Ceiling Fan Painting – Make it Fun!

by Diane Henkler on 05/05/2010

Striped Ceiling Fan

This fan is in my oldest daughter, Kelly’s room.  Her room is nothing but a museum right now, a testament to who she was and aspired to be.  She is 22, graduated from college and not living at home anymore.  I went into the room the other day and happened to look up.  I smiled as I remember painting the fan with stripes when we first moved in.    This was a project that was included in my book, Instant Decorating.

Ceiling fan painting is one easy way to add color to where it is most often neglected – on the ceiling.  Ceiling fans are wonderful to help the air circulate, but can be eyesores when they don’t fit into the decorating scheme.  When we moved into a previous home and my daughters were little, there was a dark-brown ceiling fan with antique brass fittings in each room.   We couldn’t afford to replace them at the time, so to make them look less obvious, I painted each white to blend in with the ceiling.  When I was decorating their room with a color theme, I continued the palette by painting each blade in a different color of decorative stripes.  When we moved into our current house, my oldest, Kelly wanted her new out of the box white fan, painted with the stripes again.  I happily obliged.

Fun Kids Room Ceiling Fan

Kelly liked lots of color in her room as you can see from the neon green walls with the the colorful border of equestrian event ribbons she won.

Kids Room DIY Decorating Ideas


Ceiling fan with white blades
Roll of 1-inch-wide masking tape
5 colors of 2-ounce bottles acrylic paints , one color for each blade
1-inch foam paint brush
Water-based sealer

1. Remove fan blades from fan and clean thoroughly.

2.  Starting from metal ornamental edge, use a pencil to make marks at 1-inch intervals along both edges of the blade.  Repeat on all blades.

3.  Place first piece of tape between first and second marks and around sides of blade.  Then place tape at every other mark.  The tip should have masking tape over it.  Repeat on all blades.

4.  Paint fan blade with two to three thin coats of acrylic paint in unmasked areas, remembering to paint sides of the blades.  Let dry between coats.  Repeat with a different color on each blade. Let dry.

5.  Remove tape.  Brush one to two coats of water-based sealer on entire surface and side edges of blades.  Let dry.  Put blades back on fan.

I am linking this post to:

Funky Junk Interiors
Finding Fabulous
Poppies At Play
Fingerprints On The Fridge
The Shabby Chic Cottage
HoH – House of Hepworth’s

{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Maridith @ Strictly Homemade May 6, 2010 at 8:31 am

I have been looking for months for a new ceiling fan for my daughters room. In all this time I have not thought one time to paint the thing!! What a great idea. Love the colors you picked. Thank you so much for sharing!

Have a great day!


2 Diane May 6, 2010 at 4:42 pm

Hi Maridith –
It makes it so worth it – to blog and post my ideas when I can inspire readers. Your comment made my day. Painting the ceiling fan with stripes is just one way, you could use stencils, create polda dots – it’s endless. With paint, you can always change your color choices on a whim without it costing a lot. Thanks for the comment.

My best- Diane


3 Rory May 6, 2010 at 7:39 pm

Wow! How fun is this?! I am a typical guy who likes ceiling fans…my other half does not! Maybe this will help me convince her. I would love for you to share this project on Modern Craftswoman Mondays.
I just found your great blog via Life As Lori.


4 Rachel May 7, 2010 at 1:30 pm

That is so fun! I bet that is really cool when it’s turned on. How perfect for a kids room. Thanks so much, I’ll be linking.


5 Miel Abeille May 8, 2010 at 2:41 pm

I’m a new follower! Thank you for visiting me, earlier. :) Your site is great — I’m sure I’ll find a lot of inspiration here.


6 Diane Costanza May 8, 2010 at 3:54 pm

How wonderfully creative! Great job!


7 LaKeta May 11, 2010 at 6:15 pm

I found your blog through “Fingerprints on the Fridge”. I love, love, love this fan!This is an absolutely adorable idea!!! My daughter and I are re-doing her room this summer…so going to try this!!! Thanks for sharing!


8 Lori May 12, 2010 at 12:22 pm

I love this fan!

Thanks for joining Get Your Craft on Thursday!


