The Rant: Chandelier Bulbs and Chandelier Shades Do Not Go Together

Filed under:It's My Life,Not Cool,Rants — posted by Anwyn on January 27, 2008 @ 10:30 pm

I bought a pretty, tiny lampshade in the Salvation Army store one time because I liked its design and colors and it was cheap. I bought a lamp on eBay to go with it. They coordinate in size and style. You know what chandelier shades look like, right? And the mechanism by which they’re supposed to attach to the light bulb? A little wire clip. Well, you can take it from me that these shades do not attach to the bulbs they’re supposed to go with. The bulbs are too big; the clip on the shade slides right off.

These are the bulbs that the shade’s clip actually latches right onto: Four- to seven-watt night light bulbs, which are utterly useless for any purpose other than their stated use in night lights, which are neither needed nor wanted in this house. I want to use my pretty little lamp to shed 40 watts on my work without taking up much space on my small work surface, but nooooo. Shade won’t stay on the 40-watt chandelier bulb.

I’m mostly just ranting about a minor domestic problem, but if you know how to get around this, or where to find 40-watt bulbs shaped like night-light bulbs (also the same as older Christmas lights), let me know.


  1. Try Home Depot. If they don’t have the bulbs you want, nobody does. In that case buy a $1.99 shade with the clip you want from WalMart, and swap out the clip on your shade.

    Comment by nk — January 28, 2008 @ 6:41 am

  2. Yeah, I’ve checked Home Depot. No go. I don’t think they make bulbs that small in wattage that high. The other trouble is, I don’t know of a clip that will hold to those chandelier bulbs. The clip I’ve got is the one that’s supposedly *meant* for bulbs that shape. It’s just a very poor design.

    Comment by Anwyn — January 28, 2008 @ 8:52 am

  3. Then make your own, girrrl. Get yourself some easily bendable wire, a pair of pliers (get the best you can afford not some Chinese junk) and jury rig what you need.

    Comment by nk — January 28, 2008 @ 9:59 am

  4. Now that’s a pain! Maybe that’s why the lampshade was at the Salvation Army.

    I have a lamp and lampshade that I bought together. The lamp was in the nursery, and the lampshade got dirty. The lamp is still useful, but it’s a small lamp and no lampshade of the right dimensions will fit on a normal light bulb, which the lamp requires. After looking everywhere, I finally stuck the dirty one back on. I get credit for trying.

    I vote for getting a cheap one and doing a little swap-out on the lamp parts. Actually, you can probably get the required lamp shade parts at Lowe’s or Home Depot….

    Good luck. Now you can say you’re an electrician.

    Comment by Anne — January 28, 2008 @ 12:51 pm

  5. I’m not at all sure they make clips that will fit these particular bulbs–since this one (and its many bretheren) is *supposed* to, but doesn’t. Craziness.

    Comment by Anwyn — January 29, 2008 @ 5:14 pm

  6. You need to get a bulb that is a little larger than the ‘night light’ bulb and the clip on the mini shade will fit perfect. I got my 4 pack of bulbs at Wal-Mart for $1.87. This is called a decorative bulb that is 40 watt with a smaller bulb tip, not the pointy tip. Good luck!!

    Comment by kat — May 1, 2008 @ 9:44 pm

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image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace