Bat Wings


These wings are made of black dot lamé glued to a wire frame.

You’ll need 6 wire coat hangers, about 4 yards of fabric or PVC and some glue. The amount of fabric you need is the wingspan of the frame times 2, I used about 4 yards.

Straighten out the hangers as best you can. Bend the first one into a fairly wide spread V leaving one arm of it 4-5 inches longer. The longer arm will be twisted together with the longer arm of the other wing. Bend two more hangers in approximately the same shape, but with the V’s being narrower and narrower. Twist all the longer arms together, but not too tightly, you don’t want to make them any shorter. Wrap a bit of tape around the twisted arms so that they move as a unit, instead of 3 coat hangers. Do this again for the other wing then twist the bottom few inches of the long arm of each wing together {Fig. 1}. Tape these together.
Fig. 1 Now, lay out the fabric on the floor. Smooth out enough of one end to lay the wings on. Lay the wing frame on top of it, even out the spacing of the wire and make sure the fabric will cover one side of both wings. Once you have the spacing right put a light layer of glue along the wire, leaving the extra few inches of the center part uncovered. Carefully flip the frame over . Smooth out the fabric as necessary so it is fairly taught between the wires.

Put glue on this side of the wire like you did before and put a very thin layer of glue on the fabric between the wires. Carefully fold the rest of the fabric on top, smooth it out as much as possible making sure the glue will make a good seal between the fabric sheets so that once you cut the wing shape out, it won’t gap. Let it dry at least overnight. Don't use so much glue that it bleeds through the fabric and looks groose, just enough so that it sticks.

Once the glue is dry carefully trim the fabric around the wire, when you get to the bottom of the wing arc up just a bit to get the bat wing shape. Be conservative about how you trim, you can always trim more, but if you cut too much, you are screwed. Trim well and fold the excess over neatly which can be secured with more glue. You can also use fat piping aroung the wire before covering it to accentuate the ‘veins’.

You can attach these to your person in many ways. I made a belt out of very wide elastic that I attached the extra wire of the wings to, then I wear my corset over them to keep them erect. They move just enough to look “natural” when I move. You can also make a harness out of elastic that makes an X across your back and goes around your arms . For heavier, more sturdy wings see the Dragon Wing project