Pink 18th C Style Fan

I have continued to experiment with making 18th C style fans. I wanted to try a method that allowed me to reuse the stencil, as opposed to my freezer paper tutorial I posted about a couple months back. Then I saw the drool-worthy, fabulous work of The Treasures of Dawn, particularly her decoupaged portrait fans. I thought I could figure out how to make something similar, but with my fabric stenciling method. (BTW, check out The Treasures of Dawn blog for some of her other great fan-making projects. Beautiful!)

Here is the result

I started with another cheap plastic and lace wedding favor fan. The lace tears off really easily.

Then I cut out my fan-shaped stencil, using a plastic sheet that is sold especially for stencil-making (see the section in the craft store with pre-cut stencils for painting on walls)

I stuck the stencil to my fabric temporarily using spray adhesive (you only use a light coat on the plastic so that it can be peeled off later)

Then I painted my stencil using opaque screen printing ink and a foam brush

After peeling off the plastic stencil, letting the paint dry, and heat setting it, I penciled in lines where I wanted to cut out the final fan leaf

Then I had to choose a portrait to put in the middle of my center oval. These were different candidates that I tried out in Adobe Illustrator. The green ovals are the size of the border that will remain once I’ve placed my portrait on the fan. Big shout out to Dames a la Mode, which was where I got the fashion plates in the top right and bottom left corners. I ended up using the fashion plate in the top right. Thanks for posting those plates, Taylor!

I printed my chosen portrait on an iron-on transfer (opaque, for dark fabrics) and attached it to the fan

Then I glued sequins around the portrait for some bling, using gem tack glue

The fan leaf all cut out, ready to be glued to the fan sticks



2 thoughts on “Pink 18th C Style Fan

  1. This is a really wonderful idea! I can just imagine the lovely lady in the fashion plate carrying a fan just like this one. A fashion plate of a fan with a fan with a fashion plate of a fan with a fashion plate of a fan… 🙂

    What kind of glue did you use to attach the fabric to the spokes? I have the hardest time finding a glue that doesn’t bleed through the fabric! I’d like to try making a fan with some pictorial printed fabric or a toile that would imitate the fantastically painted ones from the 18th century.

    • Thanks for commenting!

      Regarding the glue, I used Gem Tack brushed on in a very thin coat. Gem Tack is made for adhering to fabric, so you need very little to get it to work.

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