Introduction: Illuminated Cities Globe


In this Instructables I show how to make a globe with the illuminated cities at night.

It is made in paper mache so it's really simple and cheap to make, and provides a cool new night light!

Step 1: Materials

To create the globe I used the following:


  • News paper
  • Paper mache:
    • Flour
    • Water
  • Round balloon
  • Map of the earth
  • Paint
  • Pencil


  • Map of the earth at night
  • Needle
  • Fiber optics
  • Craft glue


  • 3 bright LEDs
  • 9v battery
  • 220 ohm resistor
  • Battery clip
  • Soldering iron
  • Solder

Step 2: Paper Mache Paste

First off, we have to create our paper mache paste for the globe. You'll need the flour and the water:

1. Pour 2 cups of flour in a bowl

2. Add 2 cups of water

3. Stir until it forms a uniform paste

Step 3: Paper Mache Globe

Now that we have the paste, we can make the globe out of old news papers. You'll need the news papers, the balloon and a small bowl (to keep the balloon steady during the process).

1. Cut the newspapers into strands

2. Dip a strand in the paste carefully and remove the excess paste, if any.

3. Apply the strand onto the balloon

4. Repeat the process until the balloon is covered except the bottom of the balloon

5. Apply 3 to 4 full covers

6. Let dry

Cut the bottom hole of the globe to make it more circular if necessary

Step 4: Continents

Now that the globe is dry, it's time to outline the continents. You'll need the map of earth and a pencil.

1. Use the map as a guide

2. Use a pencil to outline the continents on the globe

My proportions for the continents aren't the best, but it turned out fine enough

Step 5: Marking the Cities

Once the outline is done, we need to mark the main source of lights on the globe (cities). You'll need the map of earth at night and a colored pencil.

1. Use the map of the earth at night as a guide

2. Mark the cities with a colored pencil (red in my case)

Step 6: Fixing the City Lights

For this step, I used fiber optics to create a clearer and more uniform look across the lights. It is optional, as you could only pin holes in the globe and that would work too. (Or, you could take the long way round and have amazing fun with the fibers). You'll need a needle, fiber optics and craft glue.

1. Pin holes on the marked cities with a needle

Next Steps are Optional (for the fiber optics)

2. Cut a piece of fiber about 1/4 of the diameter of your globe.

3. Place the fiber in a hole about half way through

4. Apply a small amount of craft glue on the fiber close to the hole

5. Push the fiber in the hole so the glue on the fiber enters the hole. Make sure to leave a portion of the fiber stick out the globe

6. Repeat for each hole

7. Let dry

Step 7: Painting

In this step, we paint the globe. Now if you only pinned holes and omitted the fibers, this will be a little tricky, as you'll need to make sure not to fill in the holes with paint!

1. Paint the continents around the cities (holes/fibers).

*Fibers: it's alright to have a little paint on them as we'll cut them later on

2. Paint the oceans

3. Let dry

Step 8: Cut the Fibers

In this step, if you used fibers, you'll need to cut them. If not, skip this step.

1. Cut the fibers at the base of the globe with scissors

Step 9: Led Light

Almost done! If you already have an LED light source, you can skip this step, if not, you can make your own (as I did). You'll need the soldering iron, solder, 3 LEDs, 220 ohm resistor and a battery clip:

1. Solder 3 bright LEDs in parallel

2. Solder one 220 ohms resistor to the anode of one of the LEDs (longer node)

3. Solder the black wire of the battery clip on the cathode of one of the LEDs (shorternode)

4. Solder the red wire of the clip on the resistor

4. Connect the 9v battery to the clip

**Note that the light source SHOULD be LED as it is highly unlikely to overheat and prevents chances of fire especially with a paper mache globe**

Step 10: Fixing the Light

That's it! Fix the LEDs under the globe and turn off the lights!

*The lights are brighter in real life than on the pictures*

Hope you enjoyed.

Feel free to leave a comment :)

Epilog Challenge 9

Participated in the
Epilog Challenge 9

Paper Contest 2018

Participated in the
Paper Contest 2018