Handmade Paper Fan

Make some lucky mother feel like a real southern belle with this beautiful fan on Mother's Day or any time.

Approximate Time: 2 hours approximately



  • handmade paper or water color paper
  • water color paints or acrylic paint
  • 18 inches of 2 inch ruffled lace
  • paint stir stick
  • hot glue
  • several yards of 3 different colors of ribbon
  • silk flowers
  • 1 yard of 2 inch matching silk ribbon
  • 12 x 12 inch heavyweight bondable interfacing
  • 2 pieces 12 x 12 inch fabric print to match handmade paper
  • clothespins


  1. Start with the stir stick for the handle. Measure from the bottom and measure up 9 inches. Cut it off and sand it smooth.
  2. With your 2 inch ribbon, go by the photo and start wrapping the stick from the bottom up. When you get to the top cut the ribbon and glue the end down. (You are benefiting from my mistake here as you see I finished mine at the bottom and sewed it to finish. The top of your handle will be between the two sides of your fan so don't worry about the top being perfect).
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  4. Draw the shape of your fan and cut it out with a wide allowance around the pattern line. You can make it a smooth arch or notched however you want. Layer your fabrics starting with your lining fabric, interfacing and the wrong side of your back fabric and pin your fan pattern to the front of your lining fabric all the way through the 4 layers. Make sure to pin every couple of inches all the way around your fan putting your pins perpendicular to the edge of your fabric. Cut on the pattern line cutting your fabrics out as you go.
  5. Remove your pins as you go from all, but across the bottom edge. Slip your lace under the free edge of the lining fabric, pin in place. Glue the lace to the lining 1/2 inch from the edge of the lining fabric. This way it won't show after you apply your rose petals. Remove the pins.
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  7. Put a double line of hot glue on both sides of the top third of your handle and quickly slip it in between the interfacing and front lining fabric. Press both sides with your hands on the fan to secure the handle. Now you are ready to iron the interfacing to secure both sides together. Do not iron over the handle or the glue might seep through your fabric.
  8. Now you are ready to make your paper rose. Tear your handmade paper in arch shaped, 1.5 to 2.5 inches wide and 4 to 6 inch long strips. Vary your lengths and ruffle the edges. Fold or roll the edges of the petals around a pencil. If you are using waterpaint paper, slightly wrinkle the paper, then smooth it back out for a better look (at least try it to see if you like it, it will look more like and made paper).
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  10. I have drawn a template for you that will work. For the circle in the center you should draw a 5 inch circle and cut to the center as I described then wrap like this patten shows. Refer to photo.
  11. Starting at one side and at the bottom put hot glue next to the bottom edge, glue one strip down, overlap the end of the next strip around the top back and continue around to the other side until you reach the bottom. Start again on the same side you stated your first strip by dropping down and barely covering the bottom of that first strip. Make sure to keep your curve as you work around to the bottom again. Keep repeating this until you fill the entire side. For the very last petal make a 5 inch circle with a slit to the center. Bring one slit edge over the other until you make a cone shape that is tight at the bottom. Glue the bottom so it holds its shape. Place your bud and glue in place.
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  13. Take your water colors or acrylics and make a color wash of water and paint. You will have to experiment to get the color you want. Start out with a drop of paint on a paper plate and dip your brush in water to let water drip beside the paint drop. Then lightly brush over the paint drop and into the water. Mix it around it should have color, but be very light. Try it on a scrap of the same paper your rose is made out of. If you are making a pink rose any red will work, same with blue. With a brush touch the edges of the paper petals and watch the color run down the paper. If you want a darker edge use less water. On your bud, water wash the inside to darken it.
  14. Add a bow and decorate as you wish to present your southern belle her fancy fan.


By Ann Winberg from Loup City

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January 28, 20110 found this helpful

That's so pretty, Ann! Great job! :-)

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January 28, 20110 found this helpful

Ditto! Very nice photos, too. Makes me think of spring.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

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