Don’t Take Away Our Ceiling Fans – We Need Them!

Dear Laurel,

I love you. I love your blog but there’s something I need to get off my chest. We are building our dream home. We live in Texas. It is hot as hell here for nine months out of the year.

You my dear (said with love), are from New York. Yes, I know you guys can have some steamy days, but you don’t know steam until you’ve arrived in south Texas!

Point is; we need our ceiling fans! And some of them must have lights! But you said that you’re not big on ceiling fans and absolutely no lights!

Please, please reconsider. I hang on your every word!

Fanny Liteswich




Hey Fanny, you do???


Well, I certainly wouldn’t expect anyone to. Or, even remember everything I’ve ever said.


However, I guess you missed when I’ve said that it is NOT true that I dislike ceiling fans!


And, I’ve been to Texas. I was there last October, in Austin, and slept underneath my dear friend Deborah Main’s glorious fan at her fabulous Airbnb.


You can check out Deb Main’s Airbnb listing here.


However, while I DO like ceiling fans, I don’t like ALL of them. This is the type of fan that I can’t stand.  As for ceiling fans with lights, if you click on the link, you’ll the type of lights to avoid. Sometimes, a sleek light on a fan is helpful. But, in general, I’m not big on overhead lights unless it’s a hall. They are fine as ambient light. You can read about flushmount and semi-flushmount lights here.


Another point while not that big a deal, is that I’m no stranger to hot, steamy weather. My formative years were spent in a place that is insanely hot at least 4 months out of the year. Southern Indiana. Or Evansville, to be precise.


See? Southern Indiana is in the humid subtropical zone. I told you so!



Although, this summer has been one for the records in terms of heat and humidity.


I did read that there have been some deaths due to the hurricane. But, I hope that everyone else is doing okay in the aftermath of the storm we just had on the entire eastern seaboard of the US. We had some intense wind here for an hour or so, this afternoon.

Sorry for a bit of meandering. However, my point is that I totally appreciate the need to keep the air in the ol’ sweat box moving.


What I would prefer not to see, in the way of ceiling fans is this:


Oh, dear!


or this

And God forbid– This wackiness!


Okay, let’s get the boring stuff out-of-the-way. Boring, but necessary.


The things we need to consider when selecting a ceiling fan.


  • Location – Is it dry, damp, or wet?
  • The type of room or location it’s going in
  • The style/colors of the home/room in relation to the style needs of the fan
  • Ceiling height
  • The size of the room or area
  • Lighting options, if necessary for the fan and if not, placement of the other lights if in the ceiling, especially.
  • Airflow. This is a technical issue and to be discussed with your contractor if it’s important
  • Controls – wall or remote
  • Cleaning supplies


These good folks put together a whole check list of rules, etc.

My over-all philosophy, for most situations, is less is more. You really cannot go wrong with simple. That is… unless you want the fan to make a design statement, but please be careful.


Time to jump in for some inspo for our ceiling fans


Furlow Gatewood. You barely notice the fan. A simple, classic white fan. Stay tuned. There are a number of them coming up!


Furlow Gatewood – image by Rodney Collins


Bunny Williams and John Rosselli's home in Punta Cana

This is Bunny Williams and John Rosselli’s home in Punta Cana. Here they chose a simple fan to move the air. Please also check out this post about how to get the Bunny Williams Punta Cana Home on a budget.


Midwest Home Mag

The old-style fans moved with a belt and you can still get those at Fanimation.

(there will be some links to sources, later)


Let’s look at some ceiling fans in situ for inspiration


Dearborn Builders


Kitchen Rao Design Studios

Matthews Fan Company DD-MTL Duplo Dinamico 39" Rotational Fan - Blades and Wall, Copper

From Matthews Fan Company.


