Ceiling Fan Update
Over the weekend, we updated our ceiling fan. You may have noticed it in old pictures of our room:
Here’s a more clear picture:
Our top priority was to take the fan off the ceiling to relocate it because it was not in the center of the room. The fan was centered in the room before the bathroom was added, but since the bathroom shortened the room, it has always looked a little off balance – slightly closer to the bathroom than it should be. Since we were in the process of putting up new drywall on the ceiling anyway (as we discussed here and here), we thought now was a good time to move the ceiling fan to the proper location.
While we had the fan off the ceiling, we decided it was a good time for an color update too. The brass and wood colors are too warm for our modern color scheme (grey/silver/white). Although we contemplated just replacing it, we ended up trying a paint-upgrade. We figured that there was no harm in trying it, since we already had it off the ceiling and, if the paint was a disaster, we could just replace it.
Here’s a step-by-step of what we did:
- Disassemble the light fixture. We are adding recessed lights (for more details on that project, click here) to the bedroom so the light fixture on the fan wasn’t necessary any more. We also didn’t care for the light fixture hanging down from the fan since the bedroom already felt a little
crampedcozy so we wanted to keep everything as high up as possible. The only snag is that we’re missing part of the original, light-fixture-free assembly, so we are improvising by using part of the light fixture instead. As a result, there is a small hole in the middle of the fan. Oops! We’re hoping Home Depot carries a replacement piece, but until we hunt it down, the hole isn’t very obvious nor is it problematic for function.
- Unscrew the fan blades.
We wanted to paint the fan blades a different color than the metal base and accent pieces. We went through a number of solid color schemes (all white, all silver, all Ben Moore’s White Chocolate). We decided straight white would look bad against the White Chocolate ceiling, in light of lessons learned from hanging curtains. Even though spray painting the whole unit silver to match the curtain rods was the easiest option, we decided that all silver was, well, too much silver for the bedroom. And hand-painting the whole unit White Chocolate was too time consuming and there was a high risk of drips and/or paint not sticking to the metal finish. So, we settled on spray painting the metal pieces silver and hand-painting the wooden blades in White Chocolate. Here’s our inspiration for the color scheme:
This fan is a Casa Vieja fan that sells for about $200 on Amazon. Of course, it’s much more modern than what we will accomplish with our silver-and-white fan upgrade, but the inspiration is there.
- Lay out all the metal pieces on some newspaper outside. This includes all the screws, the base unit,and the decorative metals that hold on the fan blades.
- Spray paint! We used the same alumnium spray paint from our curtain rod upgrade. The screws and the decorative metals were easy as pie (just kept the spray bottle moving and did lots of thin coats). The base unit was a little trickier because it had areas that were difficult to reach. We resolved that by putting a few coats on and then rotating the unit (on the back, then on the side, etc.). We also had to move the pull-string around so we didn’t end up with one weird spot that didn’t get painted because the chain was in the way. That’s another problem with our current fan- our chain is broken, so we’ll be replacing that at some point. In the meantime, we just painted it – duct tape and all.
- Paint the fan blades. We had a few question marks here. Our first question was whether we needed to sand the fan blades before we painted them. We went ahead and painted without sanding first, then evaluated whether the paint was sticking. It seemed to stick just fine, so we never sanded the blades. If it peels in a few months, then we’ll just take it down, sand, and repaint. We also learned quickly that the blades needed to be painted with a roller (not a brush) because the brush was leaving too many streaks, a problem which was probably made worse by the decision not to sand the blades.
With the paint brush:
With a roller:
The second question was whether we wanted to paint the rattan decoration. We thought the rattan might look nice with the White Chocolate (it didn’t because the wood peeked through from behind the rattan) and we weren’t sure how weird it would look painted.
It looked not good. We decided that we would simply flip the blades upside down (so the rattan was facing the ceiling) and not deal with the issue at all. Plus, not painting the rattan meant that if someday in the future we wanted to use it again, we hadn’t irreversibly painted the rattan. We used 3 coats of White Chocolate to fully cover the brown wood.
- Reassemble! As we mentioned, we’re still working on the ceiling so the fan hasn’t been re-installed yet (we promise to update you when it’s done), but here’s a picture of the reassembled fan:
All-in-all we’re really happy how it turned out. We can’t wait to see how it looks in our updated bedroom. We’ll be sure to add more pictures when it’s reattached to the ceiling.