After giving 2 days of failed attempts to model this image (of a lamp) using Simple deform modifier; can any one help me to model it (preferably with simple deform tool)?
Here's the result I've achieved in few steps.
Add an Empty and a mesh representing the lamp's profile.
Being in Object Mode add the Screw Modifier and set Empty in the AxisOb window. Change the number of Steps to define the number of the strips (for example if your lamp consists of 12 strips, you should set the number of Steps to 24). Then apply the Screw Modifier.
Select every other strip and delete them.
Add a Simple Deform Modifier, set its type to Bend and change the Angle of a deformation a bit.
You may also use the other method to achieve it. In Edit Mode select the top vertex and snap the cursor to it. Enable the Proportional Editing Mode (O). Set the proper Proportional Size using Mouse Scroll and move the vertex horizontaly a bit. You can make the lamp shape look less regular using the same method.
You may now add Subsurf, Solidify and Edge Split Modifiers to make the strips look more smooth and give them some thickness.
I would highly recommend using a lattice for the deformation. A lattice will give you much more control over the simple deform, and the base mesh will still stay completely unaltered. Here are the steps I used to make the lamp shape.
Start by deleting all but one of the faces loops in a UV Sphere.
Add an empty (at the same location as the sphere) it will be used to control an array modifier.
Add an array modifier to the sphere sliver. Set the count to something around 14. Disable "Relative Offset", and set the "Object Offset" to the empty you just added.
Add a Lattice (again at the same location as the sphere object), scale the lattice up (in edit mode) to the size of the sphere. Now parent the sphere to the lattice with CtrlP > "Lattice Deform"
All that is left to do, is increase the subdivisions of the lattice (so you can shape the lamp) and then go in to the lattice's edit mode and actually shape the lamp the way you want.
After transforming some of the control points of the lattice, it will look something like this.