Better Homes and Gardens


Charleston Home Mag


Dearborn Builders


Huff-Dewberry Design


Home Design Decor Mag


Some of My Favorite Ceiling Fans


Minka-Aire F565-WH Mesa, 52" Ceiling Fan White - Best Ceiling Fans

Minka-Aire F565-WH, Mesa, 52″ Fan, White


Let’s begin with Furlow Gatewood’s classic white ceiling fan.


This one is a flush mount version which is perfect for an eight-foot ceiling. It’s under 70 bucks, and 75% gave it five stars.

This fan comes in different sizes, finishes, etc.

Here is a link to the 42″ version from Minka.

Hunter Fan Company also makes a similar version.


Casablanca 54000 Ainsworth 54-Inch Ceiling Fan with Five Blades, Cottage White

Casablanca 54000 Ainsworth 54-Inch with Five Blades, Cottage White

I like this chalky, almost Swedish-looking fan.


Hunter Fan 53039 Summer Breeze 52-Inch Ceiling Fan with Five Blades, WhiteHunter Fan 53039 Summer Breeze 52-Inch with Five Blades, White


Suzanne Kasler White Ceiling fan bedroom - ceiling fans

Suzanne Kasler


Emerson Ceiling Fans CF755WW Designer 52-Inch Energy Star Ceiling Fan, Light Kit Adaptable, Appliance White FinishEmerson Ceiling Fan CF755WW Designer 52-Inch Energy Star, Light Kit Adaptable, Appliance White Finish


Furlow Gatewood – photo by Rod Collins

All or most of the above traditional white ceiling fans come in other finishes. And Most also have a light kit to fit with ONE center light. :]


Minka-Aire F470-WH, Hilo White 52" Ceiling Fan with LightMinka-Aire F470-WH, Hilo White 52″ with Light

The above fan from Minka is one lovely example already fitted with a light.


Minka-Aire F524-WHF, Roto White 52" Ceiling Fan with Wall ControlMinka-Aire F524-WHF, Roto White 52″ with Wall Control


Hunter 59263 Contemporary Cassius Fresh White Ceiling Fan, 52"Hunter 59263 Contemporary Cassius Fresh White 52″


Matthews IR5-TB-60, Irene Textured Bronze 60" Ceiling Fan with RemoteMatthews IR5-TB-60, Irene Textured Bronze 60″ with Remote


Minka-Aire F556-ORB, Contractor Plus Oil-Rubbed Bronze Energy Star 52" Ceiling Fan


Minka-Aire F556-ORB, Contractor Plus Oil-Rubbed Bronze Energy Star 52″ Ceiling Fan


Fanimation Spitfire Ceiling Fan Model MA6721DF driftwood finish with light Fanimation Spitfire Model MA6721DF driftwood finish with light


It also comes in a version without a light. I believe that the blades are sold separately. Fanimation is a more expensive brand, but the fixtures are exquisite!


Fanimation FP7910OB Levon Ceiling Fan, Oil Rubbed Bronze Finish, 8 Walnut Finish BladesFanimation FP7910OB Levon Ceiling Fan, Oil Rubbed Bronze Walnut Finish, 8 Blades


Emerald Coast Real Estate Photography


belt-driven-ceiling-fans-Living-Room-Traditional Ceiling Fans

Belt driven fan – Room by Tyson Construction Company


Hunter 18865 60-Inch Limited Edition Ceiling Fan, Midas BlackHunter 18865 60-Inch Limited Edition Ceiling Fan, Midas Black

Above and below are modeled after late 1800s two-blade ceiling fans.


Quorum 28682-86, Turner Oiled Bronze 68" Ceiling Fan with Wall Control

Quorum 28682-86, Turner Oiled Bronze 68″ Ceiling Fan with Wall Control


Westinghouse Lighting 7201600 Aerialist 52-Inch Two-Blade Indoor DC Motor Ceiling Fan, Oil Brushed Bronze Finish

Westinghouse Aerialist 52-inch two-blade-Indoor DC Motor Ceiling Fan, bronze finish


Matthews Fan Company AQ-CR-MTL Ceiling Fan, Chrome Finish with No Shades

Matthews Fan Company AQ-CR-MTL Ceiling Fan, Chrome Finish with No Shades

This retro beauty from Matthews comes in different sizes and finishes.


