I saw this craft idea for decorative twine balls on The Nate Berkus Show last week and decided to give it a try. Here are all the things that you need:

The project is a bit messy but it is just white glue so it cleans up easily.

~Ball of Twine or Jute or String
~White Glue mixed with equal parts Water
~A bowl or plate to hold the Glue

I mixed the glue and water with a whisk. Then I cut off a large piece of string- I didn’t measure- I prefer trial and error to actual mathematical calculations!

I dropped the twine into the glue and water and let it soak for a minute or two.

Then comes the messy part. I used a plastic cutting board to contain the drips and started wrapping the wet twine all over the balloon. The twine tended to slip and slide but I kept wrapping it and tried to cover the balloon evenly.

I set it down on the cutting board and let is dry a bit. I picked it up and cleaned the glue off the cutting board several times. Once it had stopped dripping I set it on a glass overnight so it would continue to harden.

In the morning- I broke the balloon and was left with this ball. It is not bad for a first attempt. I think I would go for more coverage in future attempts.

UPDATE- I decided that the ball pictured above was a bit skimpy so I pushed an empty balloon into the ball and blew it up to the same size. Then I wrapped more twine around it so that the gaps were smaller and the ball had more structure. Here is a picture of the new and improved twine balls.

Improved Twine Balls

Okay so now what? You may be asking. Good question!

These Decorative Twine Balls can be stacked in a wooden bowl or on a tray. They can be covered in glitter or painted. Make a variety of sizes and use them as sculptures or hang them like paper lanterns or use them in your Wedding Centrepieces. I intend to experiment further with this idea but wanted to post the initial results.

Love Bird Wedding Cake Topper and Decorative Twine Ball

Love Bird Wedding Cake Topper is a longtime favourite. It’s sleek styling and simple aesthetic makes it a solid choice for a simple cake topper and a charming keepsake souvenir.

I brought my best one into the showroom to display with our Love Birds Collection. Here it is pictured with the Love Birds Cake Topper. I like it so much I may get one of the cake toppers for my living room- now that I have so many decorative twine balls!

The same technique would work with lace, string, jute, raffia, yarn or thread. Experiment with different materials and stack them all together for an interesting look.

Watch our blog for Centrepiece Ideas coming soon!

Nate getting instructions from Amy Sedaris.  Craft highlighted in her book "Crafts for Poor People".

Nate getting instructions from Amy Sedaris. Craft highlighted in her book “Crafts for Poor People”.

Based on the results of Nate’s onscreen effort- I will assume that “his people” did the prop ones! Don’t worry if yours looks a bit loose and screwy the first time. You will catch on fast and be in production in no time flat. I estimate the cost of these to be about 40-50 cents each. I found the twine in the hardware section of the dollar store and you can make 2-4 balls per roll depending on the density and size of the ball.

UPDATE April 2011: I did a Lunch & Learn workshop at the Ingersoll Public Library and taught this to several ladies- at first they thought I was a loon and were a bit distressed by the messiness. They stuck at it and ended up with a successful attempt- though I don’t imagine they will start doing it for pleasure!