Lucky Charm Fairylights

Introduction: Lucky Charm Fairylights

About: Teacher of Engineering & Technology, nerding around with a sewing machine, laser cutter and 3D printer...

While playing around with an Arduino board a few weeks ago, I was feeling a little blinded by the very bright RGB light on the board. Hunting around the house for something to diffuse the light, I found a handful of old ping pong balls - perfect! I snipped one in half, and lay it over the top of the LED, and it was just right for looking at.

I was still looking at the remaining ping pong balls, and wondering where to put them away, when I spotted a string of fairy lights looking unloved. On went the figurative lightbulb, and the Lucky Charms appeared!

You will need:

A string of fairy lights (and batteries if required)
A pair of scissors
A handful of ping pong balls (I only had enough for every other light, it doesn't matter if they're all covered or not)
Felt tips/sharpies

Step 1: Piercing

Now, I used scissors, but the teacher in me suggests that you should be thinking safely, and using something like a darning needle or similar, to make the initial hole in the ping pong ball.

You need to pierce each of them, and then file/cut out the hole so that it is slightly smaller than the diameter of the light bulb. I used the blade of a pair of scissors, and turned it around in the hole, to carve out the excess plastic.

Be careful with this - I slipped on the one in the top right, and made a huge slot, luckily, it wasn't so big it doesn't fit now!

Step 2: Decorate

Using felt tip, sharpie, stickers... Whatever you fancy - decorate the outside of the ping pong balls. From experience, I know that you can marble on them with marbling inks (we made planets with scouts), and you can use some fabric dyes on them too.

I used a selection of lucky charm motifs on mine...

Step 3: Assemble & Enjoy

With a bit of a twist and force, the ping pong balls should pop onto the lightbulbs - it's important that they're a tight fit so that they don't slip off again!

I arranged mine so that every other light was decorated, and the middle ones are left plain - I'll find a way to make those pretty later!

Plug in/insert batteries, sit back, enjoy!

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