Matthews DI-BN-MTL, Diane, Oscilating Ceiling Fan, 13" Span, Brushed Nickel

Matthews DI-BN-MTL, Diane, Oscillating Ceiling Fan, 13″ Span, Brushed Nickel


Matthews ME-TB, Melody,13" Wall Fan, Bronze

Matthews ME-TB, Melody,13″ Wall Fan, Bronze


That is a work of art indeed! I realize that this is technically a wall fan.


Minka Aire F833-RD Red Ceiling Fan

Minka Aire F833-RD Red Ceiling Fan

I think that this red number would be fabulous in a playroom or a kid’s bedroom, or even a fun kitchen. I believe that it comes in other colors too, and it also comes in white.


Minka Aire F802-BN/CH One Light Brushed Nickel/chrome Ceiling Fan

Minka Aire F802-BN/CH One Light Brushed Nickel/chrome Ceiling Fan

One more retro dual fan, but a little more trad and with a light :] by Minka.


They are calling this transitional, which many of you know is a word I really don’t like. I see it as being more retro and think it would be cool in a kitchen.


brushed nickel Brette Indoor Outdoor ceiling fan - LED lights - Fandelier

Above is the brushed nickel Brette Indoor/Outdoor ceiling fan with LED lights. I could see this in a kitchen or a city home, perhaps.


What is this, you ask? A FANDELIER


And no, I did not make that one up. This also comes in nickel. I think it would be fab in a kitchen. If the kitchen is on the smaller side, unless it’s a galley, I would do only one. But it could also go in an entry or hall, stair landing– laundry. Lots of places.


Below is a mini widget of some other cool “fandeliers.” Some are indoor/outdoor and some are only indoor. Please click on any image for more information.




Indoor/Outdoor Fans


These are all UL rated to go in damp places like porches, patios, and sunrooms, but please, please double-check. I supposed if it can go outside, it can go inside too. Right? Some state that they are indoor/outdoor.

Harbor Breeze Twin Breeze Ii 74-in Oil-rubbed Bronze Outdoor Downrod Ceiling Fan

Harbor Breeze Twin Breeze Ii 74-in Oil-rubbed Bronze Outdoor Downrod Ceiling Fan


52" Casa Delta-Wing Bronze Outdoor Ceiling Fan

52″ Casa Delta-Wing Bronze Outdoor Ceiling Fan

And this is another version with a light


Hunter Fan Company 53125 Bridgeport 52-Inch ETL Damp Listed Ceiling Fan with Five White Plastic Blades, White

Hunter Fan Company 53125 Bridgeport 52-Inch ETL Damp Listed Ceiling Fan with Five White Plastic Blades, White


Minka-Aire F572-WH, Sundance, 42" Ceiling Fan, White

Minka-Aire F572-WH, Sundance, 42″ Ceiling Fan, White



And,  I saved one of the best brands for ceiling fans, for last. BIG ASS FANS


Haiku Home L Series Smart Ceiling Fan, Wi-Fi, Indoor/Outdoor, LED Light, White

Haiku Home L Series Smart Ceiling Fan, Wi-Fi, Indoor/Outdoor, LED Light, White


Haiku fan - big ass fans 52 inch bedroom - ceiling fans

haiku - 52" fan - big ass fans - Wayfair

Wayfair also sells this model of the Haiku fan for only $600.


27 chic, stylish ceiling fans

Please save the above image to your Pinterest boards!


Well, I hope you guys enjoyed that. And, please let me know what you think of these fans.




