Best Types of Lampshades for Your Living Room

Posted on October 04, 2023

Choosing a new lampshade is always an exciting task, but with so many different styles and designs to pick from, the decision isn’t always easy. 

Whether you’re searching for the perfect lampshade for a newly decorated living room or you’re looking for a fresh new shade to spruce up a space, we’re on hand to help. 

Our experts are here to provide all the tips and tricks you need to find the shade that matches your living space perfectly, and in this article, they’ve divulged all their secrets. 

Read on to learn all about shade shapes and what they mean before we take you through a few other factors you may want to consider before making that all-important purchase.

Types of Lampshades for Your Living Room 

When it comes to shapes, the options are almost endless. Choose from drum, oval, empire, coolie, square, and so much more. 


Take a look at some of our most popular styles for living room lighting below to learn more about what these shapes mean in terms of look, light, and overall design.

Drum Lampshades

Contemporary spaces go well with drum lampshades. This modern twist on a classic features vertical sides, creating a bold style that’ll never go unnoticed - even in the most ornately decorated rooms. 


Some drum lampshades have a small incline, meaning that the top of the shade is slightly smaller than the bottom. In other cases, they can remain the same width from top to bottom. We always recommend pairing drum lampshades with round or wide bases.

Oval Lampshades

Oval lampshades offer a more traditional look, but they can work well with a whole range of different design schemes. This classic shape will take on a multitude of different looks, depending on the fabric chosen to finish off this shade. 


We tend to suggest oval lampshades to customers looking for space saving lighting that doesn't compromise on style.

Square Lampshades

Contemporary, minimalist rooms make the perfect backdrop for square lampshades


Featuring clean lines and eye-catching corners, these shades will take pride in place against a more understated backdrop. 


If you’re looking for a shade to finish off a boxy-looking lamp or a lamp with straight lines, a square shade could be just what you need.

Empire Lampshades

The empire lampshade is a great all-rounder. It pairs well with a whole host of different bases. We love the combination of empire shades and ginger jar table lamps, but they look just as good with floor lamps too. 


Empire shades feature a straight gentle slope from the top of the lampshade to the bottom. It's a classic look that can be made to look more contemporary or more traditional simply by switching fabrics. 


Browse empire shades in neutral hues to keep things modern, or opt for a more ornate fabric for a luxurious look.

Coolie Lampshades

A coolie lampshade has a wide base and a narrow top. These shades are usually shorter than other shapes, and that means that the light they emit reaches far further than some of the alternatives we’ve mentioned. 


Coolie shades are perfect for spaces that need plenty of light. The shape complements compact bases well, as these shades tend to be on the shorter side.

Assess the Lighting in Your Living Room

Before you decide which shape of shade you’d prefer, think about the lighting in your living room. 


The amount of light you’re looking to create will have a real bearing on your decision, as some shades emit far more light than others. Similarly, some shapes will lighten up a much larger area than others. 

A cozy living room with a standing lamp and matching lampshade

Consider the Shape of the Lampshade 

There are so many different types of lampshade shapes to choose from, so don’t be afraid to explore all the options before you take your pick. 


Think about how various shapes might look with different bases and experiment to find a combination that you feel would work well in your space. 


For a modern, minimal space, try drum or square lampshades. If your living room has a more classic and traditional feel, you might prefer oval or empire designs.

A cozy living room filled with plans and elegant accent pieces, including a standing lamp with a unique lampshade

Look at the Size of Your Living Room

The size of a space is another factor that could have a real impact on what the best lamp might look like. 


Smaller rooms lend themselves well to space-saving designs, and for us, oval shades always come out on top if space is at a premium. However, larger rooms often cry out for more dramatic shades. 


In these cases, we often suggest shades capable of throwing out far more light into the surrounding area, like coolie shades, for example. 

Think about the Color Scheme 

Our shades come in a huge array of different fabrics and colors, so you’ll have no trouble finding the perfect hue to complement your living room. 


Think about the colors that might work well with your existing decor, bearing in mind that you could opt for something neutral that complements almost any design scheme or go all out with a brightly colored shade that draws attention the moment you walk into the room.

A wooden book shelf with an elegant lamp and matching lampshade sitting on top

Get Advice on Lampshades for Your Living Room

If you’d like further guidance on choosing the best lampshade for your living room, or you have any questions about the different types of lampshades you’ve spotted in our collections, don’t hesitate to contact our team


We’re here to help you find the perfect lampshade for your space. Just give us a call to talk through the options.