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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

tutorial for yarn covered lamp shade & letters in nursery



It’s been a year since I finished Houston’s nursery… a labor of love that I have remained crazy about ever since. I knew I wanted a “whimsical” nursery for our little boy – colorful, fun details with no real color theme or theme of any kind really! Pastels and bright colors spray the gray painted walls of this room. In words, it sounds like a crazy combination that would never exist harmoniously, but I think it became the perfect balance to see my little baby through to his toddler years!


To my surprise, yarn just so happened to become a most valuable player in a couple of stand out DIY crafts in his nursery. I had never used yarn in any project before this and I was extremely delighted with how these crafts turned out.


Nusery Favorites


The lamp I started with was cute on it’s own, purchased new from Marshall’s, but was no where near the “whimsical” I was going for in the nursery.

A picture with flash on the left and without on the right:




I used my trusty old acrylic paints to paint each letter on the lamp base. This was TRULY the labor of love part – staying within the lines, needing several coats each, getting the grooves inside the letters with the white – SHEW! It makes me tired just thinking of it. But back in those pre-baby days, I had the hours to spend on projects… not so much anymore :)


The entire project I did on the coffee table while catching up on hours of DVR. I’m nothing if not a multi-tasker ;)


Before I started painting with acrylic, I spray painted the base with a primer to help the acrylic stick. When I was finished painting, I sealed the base with spray-paint clear gloss which will help it last and gave it more of a professional looking finish. Both very important steps!


Now for the yarn – I just started wrapping!

I used no other tools or products but yarn to cover the lampshade… So EaSy!


My personal wrapping technique: I unwound a very long piece of yarn and cut it from the spool so I wouldn’t have to maneuver the entire yarn ball around the lamp shade and wires each time. {I also detached the shade from the base and just held it in my lap.} When the piece would run out, I would cut another long length of yarn and just tie the new piece onto where the old left off and trimmed the excess. I did this for the entire circumference of the shade until finished and tied the last piece onto a neighboring yarn thread.

The places where I tied pieces of yarn together sometimes happened to be on the inside of the shade, sometimes on the outside. They are so barely noticeable and there is no reason to try and rack your brain on how long each piece of yarn should be to be able to tie it off on the inside of the lamp shade.


No glue, no sewing - just wrapping, wrapping, wrapping! If we should ever decide that the yarn is too much when he’s older, it can be removed in 5 seconds with just scissors. There was no damage at all done to the new lampshade underneath – this is also what makes this a perfect project for remaking an old, damaged shade!


So inexpensive, bright, whimsical, and unique! Houston is the only boy in the world with a lamp like this one :)



  I was ECSTATIC when this was finished. I LOVE lamps, they can add so much character to a room and really finish the design and look you’re going for. I had looked at so many beautiful nursery lamps and their price tags were just too hefty for designs I would only be using in a nursery for a limited number of years.


This lamp can either follow him into his big boy room or play room with it’s bright colors or stay for the next nursery inhabitant ;)


{and now I’ll stop gushing about a lamp as I’m starting to sound a little like Brick from Anchorman right now…}




As for the “Baby Love” letters, I started with thick chip-board style letters like these from Hobby Lobby and a foam heart:


The heart I had previously made for Valentine Decorations years before:




Again I wrapped and wrapped, strategically covering every piece. The corners were sometimes impossible to keep the yarn from sliding off so I would use just Elmer’s glue to zig-zag a little yarn over the “peak” of the corner. Not noticeable in the least!


These letters were p.e.r.f.e.c.t. for this awkward little “bend in the wall” that was left bare. They’re so light, I was able to hang them on just thumb tacks!



I’m thinking of visiting Hobby Lobby tomorrow and I’ll try to take a picture of the brands/types of yarn I used for each project and update. The yarn on the letters was a much “fuzzier” softer type of yarn…. which I’m sure the expert knitters/crafters out there know a name for?


I hope you got a little inspiration from these super inexpensive crafts for my baby love♥







Linking up:

The Shabby NestWhipperberrycraftionaryDIY Show OffSkip To My LouSumo's Sweet StuffThe Girl CreativeBeyond The Picket Fence


  1. I love the idea about wrapping a lampshade in yarn. Our living room lamps need an new look and a neutral yarn just might do the trick!

  2. if you ever want to sell the lamp let me know! I LOVE IT! I wish I could find one myself!

  3. Very cute! I just a small A for Alaina's room with pink yarn...Great minds ;)

  4. Lovely idea. I love how the lamp turned out. Thanks for linking up at Friday Fun Party. :)

  5. Super cute! You really did a great job painting all those letters. I really like the cute little horse on the table too. Are there words written on that? I was trying to figure it out.

    Thanks for sharing.


  6. Hello!

    I found your blog through a friend of mine who reads it and I love it!! As a fellow newlywed and crafter, your blog is such a fun read!

    I am definitely going to make these yarn letters for my niece. They just opened a Hobby Lobby by me in New Jersey and I am OBSESSED!

  7. So cute !! I found you on Google.. I'm about to try yarn wrapping my chandelier shades. Good luck with your new baby. Thanks!


I just shared my thoughts, I'd love to hear you share yours! {Besides, I'm tired of listening to the voices in my head.} I kid, I kid... ;)