9 Stephanie February 15, 2011 at 12:21 am

This is such a fun idea! I have been saving it to feature for a long time now and plan to share it with my readers on CrazyDomestic.com tomorrow (Tuesday). Thanks for the inspiration!


10 Olga @ PDL May 11, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Hi there, thanks for sharing this idea! We loved it so much we’ve put a link to it on our blog http://www.polkadotlighthouseuk.blogspot.com along with a few other MT ideas! Thanks again!


11 Nancy August 19, 2011 at 11:13 pm

Love this idea! Came across it when I was looking at your how to make fake topiaries, (this is my problem, I start reading and get sidetracked!) Was thinking you could use some of the colorful japanese tapes that are out there now and you could get color and design as well.


12 Diane August 23, 2011 at 11:35 pm

Hi Nancy-

The Japanese tapes would look awesome. Wish they were around back when I painted the stripes on the fan. I know how you feel about getting sidetracked when online. Sometimes I get so far away from what I was doing, I just have to say stop and focus on the task at hand, but it is hard.


13 Renee February 17, 2012 at 12:52 pm

Loving this idea & just now trying to figure where this idea would fit into what room with what color!!!! Such a great creative decorating idea, so simple but so nice to see.
Thanking you for sharing.


14 nik February 23, 2012 at 4:52 pm

ohgoodgolly I don’t have a ceiling fan now but this makes me want to go out and get one! It’s so very Dr. Seuss-y. :)
Arrived via Today’s Creative Blog…cheers!


15 Lisa June 7, 2012 at 1:51 am

Love this idea! I was thinking about using colorful electrical tape to make the stripes. Do you think this would work? Just wanted something temporary so when the girls get older and they don’t want color, I can take them off possibly. What are your thoughts?


16 Diane June 7, 2012 at 10:35 am

Hi Lisa – the electrical tape would work just fine. It would be slightly raised, but as long as you make sure all the edges are adhered it will be fine. I would have a ruler and a sharp craft knife handy so you could make nice mitered joints in the tape where the zig-zags of the chevron pattern come to a point. This would give the tape application a very professional look.


17 Diane June 9, 2012 at 12:15 pm

Hi again Lisa – Ha – Silly me! So sorry I wrote the reply to you thinking it was about a stool I just posted and your comment/question came to me in that batch. You must be thinking – what is she talking about when you got the reply to your question. I think the tape would work just fine – the only problem that may occur would be an unbalancing of the blades, but if you place it on the same on each blade it may not be a problem at all. You could probably use colorful Wasabi tape, also – that is much thinner and lighter.

Again sorry for any confusion my first reply caused you :)


18 Lisa June 15, 2012 at 6:52 pm

Thanks for the feedback! I appreciate it! We are also going to use your banquette seating for our own kitchen. I just hope it turns out as nice as your’s did! Great site and loads of information and ideas I will use in future projects! Thanks! Lisa


19 Inspire Me Heather June 25, 2012 at 9:19 am

Your fan looks really great – love it! I have this linked to my ceiling fans roundup post too today, well done!


20 Sherry July 19, 2012 at 3:35 am

Love this idea!
Do you have any thoughts on using mod-podge with tissue paper on the blades instead of painting? Seems like fun but I would hate to ruin a perfectly good fan if it won’t work.


21 Diane July 19, 2012 at 11:00 pm

Hi Sherry –
I think with the airflow from the fans moving all the time the Mod Podge and paper woudld dry out and it would start to come off. If you don’t want to paint the blades – try colorful Washi tapes that come in solid colors and patterns.


22 RuthiBrasil October 14, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Interessantíssima a idéia!! gostei!!!


23 Calista August 1, 2013 at 11:04 pm

Okay, this is so not the topic, but what equestrian events did she compete in? A girl like me could only dream like winning that many ribbons with my horse!


24 Diane Henkler August 4, 2013 at 10:38 pm

Hi Calista – :) My daughter competed in many events – mostly jumping when she was in high school and college and the flat equitation classes when she was little. She lived and breathed everything horses as you can tell from her room. She would be big time envious of you since she has never owned a horse and has always wanted one. She rode the horses at the farm where she took lessons, the horses the college she went to owned, and now one of her friends horses. She is in medical school now and once she is finished, I am sure she will finally be buying one of her own.


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