Born to be Wild: How to Create a Wallpapered Ceiling Fan

Many animal prints and patterns have emerged as popular decorating choices, and zebra print has been no exception. This pattern has quickly evolved into the front runner for fashion and decor. Everywhere I turn, I can always find something zebra print! From children’s clothes and bedroom decor, to design magazines and fashion runways, this bold print is certainly leaving its mark on everyone.

After the trend emerged, I was hesitant to make my first zebra print purchase, but I must say it has now become an addiction! First it was the zebra rain boots, then a matching umbrella, and then I took our zebra print wallpaper to the next level. Wallpaper is great because it’s not only for your walls—it can also be used for lampshades, bookshelves, or other creative locations. zebrawp

Living in a home from the 1920s certainly has its perks, but unfortunately stylish ceiling fans are not one of them. Living with one dated ceiling fan after another, all in various mismatched colors, I finally had enough! I grabbed some wallpaper and supplies and transformed one into a zebra print ceiling fan. This was an easy project and one that you could accomplish for your own home with any wallpaper pattern of your choice.

Here are the tools you will need to create your own wallpaper patterned ceiling fan:

  • Screwdriver
  • Mod Podge
  • Sponge brush
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Wallpaper of your choice
  • Credit card or smoothing tool

Step 1: Prepare your ceiling fan.

Remove the ceiling fan blades and clean them using a damp cloth. This step is important because any dirt or residue that is left on the blade can cause the wallpaper to bubble or wrinkle.

A quick tip: if you aren't planning on replacing your ceiling fan in the future, wallpaper only one side of the blade, preferably the unfinished side (if there is one). This way if you redecorate and no longer like the wallpaper, you can just flip your fan blades back over.

Step 2: Trace and cut out your wallpaper.

Creating a zebra print ceiling fan

Unroll the wallpaper, print side down, and lay the ceiling fan blades on top. Using a pencil, trace a rough outline of each individual blade. Then cut out the pieces from the wallpaper. If your outlines are larger than the blades, don't stress: we will trim the excess off later.

Step 3: Apply wallpaper to the ceiling fan blades.

Creating a zebra print ceiling fan

Once all the pieces are cut out, we can begin to glue them to the blades. Cover the surface with a even coat of Mod Podge using your sponge brush. Then, beginning at the wider end of your blade, line up a piece of wallpaper and position it on the blade. Once applied, evenly smooth the paper with the credit card. During this step, it is best to work from the center to the edges of the paper, as this will remove any excess bubbles that may occur.

Repeat this process for each blade. When finished allow the glue to dry for approximately 5-10 minutes. This is what the blades will look like after application:

Creating a zebra print ceiling fan

Step 4: Seal the wallpaper.

Creating a zebra print ceiling fan

Using the sponge brush and Mod Podge, apply a topcoat to the wallpaper. Evenly apply a thin coat to the print side of the wallpaper on each fan blade. This allows you to seal the wallpaper and means that the surface can be cleaned easily with a damp cloth. Be sure that the topcoat has dried before proceeding to the next step.

Step 5: Sand the edges of your fan blades.

Using a piece of fine grit sandpaper, gently sand the edges of your fan blades to remove any excess wallpaper. Don’t worry if you can see the edges of the ceiling fan around the wallpaper: unless you live with a ceiling fan inspector, they won't be noticeable.

Step 6: Re-assemble your ceiling fan and hang it back up!

Wallpapered ceiling fan

Last step—we are almost there! Using the screws from your fan, poke holes through the wallpaper and reattach the blades to the fan with your screwdriver. After making sure your fan blades are attached securely, re-attach your fan to the ceiling.

That's it! Stand back and admire all your hard work. You have now turned a boring ceiling fan into a work of art.

I hope this project has made you realize that wallpaper—animal patterns or not—can always have a place in your home! I am already brainstorming my next product with zebra print. Do you have a favorite DIY project? Would you redecorate your ceiling fan this way? Let us know what you think!

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