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43 Responses

  1. Our vents are located above our ceiling fans. We’ve noticed that the ceiling fan lowers the temperature in our bedroom no matter which way it’s turning. So we are not benefiting at all during the colder months. Any suggestions?

  2. You missed retractable fans. You use the remote to extend the blades. When you don’t need the fan the blades “hide” above the light fixture. I looked at this style but changed my mind. I’m in Texas so who would I be kidding….the fan is always going.
    Love your blog.

  3. I did enjoy that. Especially the belt driven fan in the new builder home that looks fabulous …it it weren’t for the model T hanging on the ceiling. You’re right, even builders make big mistakes!! I wonder if they also put a tether in the yard to tie down a buyer’s hot air balloon.

  4. I found my bedroom fan at Lowes. It is actually understated, but has an intrinsic light. I can set the speed remotely, and (for me) I was happy to find it with wood blades. I don’t recall the brand name, but I’m happy to note it is extremely (not perfectly) quiet, and I barely hear it. And does not wobble. It wasn’t expensive, either. (There’s one more ceiling fan in the house – in the kitchen).

  5. Another comment from firmly in the must-fan belt. Winter is disappearing fast in North Florida. We hit the 90s in March this year. I’m dying.

    We recently replaced a horrifying 1991 special faux verdigris scallop-detail, extra tall 5-blade, 4-light (this designer does NOT have symmetry issues) monstrosity in the living room with a positively enormous 64-inch Hunter Kaplan. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend the model. There’s a problem with their remote receivers that I’m trying to solve. But when it is running at full speed it sounds ever so softly like the ocean and it moves about 3 times as much air as the old, wobbly eyesore. And because the design is simple and semi-flush, it almost disappears in the room, despite taking up half of the ceiling.

    Having experienced the quiet motor, I’m now on a kick to replace all these old, crappy fans.

  6. I pretty much always just said “Southern Indiana” until I moved back to the state. We were on the west side, and it’s a completely different world over there than it was when we left in 98!

  7. I have the Fanimation Levon fan in my family room. It’s super quiet and it runs all summer. At work, we just replaced our fans with Minka-Aire Roto. It’s affordable priced, great looking and quiet.

  8. I have fandilier, big ass fan and others The Hiaku Fan Company is very helpful with the size of fan that is needed for your space. Great post Laurel, difficult choices when placing or replacing ceiling fans. I have inherited some real beauties

  9. Lol, I was thinking that was a dead giveaway, but you usually tell us if it’s a made up letter. I shoulda known!

  10. Oops! The link on the first Fandelier isn’t correct. But I love knowing that it is a thing! I just may need one for my kitchen.

  11. I want to come back in my next life as Furlow Gatewood. I love everything about his house (though I wouldn’t want to dust it all)!!

  12. I love my ceiling fans-all classic Hunters, old-school cast iron and worth every penny. They assist cooling in the summer and moving heat in the winter. Mine have 2 separate places to adjust speed…one is a pull chain on the fan body, and the other is the switch on the wall. You can adjust most fans so that you fell very little breeze at all. No one should have to wake up with a stiff neck!
    Stay cool, stay safe.

  13. Ceiling fans in most rooms are a must for me in central Florida. Many of mine run 24/7 all year long. A couple of points, for optimum air flow, the bottom of your fan should be around 8 feet from your floor, so if your ceiling height is 12′ like mine, that means using a 30″ to 36″ down rod. When buying a fan, do your research, all fans are not created equal. More expensive, higher quality fans are worth the investment in my opinion. You can usually ascertain how many cubic feet of air per minute your fan move by visiting the manufacturer’s website. Fans with 5 blade or more generally move more air than fans with 4 or fewer blades. The pitch of the blades also makes a difference, most fan blades are pitched anywhere between 12 and 16 degrees, the higher the pitch, the more air is moved. Know that older model fans often have a hole in the motor housing that you can use to oil the fan. Newer models are sealed units. Know that most fans that come with a light kit also come with a cover to install if you choose not to install the light kit. Do invest in one of those ceiling fan blade cleaner tools because fan blades accumulate a lot of dust. A weekly dusting is all it takes.

