If the early part of the 21st century will be known for anything when it comes to home decor accessories, it will be known for its balls.  Seriously, you can’t swing a proverbial cat in any home decor store without hitting a dozen different types of spherical objects that serve no purpose whatsoever other than to sit there and look pretty.  So when I was asked to style the lobby for a local startup whose loft-like offices already sported galvanized metal desktops and a corrugated steel reception desk, I thought it’d be a great opportunity to incorporate everyday building materials like plumbers’ hanging strap into their accessories mix and made these cool balls in ten minutes:


It’s such an easy project, I thought I’d share.  Just in case you’d like to DIY a good set of balls.

What you’ll need:

  • Metal plumbers’ hanging strap (comes in galvanized metal or copper finishes)
  • Short bolts and nuts to fit holes in hanging strap
  • Tin snips or any tool that can cut through thin-gauge metal
  • Ruler or measuring tape

How to make ’em:

  1. 1.  First you need to decide how big a set of balls you want (ba-dum-bum).  I was making mine to fit shelves that were 7 1/2″ deep, so I wanted my balls to be around 6 1/2″ and 5″ wide (I made two sizes, to mix it up a bit).  Create a loop out of the hanging strap, using your ruler to measure the circle you create.  The width of the circle will be the width of your ball.  Cut the hanging strap so that you have just enough overlap to fit a bolt through two large holes in the strap.  Since the strap features alternative large/small holes, you want your piece of strap to start and end with large holes.
  2. 2.  Using this piece of strap as a measuring device, cut at least three more pieces of hanging strap the same size, remembering that you want to start/end with a large hole in the strap.
  3. 3.  Create a circle out of one of the strips of strap (strips of strap–say that ten times fast!), overlapping the ends, and fit a bolt through the overlapped large hole.
  4. 4.  Continue adding your other strips, and tighten a nut on the bolt when you’re finished.
  5. 5.  Line up large holes in stips on the opposite side of the ball and fit another bolt through that end.
  6. 6.  Adjust metal strips so they’re evenly spaced.

Voilà, industrial chic decorative balls.