History of the Paper Fans
Hand fans have been around for centuries. The first ones made from wood and feathers were invented in Chinaaround 2nd BC, but fans from paper were invented in Japan approximately between the 5th and 7th BC.
There are two kinds of fans. First are the simple fans which cannot be folded and are used by people commonly to fan themselves during hot weather. They are also known as paddle or flat fans.
On the other hand, the folding hand fans had been used in ancient times for social and court activities and even as soldiers’ weapons during battles. High-quality fans were even presented to royalties and high officials as gifts. Some of these traditions have survived to the modern day, such as the fan dances from Japan and Korea.
Now, paper fans are one of the newest eye candies of party planners who want to try something new and interesting for their events. Folding hand fans, as well as paddle or simple fans are fast becoming the new trend and a perfect idea for events held outdoors or during spring or summer.
If your idea of a perfect wedding is one by the beach, paper fans can suit your theme well. It is also a perfect wedding favor for weddings held during spring or summer when the weather is always hot. The guests will surely appreciate the purpose of the fans cooling them on a hot day.
Another great idea is for the fans to be printed with the wedding details and send them out as invitations. They can also be used as place card holder. White wedding fans are ideal, but you choose from a wide range of colors if you decide to employ other hues.
Giving out folding hand fans as party invitations or souvenirs is not limited to weddings. They can also be used during summer parties by the pool or the beach. Since they can come in any colors, they are easily customizable to fit any event.
Have your paper fans painted or printed with hibiscus patterns and they are ready to fit with the leis for you luau party. Folding hand fans with cherry blossoms pictures or Chinese calligraphy are perfect for Oriental-inspired parties. It can as well be used in birthday parties, get-togethers and other social events. The trick is to place them strategically all over the venue to accentuate the place.
Paper fans are available in a lot of stores (even online!) and come in all colors and sizes. You can look for ones which can be customized for a more intimate effect – this is perfect for intimate occasions such as weddings and other close-family events. There are those which also provide personalized packets for the hand fans so they can be ready to be sent out once you receive them.
But if you really want to add a personal touch by making them yourself, these fans are easy to make as well. There are a number of websites offering step-by-step fan-making instructions. Some of the directions are simplified enough so that even children can understand them, and it is up to you to make necessary changes so that the finished product would look as beautiful as you meant it to be.
Most of the instructions call for craft sticks, paper, string, beads, scissors, crafting glue, and glue sticks. The paper to be used depends on whether you want to use pre-printed paper (such as wrapping paper) or print new designs on blank ones (construction paper is highly recommended because it is sturdy). They are easy to create, but can take time if you want to make them in volumes.