Simple, economical, and fun. These ping pong ball lights are ideal to make as a family, and can really brighten up your room or patio. They’re so versatile you can hang them virtually anywhere, and you can customize them any way you like.
Things You’ll Need
- Strand of LEDs
- Ping pong balls
- Precision knife
- Silicone or glue (optional)
- Wildflowers, streamers, tinsel, etc… (optional for personalizing)
I love being able to reuse things I have at home, and this project was the perfect way to put my extra Christmas lights to good use. If you’ve also got extra lights handy, just make sure they’re LEDs that stay cool to the touch.
Although I used white bulbs, multicolored ones look great too. White lights emit a warm glow which instantly creates atmosphere in a room, whilst colored ones give a more festive look. But the choice is completely up to you.
Ping Pong Balls
You probably don’t have a huge box of ping pong balls lying around, but don’t worry, they’re easy to come by. Amazon usually offers good deals on bulk orders and can work out much cheaper than buying them in packs of two at your local sports store.
The amount you’ll need depends on the length of your LEDs. Shorter strands tend to have 10 or 20 bulbs, whilst longer ones have about 100. You’ll need at least one ball per light, so once you’ve decided on the lights you’re using, count how many bulbs there are.
It’s always a good idea to buy a few more than you actually need in case any break.
If you like the idea of illuminating an outside patio or terrace, just make sure your lights are rated for outdoor use. To avoid rain or dust getting in, you’ll need to seal the balls with silicone or glue.
I prefer to use silicone, as it’s much easier to peel off if you ever need to access a bulb. If you do use glue, a twisting motion should help get the ball off the light without breaking it.
These lights are so versatile you can hang them practically anywhere. In your bedroom, in a living room, in a tree in the garden, or even use them as a table centerpiece. To give you even more flexibility, you can use battery-operated lights with a built-in timer.
I decided to hang flowers from my lights, but there are so many other ways to personalize them. For instance, using tinsel at Christmas or colored streamers if you’re decorating for a birthday party.
Step by Step Guide
- Cut an X shape into each ping pong ball using a precision knife. If you’re working on this project with your kids, you can place the balls in an empty egg carton to help avoid injuries.
- Grab your strand of LEDs, and push each bulb through the X in the ping pong balls. Make sure the bulb doesn’t touch the inside of the ball, but it should go in far enough so that the whole light is covered.
If you’re not hanging your lights outside, you can skip to step 4.
To avoid rain and dust getting inside the balls, place a blob of silicone around the socket and cover the X. Allow the lights to dry on a flat surface before handling them again.
- Hang your lights up and enjoy the feeling of creating something unique for your home. Once you’ve made them once, I’m sure you’ll spot other places these ping pong ball lights would look great in!