Wednesday, October 14

I'd Say You've All Gone A Little Batty...

For the bats, that is!

Several of you have asked questions about the bat project through comments and emails, so I figured a "How To" post was in order.

It all started with this photo from

As soon as I saw it, I was hooked...

I was heading to the store anyway, so I bought a fresh pack of construction paper and we got started on the project as soon as we walked back in the door. We cut out lots and lots and lots of bats. I have no idea how many. But I knew that I was only going to be able to pull off the look I wanted with a very large quantity of them. So we kept tracing and cutting and tracing and cutting...

On you can find the template to use for cutting out the bats. Doing this made the whole process super simple...

Now, I have to tell you...this was one of those projects that I was really anxious to get finished (I get like that sometimes). I couldn't wait to see what it was all going to look like, and because of that, I didn't read any of the instructions before I started cutting out my construction paper.

I know. Shame on me.

Had I read the directions before I began, I would have known that the project was meant to be done with stiffened felt, not construction paper...

This would have solved the issues that rapidly revealed themselves after affixing the bats to the house.
(I'll get back to that in a second)

After we cut out the bats, we started to put them up in a sort of wave pattern. I used duct tape to affix them to the exterior of the house, thanks to a tip I received in a comment.

Thank You for that, Danielle!

(Something I also would have known had I read the instructions prior to diving into the project!)

So here is where you get to benefit from my mistakes...

I am going to make a case for using felt instead of construction paper:

(just in case any of you are thinking about using construction paper on your exterior, as well)

While the construction paper was super easy to use, extremely inexpensive and available even at the local grocery store, I realized the morning after putting them up outside that they might not even make it until Halloween.


The tips of their wings had curled up because of the low temperature over night. So, out came the duct tape once again and I taped all of their little curled wings down.

By day two, I could see that the afternoon sun was already fading the black color of the construction paper. They're not too terribly faded, but they are certainly not as black as they were when they first went up.

Between the paper curling from the cold temperatures and the fading from the sun, I'd say that felt is a much better choice.

However, using the construction paper, I was able to cut out five bats at a time. With the stiffened felt (based off of the directions - yes, I've read them now!) it would seem that you can only cut out one bat at a time.


That could end up being a pretty big time commitment depending on how many bats you needed. I would have had to spend an entire evening cutting out bats had I used the felt, not to mention that my hand would have been ready to fall off. But the advantage would be that you could save them and reuse them every year!

I'm thinking there must be a happy medium.

Maybe heavy black card stock?

I'll let you know if I end up having to redo my bats. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they hold out for another 17 days! If not, I'll try the card stock. But next year, I'm going with the felt!

I'll do whatever I need to this year to make sure that we have a house covered in bats for the kids on Halloween. Not only for my own kids, but for the other kids in the neighborhood. I wish you could have heard them as they were walking home from school the day after I put them up. They were just as excited as my kids were over them!

Since so many of you have said that you are going to jump on the bandwagon and decorate your homes with a colony of bats, I would love to hear how you are making them and what you think of the project. Better yet...I would love to see your pictures!

I showed you mine, now you have to show me yours!

Ready for a Real Life photo?

Don't look too closely.
There is a reason that I kept the photo so dark.
It is a playroom after all...

Check out how the bats look from the inside, with the shade pulled down!

The kids flipped out when they saw that after we put them up!

Made them even more excited for Halloween!'s the little things that make them the happiest...

P.S. I hope that helps and that your questions were answered.
If not, let me know and I'll do my best to answer them!