Halloween 2017 Black Paper Cutouts

I decided from the first time I saw this room that I was going to use the chair rail as my plane and not try to bring design below it. The room is filled with dining tables and chairs and I didn’t want to crowd the floor space but the ceilings are really tall so I figured I would use the height (and color) to create a tableau all the way around the room. I also created areas of interest, grouping, normally, one large cut-out with lots of smaller elements. I did try putting tiny 1 1/2″ glow sticks behind the cut-out eyes but it was just too lumpy, so I opted for fluorescent-colored post-it notes. Do not underestimate the impact of decorating with paper.

The black stringy stuff you see hanging from the light fixtures is black trash bags. The kitchen size 13-gallon trash bags make really good light fixture covers and that particular size drapes very nicely over the oversize fixtures. (This facility uses fluorescent bulbs that don’t heat up – keep this in mind when working near light sources.)

Sometimes, and yes, it ALWAYS happens, a cut-out runs right across a wall fixture. I never cover these: I either stop or cut and continue on the other side. Don’t ever cover any security feature such as alarm switches, emergency exit maps, etc.

In this case I cut and then continued around the emergency light and then hung a roosting bat from one of the magnets that holds the dining room doors open.

I wanted the Headless Horseman’s horse in the room but mostly not in the room so I did a hint of him bolting out of a corner.

I’m kinda finicky about elements appearing to really be living in the room instead of just floating on the walls. So my owls, since they aren’t flying, have to be sitting ON something, my roosting bats hanging from something. There is nothing sadder than for a room to look as if a bunch of really bored people slapped decorations up on the wall willy-nilly.

This cut-out was so intricate I didn’t think we would ever get it up on the wall. It even wraps around the corner on the right. I reinforce all the corners and intricate areas on the back side of the cut-outs after I draw them but before I cut; this helps prevent tearing during transportation and installation.

I don’t usually do much cutting in the field of my cut-outs but I felt the “ghostie” and the knots in the trees needed a little delineation so I did A FEW.

My favorite small cut-out was simply a hand reaching out of the ground.

A grouping of even smallish cut-outs can make an interesting tableau all on its own.