Instructables
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If you're old enough to remember what churches and funerals used to be like before air conditioning, you probably remember those old-fashioned paper fans that used to be embellished with religious or patriotic images. You can still find suppliers for them if you're willing to pay.

But I was needing a much cheaper solution for the July 4 (hot! hot! hot!) Fun Fourth festival booth of Funeral Consumers Alliance of the Piedmont, a nonprofit organization in Greensboro, N.C. So I crafted a handmade paper fan. It's cheap and easy -- and a snap to create a hundred or two. Think of the possibilities for paper fans to be used: weddings, picnics, outdoor festivals....

The image below of a paper fan reminiscent of the 1950s is by Calsidyrose. It has a Creative Commons license on it that permits this use. Thank you, Calsidyrose!
 
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Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

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Here's my list for 200 paper fans:

200 7" x 9" white paper mailers (the thick cardboard type)
40 sheets of 10-up white 2"x4" printer labels
100 sheets of 2-up 5.5" by 8.5" white printer labels
200 14" paint stir sticks (I found some online for 17 cents each)
2 rolls of 1 in wide double-sided foam mounting tape (about 2.75 yards total)
scissors, ruler and a pen or pencil

Step 2: Think Inside the Box

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Now here is something your paper fan can do that the old fashioned kind can't -- carry a message inside!

Stuff your paper mailer with something you want to give away with it. We used a membership application for Funeral Consumers Alliance of the Piedmont! Then close and seal your mailer as you normally would.
Rose Bushue3 years ago
Hello! my name is Rose & I'm always looking for ways to help my church. Last year i made all the ladies fans for Mothers Day But some of those fans didn't last long. So I thought I'd try & make some spares for our visiters. I really enjoy doing things like this for my church. Thank you. Sincerely Rose Bushue..
hominid4 years ago
Advertising on a fan? Do you hand them out at funerals? What gives?
hollystevens (author)  hominid4 years ago
Funeral homes used to hand them out at funerals as a form of advertising in the days before air conditioning was common. Funeral Consumers Alliance of the Piedmont is a not-for-profit consumer group, not a funeral home, and it would be tacky for us to barge in on someone's funeral and start handing out fans! (Funny thought, though.) But yes, we plan on handing out these fans at an upcoming hot outdoor festival as a way to increase the public's awareness that we're here. A family can save literally thousands of dollars just by being a more knowledgeable consumer, and that's what we're all about. You can look to see if you have a nearby FCA affiliate here.
Many thanks for the detailed clarification. Its a good idea now that I understand better.
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