Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A Burlap Bat Banner {I'm Feeling Batty}

Because, honestly, who doesn't love bats and burlap around Halloween?

You might be reading this on Wednesday morning or later, but I am watching a Halloween marathon with the hubster as I type this (checking another item off of the Fall Bucket List, but does it count if I'm blogging and watching movies at the same time? Also, what is up with Halloween III: Season of the Witch?! So lame.)

Anyway, I digress.

I have a whole lot of Fall decor up in my home, but nothing that is legitimately for Halloween. Being that it's a little more than a week away, I thought I'd get on making something fun and easy to bring a little Halloween spirit into the house.

And so, I present to you the Burlap Bat Banner.

Isn't it fun? I was able to whip this bad boy up in a couple of hours, which means (if you have an awesome nap-taker in the house) that this can easily be done during naptime. High fives all around!

I'll share with you how to make this banner below, but you'll need a few supplies:

Burlap (you won't need much)
Black craft paint
Sharpie Marker
Bat template to trace onto your burlap (you can easily Google around for this)
Foam brush
Hot glue gun & glue

I was super happy because I was able to find all of these supplies at home, so this project was F-R-E-E. More high fives for everyone.

Now, onto the good stuff.

Take your burlap and your template, and trace as many little bats as you'd like.

I feel like this is also a good time to give you fair warning that you'll be exposed to my heinous chipped manicure.
Sorry, friends.
I traced a total of six bats. There's really no rhyme or reason to this, unless you want to get technical about it and you know exactly where you want to hang it, how long you'll need your twine to be, how long each bat shape will be, and how far apart each bat will lie on the twine. I don't like math, so I tend to go with the flow. By all means, though, bust out your algebra/calculus/trigonometry if you need to.

Then (surprise), you are going to cut out your bats. Curse the idea of using burlap because it. is. messy. And your bat ears are getting shaggy (it's okay, though!).

Take your black craft paint and your foam brush and pounce on some paint.

You can see here I didn't get too heavy handed with the paint. Because burlap has such a great texture, I didn't want to hide it under a heavy layer of paint. I let some of the natural fibers peek through, and continued painting all of my little batty friends in the same manner.

They will curl up a little bit, but once the paint has dried (which won't take long at all if you used a light coat of paint), you can shape them back to flat.

This is where you might want to prepare yourself for hot glue gun burns. I guess this is the part where I share with you that there is no easy way to hot glue burlap without also hot gluing yourself. Stay strong, friends, but don't be mad at me/come after me if you get burned. I warned you, fair and square.

You'll want to apply small beads of glue at the top points of your bat on the unpainted side. Like so:

Top tips of wings and ear points.
If you let your glue dry a little bit, you can press your twine into the glue, keeping it taught and straight across the length of your bat and the glue won't be as hot. Or, you can be impatient like me and put the twine on right away and burn off your fingerprints. I suggest the first method. It allows for a bit more control of the twine. It also allows for fewer ouchies.

Repeat the process with your remaining bats and hang them where ever your little heart so desires.

I hung my bats on the random sticky-out wall between my living room and kitchen. The clock is from Target, if you're wondering. I can't find it on the website, though, but it was from the Threshold line. I don't know about you, but I love all things Target and Threshold.

Here's a nice crooked shot for reference. My living room is to the left and my kitchen is to the right of this wall. It's such an awkward wall, and I have a thousand ideas for it. The only one really sticking out to me is to plank this wall with stained wood, but the grille on the lower right is KILLING ME. Any suggestions?

I digress again. Back to bats.

I really think this banner is an easy, fun way to add a little spooky spirit to your home for Halloween. You could easily change it up with a different paint color or different shapes like ghosts, a witch hat, whatever shape you can come up with. If you can't tell, I'm all about versatile and customize-able projects.

So, have you made any homemade decorations for Halloween? Do you have any wonky puzzling walls in your home? Do you think I'm a sucker for burning off my fingertips? Seriously, what should I do about that eyesore of a return air grille? Feel free to share in the comments!

Wanna see where I party? Click here for a list of link parties I participate in.
Also linking up to:
Savvy Southern Style
Imparting Grace
Jennifer Rizzo

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