  14. Greetings! I was firmly in the ceiling fan “must” group but I found fans with lights offensive. I liked the plain and simple white fans in every room. However, last fall I stumbled upon the stunning John Richard Ribbons of Light 12 light Pendent w/ Fan and had to have it. I was delighted that the fan nests inside the pendant. I rarely use the light but I love that it has a remote control for dimming and also for fan speeds. I’m several years post menopausal so I realized I don’t have to have fans anymore. During this pandemic, I replaced all of them with light fixtures except for the combo in my main room. When last in Beverly Hills, I saw an outstanding ceiling fan with several large individual “palm fronds” attached to a long horizontal pole mounted near the top of a very hight ceiling. Their synchronized wafting to and fro was mesmerizing.🙃Btw, although I’ve never lived there, I’m an honorary Indiana Commissioner of Agriculture. LOL.

  15. I grew up in Evansville, too! I don’t remember a single ceiling fan in our house there, but most of the rooms in my current home in Elkhart have them. Probably because it helps us get away with running the A/C less up north. 🙂

    1. Small World. How many times have you been asked, “What’s Evansville close to?” haha. I always say, “Henderson, KY.” 50% of the time I get some strange The other question is, “Oh, that’s close to Chicago, right?” No, they’re thinking of Evanston, IL, of course.

      I lived there between 1957 (a baby) and 1971. I have fond memories of the corn fields on the east side, Green River Rd, the Surf Club,(my home in the summer) Max’s Barbecue where we would eat until we were sick because everything was just so incredibly delicious. Chinese food at F’s steakhouse. The Homestead on the way to Newburgh where we would also eat until we were sick because everything was beyond delicious. Those corn fritters from heaven!

      Oh, and Yabroudy Park which I adored as a very young child. I went to the old Hebron Elementary School on Lincoln Ave and felt sick when I heard they tore it down! Would you like me to keep going? lol

      Also, there’s a FB group called I grew up in Evansville, IN

  16. Very nice post! Having a home in Florida, I also have researched this subject to the nth degree. I found a wonderful 2 blade fan, made by Aertron. The company history is interesting, they have won many awards. On low, it uses the same $ as a nightlight, and are super quiet. After putting 7 in my Florida home, I bought 3 for Michigan. One is even a big ass, in a loft. Thought you might like them too…

  17. Hi Laurel! Please tell me this is a made up letter. I can’t imagine someone really asking for permission to put a ceiling fan in their home if that’s what they want. It’s one thing to ask for your recommendations for a nice looking fan, but jiminy cricket, permission?
    I consider them necessary and wouldn’t dream of caring what others thought on the matter. However, I do know you have never said they weren’t “allowed” and on several occasions have said you totally believe in them. Lovely ceiling fans presented here, which is the real value in this post 😉

  18. Hi Laurel,
    I’m so glad you’re talking about fans today.
    Yesterday I was trying to remove the BooB light from the fan in my family room. I cannot figure out how to remove it, or if it’s even possible. It’s not straightforward like my
    LR fan lights were.
    IF anyone has any clues please offer suggestions.
    Sometimes in the northeast here it’s so dark during the daytime you need an overhead light to see to clean the room…It’s the basic reason why the lights have stayed on thus far.
    Thank you again

  19. Love your blog, Laurel. It is always chock-full of content. You never disappoint! Regarding fans, I agree with most of what you have to say on the subject; however, I would add that I believe a fan should be functional and disappear into the room. I would not want any design that shouts, ‘hey down there, look at me!) I live in the Yucatan and it is hot down here. Fans are absolutely necessary. It was difficult for me at first – every room needs a fan here. I had to make a lot of choices. I’ve found that a simple fan that blends works best.

