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Decorative Balls and Temari

Updated on November 15, 2015

Unique Home Decor

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Temari: Did It Influence Today's Decorating Ideas?

The first time that I visited someone's home and saw a beautiful basket of decorative balls, I wondered how in the world someone decided that balls could be used as decoration. I was in The Mercantile, a delightful shop in Pendleton, South Carolina, and asked one of the talented gals if she knew the history of decorating with balls. She started telling me about Temari which I had never heard of. I decided that the Ancient Art of Temari must have influenced the present form of decorating with balls, orbs or spheres. I feel like there must be a significance behind them such as bringing peace and tranquility into your home but I have never read or heard anything like that. I guess we can pretend. I did read that the colorful threads were symbolic of a happy and brilliant life. This was part of the article on Wikipedia.

Today, you can find them in just about any color and made from wood, ceramics, and natural fibers. They are so unique and look lovely sitting in a basket or bowl either on a table or on a hearth. Christmas Balls are also used in glass containers for Holiday Decorating. Some people are hand painting their own or creating them from things they find around the house. They are all interesting to look at, I think.

Photo: This picture shows one set available on Amazon.com. See below for link. You will also see other Decorative Balls for sale below.

Learn More About the Ancient Art of Temari

The Temari Book: Techniques & Patterns for Making Japanese Thread Balls
The Temari Book: Techniques & Patterns for Making Japanese Thread Balls

This book offers patterns and information for those interested in learning this beautiful Japanese Art Form.

 

A Book about This Japanese Art Form - This book sounds very informative.

This ancient art form of creating balls is practiced today. The more I read and learn about Temari the more interested I become in the possibility of creating something myself.

Temari on YouTube - Enjoy watching these wonderful videos of the art of Temari

I hope you enjoy watching these videos as much as I have. I really had no idea that there was so much available online about this ancient art form. Very interesting, indeed! Actually, I find this to be amazing and find it difficult to believe that I made it to my old age before learning about it. These videos make it look so easy but I know that it is not. I do lean toward being artsy and have done crafts all my life but for some reason, I am just not too handy when it comes to threads. I feel like I have two left hands. I used to do some cross stitch but was never very good at it. Since this doesn't require using a needle, I might be more inclined to give it a try.

Learn to make Japanese Thread Balls known as Temari - Are you familiar with Temari?

Learning the art of Temari sounds like fun but I imagine it is difficult to do and takes a lot of patience and practice. I am really not sure that I could do it. The silk thread colors are so vivid and vibrant. It would be a joy just to work with the thread and create something special.

A Great Site for Learning More About Temari - Check out this website by someone who knows

The Ancient Art of Temari is still practiced today by some very talented people. I found this website very interesting and informative. If you are like me, I knew very little about this art form and wanted to learn more. Not that I would be able to duplicate any of these wonderful pieces, but just because I found it fascinating.

Temari on Happy Stitch Blog

The photos on Happy Stitch are public domain
The photos on Happy Stitch are public domain | Source

What do you think about Temari and today's trend to decorate with balls? - Is there a connection?

Do you think that the trend of decorating with balls was influenced by Temari?

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Beautiful!

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The Difference Between Temari and the more common Decorative Balls

Temari is an ancient art form

Japanese Temari Balls are delicately embroidered balls using silk threads while the more common Decorative Balls seen today are made from wood, glass, ceramics, or natural fibers. I am sure you have seen them in furniture stores or magazines. It is simple yet makes a statement and are very pleasing to the eye.

Mothers originally made the Temari balls for children to play with and would give them to their child on New Years Day with a message inside. It actually began in China and then spread to Japan. They originally were made out of scrapes from kimonos according to Wikipedia. Over the years the mothers began making the balls more and more ornate until they became a prized family possession that were shown off in the home. I can't imagine going to all that work and then letting a child play with it. I just don't know if I could do that. I would want to show it off and keep it forever.

The fact that both types of balls are round and are used for decoration are the only things they have in common. I do think it takes a certain artist's eye to really appreciate the look and see how it can add to your d├ęcor. I have also seen these balls inside of clear glass lamps. There are so many ways that they can be displayed and enjoyed. You may want to start with a creative idea for the holidays and use some of your old Christmas Ornaments. It all seems to be the same concept.

