First, remove the fabric from your shade, leaving just the metal frame. Gather all your slides together, choosing which ones you’ll use for the project. Keep the same color palette, the same theme, or pick randomly. Then determine how many slides you need for your shade. Fifty slides will make a nice lamp (10 across, 5 down) but it depends on how large your frame is.
Next, clean the slides to remove any residue. Cut the diffusion gel into 1.5-by-1.5-inch squares. With a permanent glue stick, glue the gel to the back of each slide, covering the image (but don’t let the glue touch the actual slide; see above).
Then place a heavy book on the slides overnight to be sure the gel sticks. (The diffusion gel filters the light through the slides and makes for a more finished look.)
Once the glue is dry, use a 1/16-inch drill bit to drill holes in all four corners of every slide, plus two more on each side, about 1/8 inch from the edges. You’ll have six holes total in each slide (see above). Be sure the holes are in the same location on each one so that the final project looks uniform. (Owens’s tip: Drill all six holes into one slide, making a template. Then, with a mechanical pencil, mark the other slides through the holes in the first slide so you can see where to drill.)
Finally, start hanging your slides. Owens first attaches jump rings on the top rung of the lamp’s frame. Then she attaches jump rings to the first row of slides and connects the two (see above). Be sure to twist the jump rings open (two pairs of pliers is handy for this). Don’t pull them open and push them closed, or they’ll snap. To finish, attach jump rings to the rest of the slides and hang them across the top of the frame first, then work your way down.
Try these directions using playing cards, transparencies, colored acrylic, photo negatives, game tiles (like Scrabble) or paint sample cards.