Halloween Ghost Lights

Halloween Ghost Lights Decorations

Halloween Ghost Lights Decorations

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Want to frighten off your trick-or-treating guests? Hang these ghosts onto some bare tree branches in the dark to scare them and have fun :)

I have been playing with glue and gauze pads for a few days. I did a few experiments to check out which glue makes the best “gauze covered ping pong ball ghost lights”.

I found that PVA glue such as Mod Podge is the best among. PVA glue or white craft glue dries into transparent rubbery texture so it gives a better hold for the gauze material and for the ghost to withstand the humid air during a misty night. It can be hung at outdoor under some shades to prevent direct heavy rain (make sure your’ve got the holiday lights for outdoor too).

At first, I thought laundry spray starch is sufficient to do the job. No, I was wrong, it didn’t work out even with the strongest hold. It can’t hold the ghost skirt in floating style and won’t stick on the ping pong ball. This probably due to the loosely woven structure of the gauze material, and also, I didn’t iron it.

Home-made corn starch glue is good but it is too crispy after drying and won’t be able to hold still under wet misty nights, it will “melt”. If you don’t have PVA glue and never think of putting the ghost lights outdoor, then corn starch glue will be an option.

Halloween Ghost Light

The “flying ghost lights” at the background is done by a camera trick called “bokeh lights”. It involves a DSLR camera with a wide open aperture lens and some black card stock to do it. Will make a separate tutorial on this later. Let’s concentrate on how to make this gauze / cheesecloth ghost light in this tutorial for now ;-) .

Below is the complete tutorial on how to do gauze covered ghost lights for Halloween decoration. Happy decoration for the Halloween!!!

Halloween Ghost Lights
Make: 6

1. Ping Pong Ball – 6
2. Gauze pads [4"x4", 8 ply] – 6 pcs. Or loose woven cheesecloth
3. Mod Podge or any PVA white craft glue
4. Holiday lights – single yellow color

1. Permanent black marker
2. Awl or craft knife
3. Egg crate
4. Masking Tape
5. Clean empty container and spoon

Materials to make ghost lightsGet ready all the tools and materials on a table.
Unfold the 4″x4″ 8 ply gauze pad, it should measures around 8″x16″, fold it in to half, i.e. 8″ x 8″. Repeat all the 6 pcs.
If you are using loose woven cheesecloth, cut it into 16″x8″ size and fold into half too.
Don’t worry too much if the sizes are not exactly 8″ x 8″, it won’t affect the ghost look a lot.

Make an approx. 1″ raised platform on the egg crate by rolling a piece of masking tape with adhesive side facing out. Make 6.

Use an awl to make a hole on the ping pong ball. If you ping pong ball has printed label, punch the hole there.
If you holiday light is not LED but small bulb type which is bigger, use craft knife to make a cross cut instead.

Insert holiday light Insert the light into the ping pong and it should be snuggle fit so that it is holding up there.
Remove all the lights from the ping pong balls.

ghost expressionDraw some ghost facials and expressions on the ping pong balls.
It can be just any expression, angry, frightened, worried, happy, sad or even with Dracula look.

Press and stick the ping pong balls on the raise masking tapes.

Dilute about 2 to 3 tablespoons of Mod Podge or PVA craft glue to runny consistency. Add a small amount of water at a time and stir well.
How runny? Something like melted ice cream.

Dip the folded 8″ x 8″ gauze or cheesecloth into the runny glue.
The gauze must be fully dip into the glue so that it get all the glue on it.
Take out and squeeze out excessive dripping glue, still wet but not dripping.
Open up to 8″x8″ and cover the ping pong ball.

ghost stylingSmooth out a few drops of glue on the top portion of the ping pong ball for better adhesion.
The opaque white glue will dry into transparent clear surface, so don’t worry if it covers the markers.

Repeat all six ghosts. Set them aside for at least 24 hours for drying.
While the glue is still wet, lift the bottom gauze to minimize the contact to the egg crate. You can place small pieces of wax paper or freezer paper or parchment paper facing upward to prevent them from sticking.

Insert the light bulbs or LED into the ghosts and hang up for Halloween. If the holes become too small for the LED light to get in after covering up with the gauze, use the awl or knife to enlarge it.
Hanging Ghost

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37 comments... read them below or add one

  1. very cute!!!!!! the pingpongball idea is great! thanx

  2. Superb idea and superb effect!

  3. what a great idea… just got to find the pingpong balls now ;)

  4. Bellisimo!!! Me encanta, es super decorativo y original.
    Muchas gracias por el excelente tutorial.

    Translation (by Google):
    Beautiful! I love it, is super original decorative.
    Thank you very much for the excellent tutorial.

  5. Those are really cute! Very creative. We have a little Halloween Tree too, that these ghosts would look perfect on. I imagine they would be re-usable from year to year. I love them. I went crazy decorating for Halloween this year, indoor and outdoor (and already blogged it all too), so I think I’m done for now. But there’s always next year!

  6. These are just too cute and very clever! I pinned these to my Halloween board. Have to be able to find them again!

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  9. I was SO enchanted by this project! Your tutorial was very easy to follow..within an hour we had our little ghosties dried and hanging off a Spooky Old Tree, lighting up the living room…Love them..and I love your site! Thank you so much for such a terrific posting!!

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  11. Such a great Idea. I sent my boyfriend to get me some Ping Pong Balls and made them yesterday evening.
    I made 12, so I had to search for a few more faces to add… like a pirate or one with sunglases…
    Thanks for that Inspiration.

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  13. What a great idea! Thanks for sharing all these fabulus projects! Maria from Greece :)

  14. Great idea – I love it! Question…where did you find a small string of yellow lights? I can’t find anything less than 50 light strands and everything is white!
    Really would love to make for this Halloween.

    • I bought mine from departmental store during holiday season and I can find yellow lights without problem. White is OK for Halloween :)
      As for reducing the number of lights, get detachable LED or bulds and is workable after removing the excessive lights, otherwise, tape it down with black tape.

  15. Awesome and so cute . Will pin on my Halloween Crafts board . Thanks for sharing !

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