By simply scoring and folding paper, you can turn an ordinary pendant lighting kit into a contemporary showpiece. Learn how to make this affordable geometric lampshade, then hang your modern lighting in a bedroom, dining room, or office.

October 16, 2018
Read step by step instructions after the video.

Swapping your bedside lamp with a hanging pendant light is a bright way to update your bedroom plus free up surface space. However, the price of some chandeliers and hanging fixtures can max out your budget. Skip the lighting aisle at the hardware store and instead make your own affordable pendant with our modern paper lampshade. This project involves folding paper into a gorgeous geometric shape that sits over a pendant cord kit. Plus, you can choose the paper you want, so the colors and patterns are endless. Follow our instructions below to learn how to make your own origami-inspired paper lampshade.

Related: Creative Ways to Reinvent a Lampshade

  • Working time 1 hr
  • Start to finish 4 hrs
  • Difficulty Kind of Easy

What you need


How to do it

Part 1

Step 1

Cut Paper

On a cutting mat, cut two sheets of paper down to 12 x 25 inches each. We used 160 GSM paper so it would hold its shape. Glue the sheets of paper together, overlapping a half inch.

Step 2

Make Guidelines

Create the folding guidelines next. Use the ruler to mark vertical lines along the long side of the paper every 2-1/2-inches with the gold marker. You will have 20 sections altogether.

Next, draw diagonal folding lines with your marker and a ruler by following the printable template. Once finished, you should have an X intersecting every other vertical line.

Download The Free Folding Template
Step 3

Score and Fold

Score all the gold lines very gently, using the backside of the craft knife blade and ruler to keep straight. The score lines will help create a clean fold in the paper to keep the lines crisp.

Next, fold the vertical lines back and forth, accordion style. Then fold the diagonal lines along all the score marks. 

Step 4

Shape Pendant

Bring the shade into shape by working all the folds and score lines. The small triangle folds go down to create valleys. The center point where they meet comes up as a mountain peak. The full vertical line drops down as a valley as well. This will take time—work slowly and gently so as not to tear your paper.

Step 5

Attach Light and Finish

Using the hole punch, make a hole at the same spot of each small triangle valley on one end of the shade. Pull string or yarn through the holes, gather around the base of the light cord, and tie. Glue the two ends of the lampshade together to finally enclose the lamp.


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