That was a trick question. The answer is that they're not! At least, not all of them.
The process of selecting all of our finishes and fixtures for the house was overwhelming, but choosing lighting was my favorite part. There were just enough options (unlike plumbing, where the right style didn't necessarily come in the right finish, etc.) but not too many options (unlike paint colors, which are infinite). The process started with a foot-high stack of lighting catalogs:
We could immediately rule out 99.9% of the options -- the overly ornate ones, the brassy ones, the super-boring ones, etc. But that left us with a handful of really lovely options, including some nice, modern-but-not-too-modern fans.
Steve picked out this sleek polished nickel one with walnut blades (the Craftmade Grant) for the great room:
And then, choosing fans like he chooses work pants (all khaki, all the time), he picked the same one for the master bedroom:
I chose the Craftmade Midoro (in chrome with black blades) for the office because of the retro office feel:
Steve picked out the Minka-Aire Acero for the exercise room. We like the old school gym feel.
The Acero is, like, totally famous -- the oil-rubbed bronze version is in the Chicago Museum of Architecture and Design. (Get back, paparazzi.)
The Craftmade Midoro (which we used in the office) also comes in oiled bronze, and I thought its slightly amber glass would go nicely with the yellow walls (Sherwin-Williams Parchment)...
...especially when I found this vanity light (from a different manufacturer) that was perfect for the guest bathroom, just a few feet away:
Wrapping up our tour of ceiling fans on the back porch, we put two Minka-Aire Concept fans out there:
(The Concept comes in many versions, including several outdoor-approved models with blades that won't absorb moisture. Nothing ruins porch ambiance like droopy blades.)
Ceiling fans earn green building points (fans create a little breeze to cool your skin, which is way more efficient than turning on the AC throughout the house), so it was a no-brainer to put them in every room -- especially since they didn't cost us any style points.