The best modern lampshades

We’ve sourced the best modern lampshades to help elevate a range of interior design themes

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It’s probably fair to say that lampshades are a little left out when it comes to interior design. Budget allocation doesn’t necessarily favour them, and you may have to make do with one from the likes of Homebase or B&Q for some time. 

While there’s nothing wrong with buying a lampshade from a high street hardware or homeware store, the designs of the lampshades may not be particularly inspiring, as they tend to target the general market, rather than the minority of people looking for something that little bit different. 

Many people forget that a lampshade is a great opportunity to make a statement, so rather than go for a neutral coloured fabric lampshade which will blend into the background, try out something quirky instead - perhaps wood or metal or even a sculpture piece. There are lots of online stores where you can find really unique lampshades, such as Not On The High Street, and we've sourced some of the best for out list.

Modern lampshades come in a huge variety of shapes and sizes. Our list features a diverse range so you can get a feel off what’s in the market. Drums are the most common out there, so naturally, you won’t find many on our list. Instead, we’ve wandered into the left field, and harvested a handful of oddities which will bring something different to each room in their own right - whether it’s playing with light, shape or shadow. 

1. Tom Dixon Melt pendant lightshade

A gloriously odd-shaped globe-style lampshade- for making a statement

Best for: Something totally off-piste
Dimensions: W50cmxD50cm
Material: Polycarbonate
Colour: Gold, copper, chrome
Reasons to buy
+Large statement piece+Part of a wider collection
Reasons to avoid
-Too unique for some

Ever sat there mesmerised by a lava lamp? These lampshades perfectly replicate the molten bubbles that sink slowly to the bottom and drift lazily to the top. Using vacuum metallisation, designer Tom Dixon manipulates polycarbonate into an incredible, bulbous shape. It’s then finished with metal to create a highly polished lampshade that looks like molten lava. They’re available in 3 stunning colours, thanks to the chrome, gold and copper finishes, so there should be one that harmonises with your interior style. Blending modern technology and artistic flair, this lightshade, naturally, makes our number one spot. 

2. Tom Raffield Skipper Pendant Light

An understated lampshade that plays with light and shadow

Best for: Hand crafted
Dimensions: H40cmxW62cmxD62cm
Material: Wood
Colour: Oak, walnut
Reasons to buy
+Uses natural resources+Handmade using steam
Reasons to avoid
-Use with energy saving bulbs only 

More is less with this Tom Raffield light. It’s made simply by bending oak or walnut in steam, then manipulating it to the desired shape. The end result is something that pays homage to an overly complex bow, which both intercepts light in places and allows it through in others, leaving a beautiful shadow on your walls and ceiling. Choose between light oak or darker walnut and an adjustable cord is included so you can drop the light down to your desired height for the perfect eye-catching feature. 

3. Brushed Copper Lampshade With Coloured Linings

A classic lampshade with a modern twist

Best for: Flash of colour
Dimensions: Diameters between 25cm-70cm
Material: Flame retardant PVC
Colour: Copper exterior, mix of interior colours
Reasons to buy
+Range of lining colours available+Blends classic with modern
Reasons to avoid
-All colours are bold and bright 

This light may be classic in shape, but the bold choice of lining colours certainly brings it into the 21st century. The drum itself is made from brushed copper, giving it a classic edge, but the bright interior fabric rips away its classic appearance and turns it into something bold and brassy, perfect for modern homes. Whether you fancy hot pink, aqua or sunshine yellow, take you pick according to your current colour scheme. 

4. Twisted Lasercut Wooden Lampshade No.2

This fascinating lampshade plays with lines and curves

Best for: Precision design
Dimensions: H39cmxD25cm
Material: MDF Laser cut
Colour: Wood
Reasons to buy
+Very intricate design+Creates interesting wall and ceiling patterns
Reasons to avoid
-Too alternative for some 

The 69 pieces of wood are cut from a laser machine, so naturally, this lampshade is all about precision. An immense amount of thought has gone into creating its shape, which plays with lines and curves to create a standout lampshade which won’t fail to draw attention. The wood pattern intercepts and disperses the light to produce a pattern on your wall and ceiling, which intentionally or not, looks very similar to a recognised Harry Potter symbol. 

5. GRANDE Medium White/Gold Tapered Lampshade

Adding subtle contrast to white, clean interior designs

Best for: Minimalists
Dimensions: H19cmxD38cm
Material: Cotton, foil
Colour: White, gold interior
Reasons to buy
+Lifts white, minimalist decor+Emits a warm glow
Reasons to avoid
-Don’t get it dirty

If you love white, minimalist interiors, you’ll love this tapered lampshade from Habitat, which features a gold interior for contrast and glow. It’s pretty universal, and will work well as a main lampshade or as a floor or table lampshade, giving you freedom to switch things up whenever you like. Because it’s white fabric, you’ll need to be extra careful around it to keep it pristine, which makes us think it’s best suited for being up in the air!

6. House by John Lewis Easy-to-fit Harvey Shade

A quirky light that looks like three upside down bowls

Best for: Simple statement piece
Dimensions: H18cmxD35cm
Material: Metal
Colour: White
Reasons to buy
+Subtly statement+Easy to fit
Reasons to avoid
-Light is directed downwards 

We’re not sure if John Lewis intentionally sought to make a light that looks like three upside down bowls stuck together, but it sure works. This light, too, lends itself to homes with clean, minimalist interiors with its simple, yet stylish design and painted finish. Due to the curve of the bowl, light is directed downwards, which makes it a great feature spotlight, whether it’s above a table or reading area. 

7. Verity Easy-to-fit Ceiling Shade

A teardrop lampshade that plays with curves

Best for: Elegance
Dimensions: H30cmxW22cm
Material: Glass, brass
Colour: Clear
Reasons to buy
+Intricate and elegant+Easy to install
Reasons to avoid
-Fairly heavy 

If you like the look of the Twisted Laser Cut lampshade but find it too alternative for your home, you may want to take a closer look at this one. It plays with curves, but this time it’s a bronze cage which creates the effect, while the glass teardrop inside accentuates it and makes it look classic and stylish. Many reviewers used this lampshade in the hallway, as it creates a dramatic entrance way, while others compliment the way in which it creates shadows on the walls and ceiling. 

8. little home at John Lewis Easy-to-fit Shark Ceiling Pendant Shade

The list wouldn’t be complete without something for the kids

Best for: Kids/big kids
Dimensions: L70cmxW26
Material: 100% polypropylene
Colour: White
Reasons to buy
+Detailed design+Great price
Reasons to avoid
-Energy saving bulb only

This cut-out shark light will make a great addition to a kiddy room by adding an edge of boyish excitement. Whether there’s a nautical theme, or they’re just a lover of sharks, you can’t really go wrong with this simple yet stylish lampshade, which lights up the shark’s body when it’s dark. With its zig-zag mouth and beady eye, the design has been well thought out, although reviewers say it’s a little fiddly to put together.