Time to get cracking on those Halloween sparkleballs and costumes. Be on the lookout for orange mini-lights at your drugstore or hardware store. Of course, everything you need can be found online, including Solo Cups and hard plastic orange and black cups.
Click photos for more info.
top photo: Jason Clouthier’s Sparkleball Spider with Skull Face / Massapequa NY
Here’s an easy checklist to nudge you gently forward on making the sparkleball you’ve always wanted. With the materials on hand, you’re halfway there.
1. Cups. When you’re grocery shopping, back-to-school shopping, or at the pharmacy look out for Solo 9oz tumblers. They come in packs of 40s and 50s, and you’ll need 50 cups per ball so buy more than you think you need.
2. Stapler and staples. Once you’ve got the cups, test the stapler you have to see if it works to join two plastic cups. No? You’ll need a plier stapler. I bought my Arrow at Ace Hardware. And don’t forget staples!
3. Drill and 1/2″ bit. This is for the holes in the bottom of the cups. Got a drill? Got a 1/2″ drill bit? Got a friend who does? You’re in business. If you’re going to make a bunch of sparkleballs, invest in a step drill bit which is made specially for drilling plastic. (You can also use a soldering iron to burn the holes in, but you’ll need really good ventilation.)
4. Lights. You need a string of 100 minilights to put 2 per cup. Do you have an old string? If not, gather all the other stuff, and when the lights hit stores in October, Voila! You’re ready to make your sparkleball. Want battery lights? Amazon has some good ones.
5. Hanging stuff. You’ll want to hang it right away, so check out this pinterest page for ideas about hanging sparkleballs. An extension cord comes in handy.
6. Party. Share this post with friends and plan a sparkleball party together. That’ll git ‘er done, as my stepdad Bill says.
Fran, my neighbor across the street, always rates my sparkleballs. After all, she has to look at them. The newest one scored an A+. “Black Beauty,” as Fran calls it, is an Original Sparkleball with black cups inserted inside each clear cup. The black cups are Hannah K brand from Amazon. I intended to use them by themselves to make a black sparkleball for Halloween, but the ball didn’t come out right. So I added them to a clear sparkleball. This will work for any cup you can drill or make a hole in. As you add lights, put a black cup inside a clear one and insert lights through both. The Hannah K cups come in lots of cool colors which will be fun for the holidays.
Planning ahead for the sparkleballs I want to hang at Halloween has made the month of October a lot more fun. This one is made of hard cups I found at the grocery (Party Essentials brand*). They are solo-shaped but just a bit different, so I used Carl Boro’s recipe 14-11-6-1. I put it together with the hot-glue method for Hard Cup Sparkleballs here. Love how shiny the hard cups are!