Dec 12, 2011

Chicken Wire, Lighted Christmas Balls. 'Tis the Season!

Lighted Christmas Balls made with chicken wire are a unique and festive decoration in any yard or chicken run. In Greensboro, North Carolina, they are so popular that making them as a community has become a major, annual fundraising event for the benefit of local charities. Many of their streets are lined with house after house of lighted Christmas ornaments; truly a sight to be seen. Give passers-by in your neighborhood something to at as the glowing globes dangle from your unique Christmas trees. For little more than a 20 minute time investment and approximately $3.00 per ball, a stunning, outdoor display can be created that will be the envy of the neighborhood! So grab your gloves and give them a try!




The hanging is the tricky part. Ours are displayed in the trees in front of our chicken coops.

Materials
A 46 inch length of two foot chicken wire (1" mesh)
A pair of work gloves
(2) strands of 100 count mini Christmas lights
Wire cutters & a tape measure
 3 prong, outdoor adapters
outdoor extension cords

HOW TO
1. Measure & cut a 46 inch length of wire from the 2' roll.
2. Form the cut ends into a cylinder and begin twisting the cut ends together.
I found this to be the easiest method for joining the sides together. Twist opposing, braided ends around each other once.

With the first seam completed, there will be a 46" tall cylinder that looks like this:

3. Next close both ends of the cylinder, one at a time. Avoid creating a square-ish end rather than round by overlapping and joining three or four segments as you go around the perimeter (versus joining just two segments as is the temptation). This is the only tricky part of the project.

Follow the same procedure on the other end and then begin molding the wire until it resembles a sphere.

 4. Loop the male end of the lights through the wire, secure it with a simple knot and  wrap the lights around the ball as shown.

This is how a ball looks after only one strand of lights has been added.
Plug the second strand into the female end of the first strand  and finish stringing the lights around the ball. Tie off the female end of the lights to secure it in place.

That's it! They're ready to hang in trees!  A three-prong adapter, several extension cords and some creativity will be involved in getting them attached and positioned in a tree.
We secured a ball of heavy twine to the pop tab of a soup can and threw it up and over a limb. When the can came down, we detached the twine from the can and attached it to a lighted ball, then hoisted the ball up into the tree.  Repeat with the remaining balls, connect to a power source and light! (that sounds a lot easier than it is.)


The DIY Dreamer

22 comments :

  1. Kathy you are amazing!! I'm 'stealing' your ideas for both the egg ornaments & your Christmas balls!! I'm going to add some pine tree 'pieces' to my balls & maybe try to 'fill' them with pinecones... we'll see! LoL! Thank you for sharing your creative ideas!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you Cami D! I'd love to see your creations when you're finished with them! If you'd like to post them on my Facebook wall, that'd be great! http://www.Facebook.com/Egg.Carton.Labels.by.ADozenGirlz

    Sharing is totally my pleasure. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Every year I say I'm making chicken wire X-mas lights (BIG ONES) to hang up outside,...and every year I forget till its almost X-mas.

    ReplyDelete
  4. TheChickenChick5/14/13, 11:51 PM

    You can customize it to your needs by cutting it smaller.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have a friend that is looking for these for his yard. Can I buy some from you since I am not handy at all? Please email me at willncary@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. Linda Ljung Cranford11/19/13, 10:38 AM

    My home town!! Great idea!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Denise Allison Magil11/19/13, 12:38 PM

    great

    ReplyDelete
  8. I live just south of Greensboro, NC and looking forward to Christmas. I think I will try to make some of these for my chicken run and around the house....Thanks for info

    ReplyDelete
  9. PeggyAnn Duckless12/3/13, 10:12 PM

    I'm going to do this. Great Idea!! ^_^

    ReplyDelete
  10. Tammy Townsend12/4/13, 7:12 AM

    Thanks for sharing this. I can't wait to give it a try. I'm hoping for some Christmas spirit in my yard :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Laura Adrian Smith12/4/13, 3:20 PM

    I live in Greensboro, NC and LOVE driving through the neighborhood who does this. It's so beautiful! Last year they started a tradition of running a 5K through the neighborhood and they raise a lot of money. It was the easiest 5K I ever ran - so festive! :) It's called The Running of the Balls if anyone in the area wants to sign up!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Andrea Manfredo12/4/13, 4:27 PM

    Fantastic idea,will have to give it a try. I was getting tired of hanging the same lights in the same place. Thanks Kathy, you're the bomb!

    ReplyDelete
  13. LaDonna Martin12/4/13, 8:59 PM

    LOVE your lights!

    ReplyDelete
  14. TheChickenChick12/4/13, 10:34 PM

    Thanks LaDonna!

    ReplyDelete
  15. TheChickenChick12/4/13, 10:37 PM

    Awesome!

    ReplyDelete
  16. TheChickenChick12/5/13, 11:16 PM

    Let me know if you make them, Tammy!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I TECHNICALLY LIVE IN ATLANTA BUT SINCE MY HAD CANCER SURGERY A FEW MONTHS BACK I MOVED BACK HOME BACK A YEAR AGO AFTER 30 YEARS TO BE BY HER SIDE, AND WOW WHILE DRIVING THRU GREENSBORO LAST YEAR THIS TIME I HAD SEEN THESE LIGHTS AND AGAIN JUST THE OTHER DAY AND WENT GOOGLING AROUND TRYING TO FIND WHERE I COULD BUY MY MOTHER THIS BALLS OF CHRISTMAS LIGHTS AND STUMBLE ON YOUR BLOG-SITE WHILE AND YOU MAID THESE LIGHTS, THEY ARE SOMETHING TO BEHOLD "QUE LINDO", MUITO BONITO- NOSSA.(W0W), AND LEGAL(NICE)------- I WOULD PATENT BECAUSE THIS YOUR IDEA AND I NEVER SEEM ANY CHRISTMAS LIGHTS LIKE THIS BEFORE.

    SO CHICKENCHIC YOU GOT THIS GOIN-ON MAMI

    NOW OFF I GOTO TRY MY HANDS AT MAKING THESE FOR MY MOTHER

    ReplyDelete
  18. ANTONY GORRELL-R'VLLE VIA ATL12/8/13, 6:26 AM

    I TECHNICALLY LIVE IN ATLANTA BUT SINCE MY HAD CANCER SURGERY A FEW
    MONTHS BACK I MOVED BACK HOME BACK A YEAR AGO AFTER 30 YEARS TO BE BY
    HER SIDE, AND WOW WHILE DRIVING THRU GREENSBORO LAST YEAR THIS TIME I
    HAD SEEN THESE LIGHTS AND AGAIN JUST THE OTHER DAY AND WENT GOOGLING
    AROUND TRYING TO FIND WHERE I COULD BUY MY MOTHER THIS BALLS OF
    CHRISTMAS LIGHTS AND STUMBLE ON YOUR BLOG-SITE WHILE AND YOU MAID THESE
    LIGHTS, THEY ARE SOMETHING TO BEHOLD "QUE LINDO", MUITO BONITO-
    NOSSA.(W0W), AND LEGAL(NICE)------- I WOULD PATENTTHIS YOUR
    IDEA AND I NEVER SEEM ANY CHRISTMAS LIGHTS LIKE THIS BEFORE.

    SO CHICKENCHIC YOU GOT THIS GOIN-ON MAMI

    NOW OFF I GOTO TRY MY HANDS AT MAKING THESE FOR MY MOTHER

    ReplyDelete
  19. thank you for showing me / teaching me how its done...next year my front tree will be all dressed up.

    ReplyDelete
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