For Halloween I decided to repurpose an old sparkleball. I took it apart, washed the cups, and got supplies ready.
- plier stapler + staples
- black acrylic paint
- 150 orange and black lights
- ziptie + hook for hanging
- 50 recycled solo-style 9 oz plastic cups
Step 1: Paint Cup Rims
Pour a little black paint into a tray. Dip each cup lightly in the paint, unless you like the look of the paint dripping. (I sort of did.) Let cups dry.
Step 2: Drill Bottom Holes
My cups already had holes for the lights. To make holes, drill 1/2" hole in the bottom of each cup. (You can also melt the holes with a soldering iron.) If you're lazy, skip this step and later just stuff lights in the center of the sparkleball.
Step 3: Build 1st Half
1. Staple 12 cups in a ring. (If this doesn't make a nice tidy circle, your cups are the wrong shape or size.)
2. Staple 9 cups in a ring. This one will curl up a bit.
3. Staple 4 cups into 2 pairs.
4. Put the 9-cup ring on top of the 12-cup. Staple one cup onto the cup(s) it sits on. Turn the ring, and staple one cup on opposite side. Make sure rims touch. Staple at 12-3-6-9 o'clock. Then finish so that all cups are attached to bottom ring.
5. Fit one pair in the top opening. Staple it to adjoining cups.
6. Fit in last pair. Staple.
Step 4: Add Lights to 1st Half
I used 150 orange lights with black wire I ordered online. (I also found the same lights at CVS, so they're easy to find.)
1. Put 2-3 lights in each cup.
2. Work from outer rim into the center and back out, until you end up at the cup next to where you started.
3. Set aside 1st half.
Step 5: Make 2nd Half Just Like 1st Half
Do it all again. When you add lights to the 2nd half, start from opposite end of cord so lights meet in the middle when you put the two halves together.
Step 6: Join 2 Halves
Fit the two halves together, adjusting until they nestle nicely. Be careful to keep wires and plug free. Staple halves together. (Clothespins or paperclips make this step easier.)
It's sort of Edward Gorey / Victorian Funeral Card. The dripping paint reminds me of blood :)
Step 7: Make a Hanger
I used a ziptie and hook.