With so many designs and colors, it is hard to choose but let me know which is your favorite by joining this poll below. I know it depends on what part of your home you are decorating or thinking of decorating but you may have a favorite anyway. Maybe you don't like any of them and would like to see something different. Let me know in the guestbook below. Thanks. I just chose some of my favorites to feature below but there are many, many more to choose from on Amazon.

Whatever the reason for using them, I think both the Temari balls and the Decorative Balls used today are both very interesting and fun to decorate with. They are sure good conversation pieces.

More Common Decorative Balls on Amazon.com

There may not be any connection between the more common ones of today and Temari but I think it is possible. Here are a couple of common ones but you can also find them made from wood, ceramics, natural fibers and even glass.

Hand painted with words

Decorative Faith, Family, Friends 4" Diameter Balls - Berry Twigs, Sheep, Stars - Country Rustic Decor
Decorative Faith, Family, Friends 4" Diameter Balls - Berry Twigs, Sheep, Stars - Country Rustic Decor

I have seen these used in a large basket on a coffee table and it was beautiful. They would look great on an end table also. If you have country décor, these would really look wonderful.

 

Decorate with Words - Make a Statement

With warm words in warm colors, these would be a great conversation piece. Can't you just hear the comments. Who wouldn't like to discuss:

FRIENDS, FAITH AND FAMILY

These spheres are hand painted and a reminder of what is important!

Bowl and Ball Centerpiece

Gifts & Decor Artisan Deco Bowl and Ball Centerpiece
Gifts & Decor Artisan Deco Bowl and Ball Centerpiece

These Tribal Carvings make for a very striking decorative piece. This is the one shown in the introduction.

 

Artisan Deco Bowl and Balls - Very striking addition to your décor

This complete set of Bowl with Balls would really make a statement as a centerpiece.

This would also be lovely on a coffee table or even on a hearth.

Search around on Amazon to find more textures such as Natural Willow.

Natural Willow ones will go with anything and be great accent pieces for your home. My daughter had some similar to these but they were larger. She had them on her hearth in an antique wooden rice basket and they were so beautiful and captured your attention when you entered the room. A very unique and natural look.

Which is your most favorite? - Do you see a set that you like the best?

Which set is your favorite?

See results

Thanks for Visiting!

Hope you enjoyed!

What Do You Think?

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    • Wednesday-Elf profile image

      Wednesday-Elf 2 years ago from Savannah, Georgia

      Those Temari balls are beautiful. I appreciate the artistic flavor to them. They would make very attractive room décor.

    • OhMe profile image
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      Nancy Tate Hellams 4 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @sybil watson: I've seen those green balls like that and love the way they look.

    • OhMe profile image
      Author

      Nancy Tate Hellams 4 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @Diana Wenzel: I do like the looks of the willow ones, too. They are all so unique, I think.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 4 years ago from Colorado

      It was so interesting to learn about Temari here. Anything Japanese is very appealing to me. I've always liked the type of decorative balls featured on this lens. They would fit in well with my décor (especially the willow ones). Enjoyed my visit. Thanks!

    • profile image

      sybil watson 4 years ago

      We have a collection of Japanese green glass balls that were used as floats for fishing nets. They just show up on the beaches from time to time. I'd never heard of Temari, but it's certainly beautiful.

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 4 years ago

      You have a beautiful collection here! Thanks

    • OhMe profile image
      Author

      Nancy Tate Hellams 4 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @gottaloveit2: I know exactly what you mean. Our Bruno would have his mouth stuffed with balls and would eat them all up, for sure.

    • OhMe profile image
      Author

      Nancy Tate Hellams 4 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @KarenCookieJar: I like the natural looking decorative balls, don't you?

    • OhMe profile image
      Author

      Nancy Tate Hellams 4 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @Mellithorpe: I hope you will create a lens about Temari. I would like to know more about it

    • Mellithorpe profile image

      Mellithorpe 4 years ago

      Thank you so much for reminding me about Temari. I used to make these and haven't thought about them in years. My husband bought me some of the blue china balls that I have sitting in a basket that sort of looks like a boat. I will treasure them always.

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 5 years ago from Central Florida

      I really liked the blue china balls. They would look lovely in a bowl on my coffee table.

    • profile image

      KarenCookieJar 5 years ago

      I have a set of 3 willow balls, but I would like to get other sets.

