August 5, 2011

Bowling Ball Yard Art Number 2

Way back when I first started blogging, I showed you how to turn a garage sale bowling ball into a piece of yard art. In that case, a penny bowling ball.

I think bowling ball yard art has a sort of cult following, because that post is by far the most Googled of my posts and brings quite a few people to my blog.

This summer I decided to make a slightly different version of bowling ball yard art.

I picked up a bowling ball at my local thrift store. Bud's ball, to be exact.

Some "gem" stones from the mosaic and glass tile aisle at my Hobby Lobby. I used approximately 6 bags of these.

I started off by filling in Bud's finger holes with some wads of paper towels until there was about 1/2 inch still open and then I topped that off with regular old caulking.

Bud had some huge fingers and I didn't want to use up a whole tube of caulking, so that is the reason for the paper towels.

I just used the stuff you would use in a bathroom to caulk around a sink or tub or baseboard molding.

I roughed the ball up with sandpaper a little just to give it a better tooth to grab the glue. I used DAP's Clear Silicone Rubber Sealant for Doors and Windows as my adhesive. Since this was going to be placed outside I wanted something that was waterproof, plus would set up quickly.

Then I glued my gems on to the ball.

This took me two months.

A person with more patience and less ADD could finish the gluing in less than two hours though. And most of that time would be waiting for one section to set up before you go on to the next section.

I decided to grout this ball, so I bought a small tub of the powdered grout from the same aisle at Hobby lobby where I bought the gems.

Grouted half of it. Let it dry.

Flipped the ball over and grouted the rest.

After it was dried, I applied some grout sealer.

And then it was good to go.

I had thought about making one with pebbles on it, since The Dollar Tree has bags of them for $1.00.

But I don't want to become the lady with all the bowling balls in my yard. Then I'd have to change the name of my blog to House of Bowling Balls and there would be a lot of work in making that change.

Can I tell you that I had second thoughts about ever posting this project on my blog. I couldn't decide if it was cute, weird or tacky? So be gentle with me.

BTW, The Summer Kitchen Girls mentioned my penny bowling ball in a post recently. I believe they found me in the first place through Googling images of penny bowling balls.

Oh, and I got some good stuff out garage saling this morning. I'll share the goods with you on Sunday night after I get some photos taken. I tried to take some earlier today, but the sweat dripping down into my eyes was getting in the way of my artistic endeavors.

EDITED TO ADD - It was brought to my attention that the grouting technique wasn't explained thoroughly. I grouted an area by spreading the grout over the gems and pushing it down between them. I let it dry for just a few minutes and then ran a damp sponge over the gems to get the vast majority of the grout off the tops of the gems. If you leave it dry completely on the tops of the gems, it will be very hard to get off later. When the grout was completely dried, I used a clean dry cloth to polish off any haziness caused by the grout residue.

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  1. Crack me up that the penny bowling ball post is your most Googled, Pam!! I think that both of the balls make wonderful garden art, BTW. A lot less expensive than those gazing balls, I'd say. Where do you come up w/these ideas, girlfriend? I may have to go find a ball at GW so I can make a gem one, too. :-)

  2. I think that bowling ball is really cute. I would put it in my garden. You must have a vivid imagination! I would never have thought of making that but my imagination is not very vivid. LOL. Shannon

  3. How do you come up with this stuff, Pam? That's very creative. It would look kind of cool if you would've used the gems to make a number on it or something on that ball. Maybe not, I don't know...I'm trying to be creative like you :)

  4. Now that's one project you don't want to drop on your foot! It turned out cute:@)

  5. Brilliant. I think my husband would really love one of those for his many shade gardens. I can see where this project would take some patience and time. Wonderful job, Pam. You really should be proud.

  6. Well Pam -- I LOVE it. Now I am going to have to round myself up a bowling ball or 2 :)


  7. That took a lot of time and work. It certainly paid of as it is very pretty and a job well done.

  8. Ummm...I'm thinking BUD only had two large fingers and NO thumb-but that is just my own opinion. I LOVE the thought that you might become known as the Bowling Ball Babe! I think that should be the name of your new blog. Tacky? Nah--much better than Little Bow Peep and her cut out sheep- and, who doesn't love a bit of tacky in the yard?

    Yours actually looks better than a lot of the balls I have seen-it actually looks like a "globe" if you ask me. need to line up a few flamingos and make them look like they are trying to peck the stones off you ball...just sayin.....!;>) xo Diana

  9. Look how pretty that is! And it looks like it was so much fun to make too!!

  10. Love the colors on the latest one! If you cover one with pebbles, you can bury it about 3/4 of the ball deep and it won't look like a bowling ball. I actually did cover a bowling ball with river rock several years ago. Found the perfect spot for it, too. But eventually, all of the rocks fell off and there's just a plain, black bowling ball in my yard now. Unless my hubby quietly threw it away.

  11. What a great way to decorate the outdoors! I am wondering, is it heavy?

  12. I absolutely love both of these! In fact, I just "Pinned" both of them. I will have to do this once things calm down and in a new spot.

  13. What a wonderful, creative idea...I love it. Can't wait to do one for myself!

  14. I think it's cute and I can't wait to see you pics of your finds from the tag sales! Andrea @ townandprairie

  15. Hey, Pam! How's one of my favorite blogging buddies! I hope you and your family have been well. I can see you are coming up with great projects -- this seems like a LOT of work! Good for you. Hope you have been having a great Summer!

  16. Oh my them both!! I only spray painted mine. That's true ADD for ya. Instant gratification might have to wait next time I see a bowling ball. Great Job!

  17. Hi Pam!

    I love this. It looks fantasttic.

    Hope you are having a fun weekend.

  18. This really looks terrific. I have my mom's old bowling ball. What a great way to use it!

  19. We did!!! We googled & found you & featured your link on the blog :) We love this "new" garden ball you've created - fun fun fun!! Thanks for the mention...keep coming up with those great ideas?

  20. This is seriously the coolest thing!! I love buds ball now!! I am definitely putting this on my list of things to do.
    I hope you had a great weekend!

  21. I have had a bowling ball for over a year now to do this project. Yours looks great!

  22. I think this is awesome!! I love it, and I'm glad you posted it.

    Pinning this on pinterest. :)

    Tracy Screaming Sardine

  23. Very clever... I love it! And you can never have too many bowling balls with things glued to them decorating your property. No, mam!

  24. I LOVE IT!!! Def going to do this!

  25. This will be on my to do list for sure. Matter of fact may do two and give one to my daughter for Mother's Day.

  26. I love this! I have done other bb projects in the past, and have some extra balls laying around. I am going to try this.

  27. This is really cool. I could do this. And it looks so pretty in the garden. I don't have a bowling ball but I will have to keep an eye out for one. Maybe I could find one at goodwill. Thank you for sharing this wonderful project. Pinning!

    Linda @ Mixed Kreations

  28. me and my grandkids have done a few of these. lots of fun and great memories. one that we made has a little ceramic frog sitting on top. its my favorie. the memories with my grandbabies was priceless!!!!!

  29. Thanks to your penny ball I went out and baught three bowling Balls at GW. I am making a bumbling bee out of one, cover the second with marbles and I am saving 5 cent coins for number three!


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