Dear Jenny: What to do with ceiling fans?

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Spring arrived with a vengeance and suddenly I want to buy more fans and crank up the AC! Apparently we've all got the same problem, because I got about ten Dear Jenny submissions about ceiling fans! Here's one of them:

We live in Texas, which I think has fantastic weather, but for certain, July and August are hot, hot, hot. It is basically a requirement that the rooms upstairs have ceiling fans to try and keep energy costs down in the hot months. All of the bedrooms are upstairs in my house, and though I would love to put an amazing light fixture in every room, it is just not practical. I look through magazines and style books, and there are no ceiling fans in sight! How can a ceiling fan be stylish and work in a space?

It's true. Ceiling fans are not the prettiest of room accessories. I was raised in Arizona though, so I know first hand how necessary they are in many homes.

I think the best rule of thumb for ceiling fan purchases is to keep it really really simple. No matter how much you spend, I don't really think ceiling fans can look cool or pretty. So go for less conspicuous, like Darryl Carter and Steven Gambrel did here:

Also, I know a lot of times this isn't an option, but if there is any way you can use a fan with no light kit, I much prefer that look. My very favorite is this fan. It's really (shockingly) inexpensive, has great reviews and looks very streamlined.

One trick I've seen used is to paint your fan the color of your ceiling (motor, blades and all). That would be easy with something simple like this fan with a light.

If you have to keep the light kit on the fan, my favorite solution is to add a drum shade to cover up those often-ugly ceiling fan lights.

Better Homes and Gardens

Dwellers without Decorators

What about you readers, any favorite good-looking ceiling fans? Or how have you upgraded your old fixtures to be less offensive?

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