    • Bill Armstrong profile image

      Bill Armstrong 5 years ago from Valencia, California

      Great ideas

    • gottaloveit2 profile image

      gottaloveit2 6 years ago

      What a fun lens! I love all of the pictures of the interesting balls. I'm sure though that if I tried decorating with balls, one of 6 dogs or the confused cat would have, well, a ball...

    • profile image

      Ruthi 6 years ago

      What a unique and interesting lens the decorative balls and Temari make!

    • dschandar profile image

      dschandar 6 years ago

      Decorative Balls made a lens very decorative. Nice

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      This lens caught my eye while leaving a comment on your profile page because I just recently purchased some decorative balls, they are actually the ones on the side bar of this page, the natural look and I love them, they are so pretty. Great lens :)

    • norma-holt profile image

      norma-holt 6 years ago

      Very interesting. Have seen decorative stones, e.g. used in a glass vase to hold flowers and so on, but not balls.

    • ZenandChic profile image

      Patricia 6 years ago

      I like these. They are very cool! Merry Christmas!

    • profile image

      LOLteez 6 years ago

      I love these decorations! Didn't know there was a name for it, though.

    • WildFacesGallery profile image

      Mona 6 years ago from Iowa

      So many lovely variations. Nice. :)

    • chefkeem profile image

      Achim Thiemermann 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      I've always wanted more decorative balls. Now I know how to get 'em. Thanks, OhMe! :)

    • Sensitive Fern profile image

      Sensitive Fern 6 years ago

      Besides tamari, I've never heard of decorative balls. Interesting!

    • MargoPArrowsmith profile image

      MargoPArrowsmith 6 years ago

      Whoever started this, they are beautiful!

    • profile image

      seegreen 6 years ago

      How pretty. I have seen decorative balls around, and at Christmas I will sometimes buy a few, but I had never heard of Temari.

    • blue22d profile image

      blue22d 6 years ago

      I've never seen these that I am aware of. They are pretty. Great lens.

    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image

      ElizabethJeanAl 6 years ago

      What a cool idea. I never really thought about decorating with balls. It's a neat idea.Thanks for sharing

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I'm so glad that you are so daring the tackle a title like this Nancy.I love the decorative balls the you selected and displayed so well. Wishing I was a Squid Angle yet so I could bless this lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      These are beautiful and your lens so educational! I did not know the history, so appreciate your including that! Well done!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Beautiful decorative balls! They are great accents! I learned something else from you! Blessed!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      How fascinating ,Ohme you can find the most interesting subjects. Thanks for all the info.

    • FanfrelucheHubs profile image

      Nathalie Roy 6 years ago from France (Canadian expat)

      Original ideas, there is some very nice ones indeed. I could certainly put a couple to add accent to a room.

    • ssuthep profile image

      ssuthep 6 years ago

      Great lens. I learnt something new here - Temari balls - had never heard of them before. Looks very pretty and great for decorations.

    • Charlino99 profile image

      Tonie Cook 6 years ago from USA

      I've seen them, but never knew one of the technical names for them was 'temari.' After reading your information, I've come to realise that our golden retriever has been decorating our home with tennis balls for years.

    • jptanabe profile image

      Jennifer P Tanabe 6 years ago from Red Hook, NY

      We used to have (maybe still do somewhere!) a set of Japanese Temari balls that my daughter loved. They are really delightful. Other types of decorative balls are lovely too though. Good way to decorate!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I've had some for years. Didn't know what they were called. I just thought they were pretty. I've also purchased some for my girls for Christmas!

    • profile image

      RuthieRu 6 years ago

      Wow!! I never knew this, thanks for teaching me something new today! I have always loved decorative balls as accents and it is great to know the history.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I have never heard of these, but they sure are gorgeous! And I'm thinking they would be much easier to look after (for me) than plants :-) - Kathy

    • kateloving profile image

      Kate Loving Shenk 7 years ago from Lancaster PA

      Funny to think of sticking cloves in an orange, Lol! A friend gave me a decorative Christmas ball one time that I keep out all year around. A few more would be even more lovely!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      The Tamari balls are so pretty! I've seen gorgeous blown glass balls for decorations but these have a charm all their own. I used to do white crochet over the plain Christmas ornament balls. Maybe I need to try a new twist on it. :)

    • CherylsArt profile image

      Cheryl Paton 7 years ago from West Virginia

      This is so cool. I've painted wooden eggs before and both make wonderful decorations.

