How to Make a Spanish Hand Fan

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A Spanish hand fan conjures up images of a Spanish senorita, her face half hidden behind a fan of black lace. You can use this fan for a costume party or on a hot summer day in a stuffy office. Use lightweight, delicate lace for your fan, and be sure it has a rounded fluted edge along one side. For a romantic touch, add a tiny red rose with a velvet leaf. The rose needs to fit on one of the fan's folds. The base of your fan will be black posterboard thin enough that it can be folded since construction paper will tear after repeated use.

Things You'll Need

  • Thin, bendable black posterboard
  • Black lace 26 inches long by 9 inches wide (one 26-inch edge should be fluted, the other straight)
  • Tiny red silk rose with green stem and velvet leaf
  • Narrow red or black ribbon
  • Tape
  • Glue
  • Hot glue gun
  • Cut a piece of posterboard 22 inches long by 8.5 inches wide. If you use two smaller pieces of posterboard, tape them together so no light shows through. Make them 22-by-8.5 inches.

  • Fold your fan with one-inch folds one at a time. After the first fold, turn your fan over and turn the paper in the other direction. For the third fold, turn the paper over again. Continue this way until the entire length of the paper is folded.

  • Lay the black lace on top of the fan to position it, letting the fluted edge overhang the open top. Set it aside and run a thin line of glue along the folds of the paper, not the creases. Use regular glue in case you need to reposition the lace. You want just enough to hold it in place. Lay the lace loosely over the folds and press down. It won't fit precisely, but the extra inches will give you room to accommodate the paper's stiff folds. Once it's glued in place, trim any excess lace from the ends of the fan.

  • Tape the bottom of the fan that you hold between your fingers using a long piece of tape. Make sure the end is secure so it doesn't pop open. When you're done the fan should open fully into a semi-circle, with a long flat bottom and rounded top.

  • Hot glue a tiny red silk rose and green velvet leaf on one of the inside folds at the top or open end. Hot glue a loosely made bow of narrow ribbon along the side of the bottom, letting the long streamers dangle.

Tips & Warnings

  • You don't have to be fussy about laying the lace in place perfectly. You only need it to hold. Once the fan is folded and the bottom taped, any imperfections will be hidden. When you hold your fan, the tape at the bottom won't be noticeable. For dramatic contrast you can substitute white posterboard or vellum beneath the black lace. If you use white, you'll also need a second piece of 26-by-9 inch black lace for the back side.

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