Ideas for repurposing old hand fans

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Answered

I have several hand fans that I recently inherited. Many of them are in bad shape. I would like to find a way to use parts of them. Does anyone have any ideas about repurposing antique hand fans?

q ideas for repurposing old hand fans, repurposing upcycling
q ideas for repurposing old hand fans, repurposing upcycling
q ideas for repurposing old hand fans, repurposing upcycling
  15 answers
  • Erin Erin on Nov 11, 2016
    They'd be interesting in a mixed media art project. I'm thinking a shadow box type project

    • Stephanie corley Stephanie corley on Nov 11, 2016
      I agree. The broken fans could be folded so the "needing reapir" areas are not seen. They will be beautiful on display.

  • Wendy Aleman Wendy Aleman on Nov 11, 2016
    Thanksgiving is coming up, why not make them turkeys and use them as centerpieces?

    • Pos4151991 Pos4151991 on Nov 11, 2016
      The feathers are dry and every time I touch them bits of feathers go everywhere. Nice idea though

  • Ruth Ruth on Nov 11, 2016
    I would try hair spray in an almost-hidden area. If that stabilizes the feathers, it might be worth getting some fixative spray from an art store. (I used hairspray on my drawings in college--too cheap for the art store!) Anyhow, if you have any Victorian or Baroque-style furniture, mount the fans around it with hot glue on the wall, to make a vignette. You could combine various fan bits for interest--i.e. feathers, then a mother-of-pearl piece, then a fabric bit. This is such a beautiful collection!! It should be seen more of the time than just at holidays!!

  • Erin Erin on Nov 12, 2016
    Yikes! Hot glue on the WALL!?

  • Mary Lou Pearce Mary Lou Pearce on Nov 13, 2016
    I agree with the idea of stabilizing the feathers, but hot glue on the wall? I would start with a circle of light plywood or heavy cardboard. They I would glue the fans open in concentric circles on it, overlapping to hide damage. As for the broken fan pieces, you could apply them to old picture frames to make them unique.

  • L L on Nov 13, 2016
    Buy or make a shadow box then mount them inside as antique objects. You can get mounting ideas from the museums displaces.

    • DORLIS DORLIS on Nov 15, 2016
      HOT FLASHES, NOW ADD HOT FLASHES FROM CANCER, YOU END UP CHANGING PILLOWS 3 - 4 TIMES A NIGHT AND SHEETS 2 TIMES. i HAD ELECTRIC FANS GOING ALL OVER THE HOUSE AND KEEP HAND FANS EVERYWHERE. I have a collection of metal folding fans for the car and my purse, boxes of them saved just in case. I would refinish the half good ones and use them, forget bout displaying them, can't get to them.

  • Laura Dean Laura Dean on Nov 13, 2016
    I have collected a few fans over the years when I was having hot flashes. When they broke I just glued them open and hung them on my bedroom wall. Makes a nice collection. If you can add a painting of a woman with a fan looks twice as good. Some of yours could be put in a shadow box frame.

  • Carey Carey on Nov 13, 2016
    I would make or buy a box frame that you could use to create a vignette in with your fans and take a pretty victorian type card and write the history behind them on it to add to your vignette. Thus you have a long lasting family heirloom. Be sure to get glass for it that protects from UV light. You don't want them to deteriorate further. In addition, I would check with a museum curator to ask what would be the best way to preserve them. You can use the nice parts for visible areas and the broken parts behind other part of the fans to craft your vignette.

  • Karla Mathis Bostic Karla Mathis Bostic on Nov 15, 2016
    I would use a room decider. The ones with thin wood or material, use very thin board in place of slots, stain or paint a color that compliments your fans. Then along the top of the wood open one fan out and attach it however you prefer, using hot glue, or small hooks, brackets to hold them in place. Then on bottom of that slat of wood open one in the opposite direction, carrying on the pattern till the end of that section. If the fans are of high quality or sentiment, you could put a piece of clear acrylic to seal it, or perhaps even glass. It really depends on the price you want to invest, and how much sentimental value they have. It would make a gorgeous display next to your vanity or such so that it could be seen and not touched.

  • Kim Salmi Kim Salmi on Nov 16, 2016
    I love the shadow box idea from L .... probably because I had the same thought jump into my head LOL ..lined perhaps with a soft stripe or very small print paper for background ...nothing too loud to take away from the fans themselves ....despite their conditions ..they are lovely mementos ..nice to see they are still being appreciated : )

  • Sally-Charles Evans Sally-Charles Evans on Nov 16, 2016
    I repaired some I have and they are on the wall in our bedroom.

  • Mary Mary on Nov 16, 2016
    My mother gave me a fan that had been her grandmother's. I put it in a shadow box frame and it's kept it pretty and safe for many years

  • Elainr Elainr on Nov 29, 2016
    Frame them. They are great.

  • Marie Stone Marie Stone on Jun 01, 2017
    I have cheap comic convention fan my friend gave me and the hinge on the center came out when my other friend and his boyfriend were playing with it I'd rather not throw it away since it was a pregraduation gift so I'd like to reuse it somehow but I only seem able to find ideas for electric fans not cheap black hand fans lol

  • Margaret day Margaret day on Jun 03, 2017
    i would fan them out like windmill and put farmhouse sign out with few cow picture