Sparkleball Snowfolk of Europe

All over Europe people make the most amazing snowmen out of plastic cups.  The French #bonhommedeneige are dapper.  German #schneemann are hearty.  Italian #pupazzodineve are fun-loving.  (I know I shouldn’t generalize, but it’s true.)  The photo at left is from France.  The person who posted it explains that it was created by her colleague’s children for a nursing home visit.  The children made the cheery snowman and delivered him with gifts.  Go to Pinterest, Instagram or Facebook to see hundreds more sparkleball snowpeople and sparkleball santas.


SPARKLEBALL HOW-TO POSTS:
–  FIND THE RIGHT CUPS
 TIPS FOR INSERTING LIGHTS
–  THE BEST STAPLER
–  HOW TO HANG IT – 1
–  HOW TO HANG IT – 2
–  HOW TO HANG IT – 3
–  USING DIFFERENT LIGHTS – 1
–  USING DIFFERENT LIGHTS – 2
–  DRILLING A PERFECT HOLE
–  HOW TO GET IT REALLY ROUND
–  MAKE THE ORIGINAL SPARKLEBALL
–  MAKE ANYCUP SPARKLEBALL
–  CAN I HOTGLUE IT?
–  MAKING MINI SPARKLEBALLS

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“Can I hotglue a sparkleball together?”

 

Carl uses clear silicon caulk on hard cups sparkleballs. He builds the ball with paperclips, puts the caulk between the cups, reclips, and lets it harden for a couple of days.

Yes and no.  Yes, if the hotglue is so hot it literally melts the cups to each other.  This works best on hard plastic cups.  But no, hotglue isn’t great for putting Solo cups together in a sparkleball.  The cups just resist the glue. (There are chemical reasons for this.)   Carl Boro uses silicon caulk on his hard cup sparkleballs.  I’ve used superTAC500, a special hotglue made for plastic, to customize and decorate sparkleballs. Otherwise, I stick to my stapler and gripperclips.  If you are a dedicated hotgluer of sparkleballs, please let us know.  I love to be proven wrong.


Want to make holiday sparkleballs?  Here’s what you’ll need.  Want to make it easy?


MORE HELPFUL HOW-TO POSTS:
–  FIND THE RIGHT CUPS
 TIPS FOR INSERTING LIGHTS
–  THE BEST STAPLER
–  HOW TO HANG IT – 1
–  HOW TO HANG IT – 2
–  HOW TO HANG IT – 3
–  USING DIFFERENT LIGHTS – 1
–  USING DIFFERENT LIGHTS – 2
–  DRILLING A PERFECT HOLE
–  HOW TO GET IT REALLY ROUND
–  MAKE THE ORIGINAL SPARKLEBALL
–  MAKE ANYCUP SPARKLEBALL
–  MAKING MINI SPARKLEBALLS

 

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Getting Your Sparkleball Really Round :)

Many thanks to Sparkleball Master Carl Boro for these techniques.

Tis the sparkleball season!  Time to get stapling! There are lots of videos on youtube to show you how to build an original sparkleball.  But they don’t always show you the best way or the tricks of the trade. That’s why it’s nice to have some step-by-step instructions with a few shortcuts and some technique thrown in.   If you’re a perfectionist (like a few people I know), there are some tricks to getting your sparkleball really round.   These tips of Carl’s may sound geeky, but they’re simple, and they work.

  1. THE RIGHT CUPS
    If 12 cups doesn’t make a tidy circle to start, your cups aren’t solo-style which is essential for the Original Sparkleball.
  2. DON’T OVER STAPLE
    Use only 1 or 2 staples per cup.  This keeps the ball flexible and stretchy as you assemble it.  When you’re done and like the shape, you can add more staples.
  3. STAPLE DEEP IN THE CUPS
    Don’t know why but this makes a difference.
  4. HOW TO STAPLE – 1
    As you join cups, make sure one rim tucks under the other, and the rims touch. Doesn’t matter who’s on top, but the cups should nestle neatly.
  5. HOW TO STAPLE – 2
    When you fit the 9-cup ring on the 12-cup ring, first staple at 4 “compass” points.   When those 4 Cups are anchored finish stapling the rest of the cups to the 12-cup ring.  Really important to get the right shape.
  6. TRUST THE CUPS
    As you settle one ring on top of the other,  you’ll see some cups  sit between two cups (valley) and some sit on top of a cup.  Wherever they sit, staple.
  7. GAPS
    There will be some gaps.  Don’t force cups together.   Instead, reinforce where cups do touch with a few extra staples when you’re finished.

 


more helpful how-to posts:
–  find the right cups
 tips for inserting lights
–  the best stapler
–  how to hang it – 1
–  how to hang it – 2
–  how to hang it – 3
–  using different lights – 1
–  using different lights – 2
–  drilling a perfect hole
–  how to get it really round
–  make The Original Sparkleball
–  make AnyCup Sparkleball
–  making Mini Sparkleballs

 

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Make a Halloween Sparkleball !

sparkleball spider by jason

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
More Posts on Halloween Ideas:
– Halloween 2
– Halloween 3
Halloween 4
Black Beauty
– Black Sparkleball
Fun Halloween Lights

 

 

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