Sunday, April 26, 2009

Halloween Decorations: Creating Haunted Curtains for Halloween

Halloween Decorations: Creating Haunted Curtains for Halloween

Here's a spooky effect that works great for a Halloween Haunted House or your Halloween party. For this effect we like to use a material called Creepy Cloth. While available in several different colors, the off-white is the only color that will glow well under a blacklight. As an alternative, you could buy inexpensive white cotton curtains, but don't buy those made of a synthetic material as the phosphor's in the "RIT Whitener/Brightener" will not absorb into these types of material.

While white materials tend to glow a little bit under blacklight naturally, we like them to really glow brightly, so we begin by pre-treating them with "RIT Whitener/Brightener" because of this product's high level of phosphor's that is reactive to ultraviolet light. Fill a container large enough to hold the amount of Creepy Cloth that you will be using for curtains with water to completely cover them. A large plastic tub or bucket works great for this. Mix in a box of "RIT Whitener/Brightener" and stir until it is completely dissolved in the water.

Immerse the Creepy Cloth or material you are using into the solution and let it soak for about an hour, stirring occasionally. Remove the curtains from the solution and wring out as much of the liquid as you can. Don't rinse the solution out of the material or the phosphor's that will make it glow will be removed. Hang the Creepy Cloth pieces outside on a clothes line until they are completely dry.

The fluorescent curtains are now ready to be hung over windows and/or doorways using thumb tacks or adhesive tape. Just remember that tape may leave behind adhesive residue and thumb tacks will leave small holes in your wall when they are removed. For trick or treaters, place these on the outside of your windows. For a Halloween party or when you are inviting visitors into your home, hang them on the inside of your windows.

Next, you will want to position your black lights in such a way that the ultraviolet light is directed onto the treated curtains. Make sure that the black light units cannot be seen by your guests. Do not place the blacklight so near to the curtains or any other flammable material that it could become a fire hazard. As an added effect, we place a small oscillating fan behind the curtain to cause them to gently move as if by some unknown and possibly malevolent force.

After Halloween, just fold them up and store in zipper bags until next Halloween.