Choosing the right size lampshade

Lampshades if they are too large or too small can look out of proportion, but get the size right and the effect is a balanced and designer look.

Some good shade-size rules of thumb for table lamps are:

  • The height of the shade should be about three-quarters the height of the base.
  • The width of the shade base should be roughly equal to the height of the lamp from base to fitting.
  • The shade should ideally be to at least half an inch (1.3cm) wider than the base on both sides, to keep the whole lamp looking balanced.
  • If you’re debating between two sizes, it’s usually better to go for the larger (although having said that, very thin and tall lamps can often suit smaller shades).


Meanwhile floor lamps will generally take a shade with a base diameter of 45cm (18 inches) or larger.