Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Making Bat Puppets. Fantastic for boys & gals, aged from about 7 or 8 upwards. Fab for birthday parties, Halloween or just busying little fingers!

Darling Son's birthday....10 Boys, aged 7/8...aaargh!!   Fab crafting activity now!  

Musts:  To keep them engaged.  To not involve paint.  Must involve goggly eyes, To do something that doesn't involve them getting changed, just school jumpers off.  For the activity to be done and completed, (with 3 breaks for running off energy half way through - keep them fresh, to consume heartily hot dogs & pizza and lastly to play skylanders...of course!) within 1hr 30 around said breaks. Peasy...ahem!


My lovely childminder taught me this one, the technique also works really well for making monsters...just use different coloured tissue paper.

Here we go:

Gather together:
  • Scissors
  • Old Newspaper
  • Masking tape
  • Black tissue paper, cut into approx 3cm square pieces or smaller.
  • PVA Glue
  • A paint brush 
  • Plant Sticks - easy to find in Homebase or B&Q  (to hold the bat up with)
  • Googly eyes

Children will most likely need quite a bit of help to get the shape right but will indeed be chuffed to nuts having made the whole thing.    However..if time is tightish or you fear your wee cherubs could lose interest, do this first bit yourself...for my son's birthday crafty tea, I made all the bats ready to be painted with glue & tissue in advance (that is far too late the night before...think 5 P's!)

Righto...gather your gubbins:

Dig out some old newspapers, from a broad sheet you are going to need about 3 sheets if not more. Screw up to make a long body thing, about 7inches long (will do the cm thing soon I promise) and about 2 inches round in diameter.  Twist the newspaper round to get this shape then hold into place with strips of masking tape.

Keep shaping using the masking tape..big bits that you can twist around...don't be shy with it.

The wings are just as simple.  Take a sheet of paper, fold into a square, then make triangles so they are quite thick with paper.  Then...using more masking tape (little bits now) make semi-secure for cutting purposes.

Cut a bat-wing shape, secure with more tape and then add wing onto your body until it looks a bit like this...and you have your shape...albeit very unperfect which is just fine (remember its the doing not being perfect!)

Next slather on some PVA glue over a good wing, body or other chosen bit,  You are now ready for your tissue paper.    (This is a great time for the children to take over).


Get your tissue paper ready to go.  Children LOVE this bit.  Cover as much as you can generously lapping on the glue.  

Once you have your model covered entirely, leave to dry or take a hair dryer to it.  (Not too close though obviously)

Artypops Tip*  Your model can become over glued and when little fingers try to put our object down, they can take a load of tissue with them!  At this point, pop in the sun, airing cupboard or take the hair dryer to it.  If you are leaving it to dry au-natural, it should only need about 40 mins.  Feel free to turn it over if its drying in a funny shape.  

When its all dry, you will find our model wonderfully secure..hence all the glue drying and protecting it...lovely eh?

Righto then, we should be at this point:

Now add on the all-important googly eyes and the fangs (tiny white triangles under the eyes at the front) for instant recognition.  (nearing the end now)

Next, take our plant stick.  Adults, make a hole underneath near the centre somewhere.  A good deep hole but not wide, I used the end of a pair or sharp scissors.

Insert your plant stick and it should be pretty secure due to the density of the rolled up newspaper inside.

Lastly...whilst your bat in on the stick and needs no holding, touch up any black bits with either newspaper or marker pen, either is dandy.


Well done everyone! 

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