DIY: Glow in the Dark and Light Up 24″ Eyeball Wreath of Awesomeness

I wanted a fun, chic glow in the dark and light up eyeball wreath, a big one, to put out for Halloween. Naturally, I busted out the hot glue gun and the spray paint and whipped this one into existence.

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Where did this idea come from? Last year I fell in LOVE with this Country Living Halloween glow in the dark eyeball deco wreath:
Neat, Now Let's Make it More InterestingI was obsessed with the idea of making one but the only problem was… I didn’t have time to get the eyeballs in and I couldn’t find them anywhere local. 🙁 I pinned it to my Holiday Decorations for Fall Pinterest board and moved on until this year.
I was by no means the only person inspired by Country Living, there were plenty of others who played with the eyeball wreath idea with varying amounts of success. Here are a few I Pinned and used to work out some of my kinks.

I also checked out this Wriggling Snake Wreath by Martha Stewart and decided the grapevine wreath was definitely right for the look I wanted.

It had to be Snakes...I then pinned this one from The Dainty Squid that had a great tutorial and I loved the focal, I just wanted to do fewer eyes.
Love the Fly, Don't You?Finally, I found this one from Strumpet’s Crumpets and decided that her glowing eyeball usage was EXACTLY what I needed, and I pretty much had my finalized idea ready to go.
Who doesn't love glowing eyeballs?
All I needed was to find a few good eyeballs, a wreath, and the same glowing eyeball strand and hope it wasn’t too expensive. A trip to JoAnns yielded a cheap 24″ wreath for under $10.00. I grabbed some nice flat Rustoleum spray paint plus primer at The Home Depot for all of $3.00. I used a $1 plastic tablecloth as my drop cloth for the job and went after it.

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After one quick coat I had some uneven coverage on the interior and exterior curves so I went over those again, all and all the spray paint took under 10 minutes to apply and I was very happy with my results. I’ve yet to be unhappy with Rustoleum spray paint.

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Here’s a closeup of how the black turned out, I picked a flat and not a gloss because the eyes are the focus here, but the flat black does allow the texture of the wreath to shine.

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Then I had the problem of the eyeballs. I searched high and low and was able to find 2 containers of 18 bouncy eyeballs at my local Super Target. That was nowhere near enough, and though everyone last year said they had the eyeball printed ping pong balls at their dollar store, I went to 3 dollar stores and found none. I was really worried about the future of this wreath when the boyfriend came to the rescue with 4 bags of them from my local HEB when he got the baguette for our brunch AND he said they had the lights, too!!! The lights were all of $6, and the ping pong balls were $1.50/8, I ended up with 5 packs.

While at JoAnns for the wreath I nabbed some glow in the dark paint, too. I then set out to paint all the non-lighted eyes with some glow in the dark paint.

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The paint left a slight haze and I left them to dry for about 15 minutes.

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I had 36 bouncy ball eyeballs in pink and blue, 38 ping pong ball eyeballs (I held back two for another project you will hear about in a week or so and didn’t make them glow), and the strand of lights to work with. That’s quite a few eyeballs and I was excited about the amount of depth I would be able to achieve using all of them.

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Then I plotted out my eyeball lights on the wreath. I wanted some irregularity in pattern, and noted that the strand wouldn’t quite make it. This would mean a focal or a bow to come later. I accepted that and moved on.

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I then hotglued the eye lights down and ended up with this.

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I carefully tucked the wires that hung over the wreath shape and used bobby pins to tack them into the wreath itself. Since it’s black on black, I didn’t have to do much to get the wire to blend in.

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I then hot glued in the rest of the eyeballs. I wanted irregularity so I randomly placed them, some on the inside, some on the outside, some really close to others, some really crammed down into the wreath. I made sure there was even coverage and then I finished with a few eyeballs left unused, I’m sure I can come up with fun projects for those soon.

Here’s some detail shots of my finished product so you can get more ideas on placement, I didn’t take pics as I went because my hands were busy with the hot glue gun:

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Here’s the whole thing.

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And here’s how it looks in full dark. I LOVE how it came out.

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I will be adding a bow at the bottom, but overall I’m totally happy with the results and think it’s pretty amazing.

Here’s a quick project rundown:
Time Spent: 1.5 hours
Cost: $27.50
Wreath $8.00
Spraypaint $3.00
Bouncy Eyes $3.00
Ping Pong Eyes $7.50
Eye Lights $6.00

Pro Tip: If you wanted to make it cheaper, you could choose a smaller wreath, the 12″ wreath was $2.99, the 18″ was $5.99. This would also mean you would need fewer eyes and that your lights would make it all the way around. I would estimate that 18′ would be the max the strand could do making it all the way around, and at 12″ you could really get fun with eye light spacing.

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