Its not always possible to buy a complete base and shade and when this is the case, some of us are put of buying a beautiful base for fear of making the wrong selection of shade. Either we lack the confidence to make the right choice or we fear compromising the amazing base for an average shade.

The right shade can transform a simple base while the wrong design can make even the most gorgeous lamp look badly proportioned or unsuited to the room’s use and decor.

Here are some tips for making the right choice of lamp shade:

Plan the proportions
Roughly speaking, you want a shade that is about two thirds the height of the base. This ratio makes sure the lamp doesn’t look too top- or bottom-heavy.

Think about shape
A good rule of thumb is to match the shade to the shape of the lamp base. So if you have a circular base, choose a circular drum shade. If the base is square, choose a square shade, or one with an angular, tapered design.

Square shades can add a real contemporary feel to a room. Dont be afraid of square shades!

Mirror the furniture
It’s also a good idea to choose a shade that matches not only the shape of the base, but the shape of the furniture it’s displayed on.

Complement colour
If your lamp base is very decorative or brightly coloured, a simple white shade is often the best choice, as it allows the base to take centre stage.

Be darkly dramatic
If the lamps are working more as accent lights, rather than as task lighting or to boost the room’s light levels, then a darker shade is fine.