How to modify a vintage fan to make an early 19th century fan reproduction: a painted silk fan mini tutorial. Yesterday I finished my painted silk fan, and wanted to share a bit about how I made it!
First, here is what my finished fan looks like:
|Early 19th Century Painted Silk Wood fan by TheLadyDetalle|
I also checked out InTheLongRun's fan blog post for ideas on what type of glue to use (GemTac). Also if there were any special tips or techniques to be aware of. I used wood instead of plastic, so I was experimenting on if the glue would work the same, but great inspiration there.
One day I'd like to paint a fancy paper fan, use real antique fan slats in a creation, and hand painting tiny little things, although first up is my 'test' run using a vintage fan. that I finished last night!
Here is what my vintage fan looked like: I acquired this on Ebay for about $12.
|Vintage fan - (Madrid, Spain - my guess, 1950's?|
|Vintage fan - back|
Gently continue this process until you have removed the old fabric from the fan back, front and slats in between (starting on one end and working your way to the other). Save the fabric that you removed - you will need this as a template for the fabric you are going to replace it with.
You may want to steam it a little bit, to loosen the glue, if it doesn't come off on its own, but you want to keep the fan back/front and the fan slats very well intact (no breaks), since that will become your new fan base. I was fortunate enough that my fan was old enough that the fan glue was not really holding well anymore, so some gentle tugging and the lace started to come right off.
|Vintage fan - wooden slats with old lace removed|
|Vintage fan old lace after removal|
First, I ironed the old lace flat, so that I could use for the 'pattern' for my new silk taffeta fan.
|Cream silk taffeta fan from 'pattern' - Gem Tac glue at edges to keep from fraying|
Following the advice of InTheLongRun's fan tutorial, I used Gem Tac glue along the edges of my silk taffeta (she has done it with cotton/cotton blends only) taking a chance that it would work with silk. It did, it actually worked nicely, so once that was dry-ish (and kind of tacky), I used the original lace back to trace out where the fan slats should be re-attached onto a new pattern. Then I made tiny marks along the edge of my silk taffeta fabric for the fan back, that show me where I should glue the fan slats.
|Gluing the silk taffeta to the wood slats|
I glued and glued and glued and wiped, and glued and wiped until it was all done - it looked quite nice, although the glue definitely darkens the silk taffeta and makes it slightly tacky/sticky.
|Finished silk fan - ready to paint|
|Painting in progress - silk fan|
|Painting done - Silk fan by TheLadyDetalle|
I painted this fan to compliment my late 1790's (1799) gown for the upcoming ball, and I like how it turned out for first try! Pictured below in front of the dress I intend to wear this with next weekend!
|Finished silk wood fan back by TheLadyDetalle|