Auction Find: Vintage Fan Refurbish


When I was home on vacation at the end of March, I was in project mode and started to do some things around the house that I had wanted to do for some time.   After stopping at Altard State and purchasing a cute, vintage-feel dog photo frame that I wanted to use in my "vintage industrial" style office, I suddenly remembered I had purchased a large vintage fan off of a local online auction for $25 about a year and a half ago.  When I initially picked up the fan, it was much larger than I originally thought and needed much more work than I thought.  On top of that, it did not work.  I did not buy it for that reason, as my original idea was to use it primarily for decor, but still.  I didn't know if it was what I wanted, so off it went in my messy garage full of auction and estate sale finds.

Original auction posting of the fan

Original auction posting of the fan

I after buying this frame (I hard to believe this frame started it all), I just had this inspiration to go find the fan and see if it could possibly work now that I was looking at the room a little differently.  My plan was to put the frame on top of my vintage, 1920s Singer Sewing table.  The table is original with the sewing machine still intact.  I bought this table (also from a local online auction) because I had seen it upcycled a million times on Flea Market Flip (one of my favorite shows), but because it was intact, there was no way I was ripping it apart.  The sewing machine is beautiful, and the table actually still works.  I figured because the top was older wood, it almost looked like reclaimed wood, so it had the look I was going for anyways.  I just cleaned up the bottom black metal stand and voila!  Table ready to go.

I knew that the table would look great with the frame and knew it needed something else.  I had the vision of taking that fan, cleaning it up, and making it a black metal to match the table.  It would definitely have that vintage, industrial vibe that I have going on in my office.  Cleaning up and spray painting the fan was very easy.  I just took a brush with some Dawn dish soap and water and cleaned it up with a scrub brush.  Unfortunately, there was a lot of rust, but the clean up did a pretty good job.  

Now, some people may hate me for this, but I broke out the Rustoleum Hammered Spray Paint in Black and went over the fan with it.  I know there are many other steps to take to refurbish some of these fans, but I wanted a quick and easy project for this fan.  Otherwise, I was either going to sell it or pitch it, and I doubt I would have gotten more money than what I purchased it for.  Plus, I had this idea for a vintage fan in my office for some time, so even if I sold this one and purchased another one, I was likely going to be in the same boat unless I dropped a bunch of cash on an already refurbished one, which I wasn't going to do.  

I always like the Hammered spray paint, as it's great on old and rusty metal.  It covers it up, and the "hammered" effect takes away the look of any left over rust. I'm very happy with the result, and I absolutely love it in my office.  It brings some of the black, metal, and industrial elements together in the room.  It's perfect for what I wanted and is the most cost effective solution I could find!

The paint on the fan dried quickly, so in about a day, the fan was complete.  I took it upstairs an knew it was perfect for the office.  I printed out one of my favorites photos of Cooper and Ginger in a Sepia toned photo, put it in the frame, and the little table was finished.  

At this time, the electric cord is not working, but I'm unsure if I care to fix it.  Both my dad and Terry offered to fix it, but they are both so busy, that means they will fix it by Christmas!  Since I do worry about the safety of my pets with the fan due to the open blades, I figured it is not a big deal if it does not work, as I'm only really liking it for the aesthetic aspect anyways. 


I am very happy with the result and am glad I was able to incorporate this great, vintage fan into my home.  What are your thoughts?