DIY Wax Paper Globes (Alternate Title: Nice Balls)

Apparently ironing 5 boxes of wax paper together to make 10 million wax paper circles wasn’t enough for me, because I’ve had the urge to iron MORE! WAX! PAPER! ever since I finished that stupid chandelier.  BTW I added a bunch of extra circles to it and now I love it, as predicted by those wiser than me in the way of fake capiz shell chandeliers.

Anyway, last summer we had three of those IKEA rice paper globes hanging in the big old California Bay that takes up the corner of our backyard, and then this year I had to throw them out because they were all gray and tattered from being out in the rain all year long.  It’s biologically impossible for me to leave a big giant tree with lots of hanging space undecorated, but I didn’t want to have to shell the cash to rebuy the IKEA paper globes every summer.  Plus they are really meant to be lit, and I know it’s weird but I don’t like stuff like that, where it’s meant to do something it doesn’t. It makes me feel like a failure! Why are the damn things not lighted?

So I made some wax paper globes and hung them up.

Step One:  Cut your wax paper.  It doesn’t need to be any larger than it is wide, so you only need to make it 12 inches long.  (If anyone knows where I can buy BIG wax paper, please let me know, but these directions are for your standard Cut Rite on a roll size).  I find it easiest to cut if you pry the roll out of the package and cut it with a straight edge, rather than tearing it using that stupid metal serrated edge on the box.

You will need 5 pieces for each circle, and you will need 6 circles per globe, so you will need to cut 30 pieces of wax paper for each globe.  I would say if you are judicious with your cutting you could probably get three globes from one roll of wax paper.

Step Two:  Iron the sheets together, five at a time.  I used a few steps up from the low heat setting on my iron, and I didn’t use anything between the wax paper and my iron.  Then again I believe I paid $5 for my iron, and I don’t ever use it on fabric, so I wasn’t too cautious about the whole thing.  Just make a few quick passes over each side of the sheets with your iron.  It should look like this when it’s done:

Step Three:  Trace and cut circles.  I used a pot lid to trace a circle the first time and it slipped all over and I didn’t like how uneven the circles were.  The second time I did this I used a record and it worked a lot better.

You’re jealous of that record, aren’t you?  I used a mechanical pencil for the actual tracing, it seems to almost score the wax paper and makes it easier to cut.

Step Four:  Fold one of the circles in half so you can easily locate the center, and then poke two holes close together.  Two holes toward the top, two holes toward the bottom, and then thread some white or light colored thread through the holes a few times with a needle, and then knot it and trim the threads.   You could also probably use a long arm stapler for this.  In fact, I own a long arm stapler, but I don’t have any staples.  Of course.

Step Five:  Fold each circle in half at the halfway mark or seam.  I also ran a bead of hot glue down the spine of each circle to get each fin to sit at the correct angle, and I think it helped a lot.

Step Six:  Thread with clear fishing line and hang.  My tree is already full of hanging spots thanks to the nails I forced my long suffering husband to pound into it, but otherwise just eyeball where you’d like your balls to hang (heh) and go for it.

And there they are, in my backyard:

I’ll report back on how these fare, but considering they cost me just $2.50 in wax paper, I don’t think I’ll mind remaking them every summer.   I wish I could get the ball on the far left to hang a bit over more towards the center, but there’s no tree branch there, so I guess you take what Mother Nature gives you and do your best, eh?


3 Responses

  1. They look great!

  2. tee-hee! Balls! 😉
    You are brilliant! I love it! and the record idea??? GENIUS!!!

  3. When it comes to balls, I always appreciate it when people take what mother nature’s given them and do their best.

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