by Jim Hoyle

Coolies... Drums... Bells... is this about Chinese music or lamp shades ?


Some say that a lampshade makes the lamp and therein lies much truth. A gorgeous lamp with the wrong or ill fitting lampshade is most likely an eyesore. The same gorgeous lamp with an OK lampshade may be acceptable but far from being lovely.

This list shows images of the most popular lamp shade types along with a description.

1) Empire lamp shades Empire lamp shade have a straight sloped side. The shade slope is not exaggerated but rather at a traditional tapered angle.

2) Bell lamp shades  Bell lamp shade have sides that are curved not straight.

3) A drum lamp shade can be either a tall drum lamp shade Drum lamp shade or shallow drum lamp shade Shallow drum lamp shade and both are shaped similar to a barrel or cylinder with somewhat straight sides.

4) A coolie lamp shade  Coolie lamp shade has an exaggerated bottom diameter compared to a narrow top diameter thus resembling a Chinese coolie hat.

5) Square lamp shades  Square lamp shade you are likely familiar with but they come in a surprising number of interesting variations.

6) Rectangular lamp shades   Rectangle Lamp Shade are oblong with right angles, cut corners or inverted corners.

7) Oval lamps shades  Oval lamp shade are oblong and rounded like a racetrack.

8) Hexagon lamp shades  Hexagon lamp shade have six sides.

9) Bouillotte lamp shades Bouillotte lamp are a variations of a tapered shalllow drum, named after the French card game where this lamp and shade had its origin.

10) Six (6) way floor lamp shades 6 way floor lamp shade also called "Junior" made especially to fit 6 way 3 arm and reflector floor lamps that became popular during mid century

11) Uno lamp shades  UNO lamp shade hexagon shape have a fitter that slips over or screws on the electrical socket, commonly found on bridge arm floor lamps and others.

12) Mica lamp shades  Mica lamp shade are made from genuine mica which is mined from the earth, formed into sheets then handcrafted into lovely mica lampshades.


13) Rattan wicker lamp shades Rattan wicker lamp shade handcrafted in a variety of natural materials (bamboo, rattan, sea grass).

And much more...  There are hexagon bells and squares with inverted cut corners. There are V notch bell drums and most any other combinations of features that you may imagine...

It may be obvious that this could go on limited only by our imagination and the makers skill. Then there are custom shades in great variety and complexity.

Good luck on selecting your next lamp shade.