    • profile image

      JHFSEO 7 years ago

      I remember my mom making these, (the thread balls), and not really thinking about the name or their source. Great resource, and great design ideas with other ball forms, particularly the willow balls which I see a lot. Nice lens.

    • OhMe profile image
      Author

      Nancy Tate Hellams 7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @Fcuk Hub: Wow, Temari fascinates me. Do you have any that she has made? I would love a great photo of some real ones to post here.

    • OhMe profile image
      Author

      Nancy Tate Hellams 7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @GrowWear: They make me happy, too but I really don't have any. I need to get some of these.

    • OhMe profile image
      Author

      Nancy Tate Hellams 7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @AlisonMeacham: Do your balls have Mickey and Minnie's pictures on them?

    • OhMe profile image
      Author

      Nancy Tate Hellams 7 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      @pkmcruk: Thanks for the visit and comment and blessing. Actually, the Japanese threaded balls are the only ones called Temari. I need to figure out how to make that clearer. Thanks again.

    • pkmcruk profile image

      pkmcr 7 years ago from Cheshire UK

      Aha! now I know what the bowls of decorative balls we have dotted around are actually called - isn't Squidoo wonderful for teaching you things you should know LOL Great lens and as always beautifully presented.

    • AlisonMeacham profile image

      AlisonMeacham 7 years ago

      I have some of these in my Disney home and I really like then.

    • Wednesday-Elf profile image

      Wednesday-Elf 7 years ago from Savannah, Georgia

      These decorative balls are lovely. I can see how they would make a beautiful display.

    • profile image

      GrowWear 7 years ago

      Something about decorative balls makes me feel happy. :) These are beautiful.

    • Fcuk Hub profile image

      Fcuk Hub 7 years ago

      my grandmother used to make them

    • jmsp206 profile image

      Julia M S Pearce 7 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

      I love these decorative balls! They look great in a glass bowl on a coffee table or hall stand.

    • jimmielanley profile image

      Jimmie Lanley 7 years ago from Memphis, TN, USA

      Intriguing. Your title got my attention right away. Anything beautiful can be use for decoration. I have lots of river rocks in my home. Placed in glass and wooden bowls, they are very gorgeous.

    • seashell2 profile image

      seashell2 7 years ago

      I like the ones with the words on them! I also have some dark colored balls featured in a large glass bowl, these ones have tiny pinecones on them. Great for fall! Thanks for sharing!

    • RhondaAlbom profile image

      Rhonda Albom 7 years ago from New Zealand

      We have a bowl of balls on our table. Looks like the willow balls above, only ours are not natural as they are glittery silver.

    • mbgphoto profile image

      Mary Beth Granger 7 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

      You have found some beautiful balls! They are quite lovely.

    • profile image

      SofiaMann 7 years ago

      I like all types of decorative balls. Thanks for the info. Beautiful lens.

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 7 years ago from United States

      They are quite lovely and of course, I like the animals :)

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 7 years ago from Arkansas USA

      I've never heard of temari balls, but I absolutely love these! What a nice selection. I love the simplicity of the balls and the gorgeous patterns. Our house is mostly decorated with Daisy's balls - and her bones and other dog toys - but I would love to add a basket of pretty temari balls for myself!

    • WindyWintersHubs profile image

      WindyWintersHubs 7 years ago from Vancouver Island, BC

      Very Decorative Balls!

    • Heather426 profile image

      Heather Burns 7 years ago from Wexford, Ireland

      HI Nancy, yes I do use Decorative balls as decoration. I have a lens showing some too at Easy Holiday Decorating which I am lensrolling your beautiful lens to:) I actually started doing this when my children were little and I redecorated with all unbreakable items...so plastic, wood, metal, wicker etc, no glass. Love this lens!

    • DecoratingEvents profile image

      DecoratingEvents 7 years ago

      I learned something, thank you!

    • profile image

      poutine 7 years ago

      Thanks for introducing me to Decorative Balls.I never heard of them before. Some of them are really pretty.

    • Dianne Loomos profile image

      Dianne Loomos 7 years ago

      When I first read your title I thought it would be about Christmas balls but these are very different. I especially like the Artisan Bowl and Balls. Beautiful!

    • profile image

      Joan4 7 years ago

      Beautiful decorative balls!