  20. Could you please tell me why Chantilly Lace did not make your top 20 list? My designer recommends it for my kitchen cabinets and trim throughout the house.

  21. Annie,

    Just a thought – do you have a wall switch for the fan? If so, if you have a three speed fan switch on the wall, you can set the speed on the fan itself to its lowest setting (the one usually set via the fan’s pull chain). Then you can use the wall switch high/med/low setting to bring it down. My understanding is that the “high” setting on the wall switch sets it to the fan’s current setting (low), so you can kick it down further using med and low on the wall switch.

    Make sure it’s a 3-speed switch specifically for fans – they don’t hum, and they perform better than slider controls for speed.

  22. I just moved into a home in Massachusetts where they did so much right (at least for me) – the floorplan, big kitchen, lots of great architectural details, terrific windows with transom lights (overlooking a perfect view), but two dark ugly ceiling fans. One was on the main living level, in a place that nobody spends any time (in front of the entryway closet), and provided no benefit to airflow – I replaced with a white Casablanca Panama fan, and moved it so that it’s actually over the living room, where I needed it.

    The other one was in the master bedroom, with a light that provided no real illumination. I also put a Casablanca white fan there with a light fixture similar to the Minka Aire version you noted. I worried that it looked too boob-light-ish, but it was my only option besides the spotlight type fixture (thanks for warning us about boob lights Laurel – once you see them, you can’t un-see them!).

    Still have some boob lights to get rid of, but I’ll get there. I’m going with the Minka Lavery Harbour Point flush mount for those – they should look great in my harbor front home.

    Thank you so much for covering this topic, I worried so much about that fan light fixture, but it does give me some needed light and convenience.

  23. I was going to complain about modern fans not having a low enough speed setting, but Elizabeth beat me to it. There are some lovely fans here; thanks for collecting them all, Laurel. I’d go for the Aerialist, if looks were the only thing that mattered. That fan in the Furlow Gatewood room really bothers me. It looks undersized, visually and functionally. I doubt it moves much air down where people will be. It really needs a downrod–and while someone is installing that, could they please remove the 12″ pull cord? 😉

  24. Thank you Laurel for this post. I am currently renovating the master bedroom and bath and needed a new fan. I have 8 ft ceilings. I ordered the fan you suggested for 8 ft ceilings.

  25. A Big Ass fan is the perfect fan for you! Read my post just above yours, Elizabeth…you can set the speed, dim the light, it makes no sounds at all. Look up Haiku Big Ass fans online.

  26. I was waiting to see if you would mention Big Ass Fans! If you didn’t, I was going have 3 of them in our home and they are one of the best investments we ever made. Whisper quiet (although you can set them to make a “whooshing sound if you like…think ocean breeze) they are stylish and they also have an app so you can turn them on or off from your phone, iPad or computer. They don’t rock on the ceiling like some ceiling fans do. You’d never know it was on. You can get them with a light (which is built right into the fan) or not. They also come with a small remote control. A bit pricey, (Compared to other fans, but they are definitely not like other fans!) but I think they are worth every penny!

  27. Laurel, I like the designs of the ceiling fans you recommend. However, my beef with ceiling fans, especially in bedrooms, is that the set speeds are much too fast! I don’t want to sleep beneath a cyclone! A slow, gentle sweep is all that’s needed to keep the air moving and the mosquitoes away. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve fallen asleep at an airbnb, hotel or guestroom, only to wake with a sore neck because I was sleeping under a cold windstorm all night. Don’t most manufacturers offer a range of barely-moving to fast-moving fan speeds? My other beef (especially with airbnbs and hotels) is that those who install them never seem to listen to how loud they are when they are running. That little squeak or whirr is multiplied during quiet nighttime hours. Just sayin’

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Hi, I’m Laurel, and Laurel Home is the website and blog for Laurel Bern Interiors.
I’ve been creating new-traditional interiors since 1988. The blog is where I share all.

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