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15 Genius Ways to Repurpose Old Bowling Balls – Get Creative!

  • Reading time:7 mins read

If you’ve ever stepped foot in a bowling alley, you know those vibrant, hefty balls rolling down the lanes are more than just spheres used for knocking down pins. Bowling balls have a unique shape, weight, and variety of eye-catching colors that make them prime candidates for repurposing and upcycling projects.

Instead of letting old, retired bowling balls collect dust or end up in a landfill, get creative and give them new life! There are so many fun and practical ways to reuse these rounded relics for decorative pieces, games, home goods, and much more.

From garden art to kid’s play areas to functional household items, this guide will explore 15 innovative ideas for what to do with old bowling balls. Get ready to tap into your crafty side and reimagine these spheres in ways you never thought possible! Let’s roll into repurposing bowling ball projects.

Garden Decor and Planters

Your garden or outdoor living space is the perfect canvas for displaying repurposed bowling ball creations. The weight and durability of these balls make them ideal for withstanding the elements.

One simple yet stylish option is using bowling balls as unique planters for flowers, small plants, or even mini succulents. Drill a hole in the top for drainage, add some potting soil, and you have an eye-catching planter that’s sure to be a conversation starter among guests.

You can also leave bowling balls unplanted and use them as fun gazing balls or decorative spheres scattered around gardens, walkways, or yards. Group several together in varying colors and patterns for an artistic arrangement.

Get extra creative by building bowling ball sculptures or yard art displays. Stack and arrange them in abstract formations, paint or decorate them, and let your imagination run wild!

Lawn Games and Sports Equipment

Those who love outdoor games and activities can put old bowling balls to clever use as fun lawn games and sports equipment right in their own backyard.

With just a few bowling balls, you can easily make your own portable bowling ball bocce set or petanque balls for casual games on the grass. Or use them to build a quirky putting green or mini golf obstacle course for the whole family to enjoy.

The weight of bowling balls also makes them perfect for exercise routines like ball slams – a great strength training workout to burn calories while repurposing your old bowling gear.

Furniture and Home Decor

Why settle for plain, store-bought furniture and home accents when you can craft one-of-a-kind pieces using recycled bowling balls? With a bit of creativity, these spheres become funky statement pieces.

One popular project is turning bowling balls into unique ottomans or stools. Simply add a flat, cushioned top and you have an artsy seat that doubles as a conversation piece. Get extra crafty by painting patterns, textures or decoupaging photos onto the ball base.

For a quirky take on vases and bookends, turn to bowling balls by hollowing out their interiors and arranging them on shelves. You can even add some pizzazz by drilling holes to turn them into bowling ball lamps or pendant lights to hang over tables.

Kids’ Play Areas

Old bowling balls provide ample opportunity for creating engaging, one-of-a-kind decor and toys for kids’ play areas, whether indoors or out.

In a playroom, use old balls as unique shelving units or toy storage containers by carving out portions. Or make them into whimsical rocking “horses” or ride-on creations that toddlers are sure to love.

For outdoor play areas, you can get really creative by building themed sculptures and structures using multiple bowling balls. A dinosaur, rainbow snake, or abstract climbing formation – the possibilities are endless!

Useful Household Items

Don’t underestimate the humble bowling ball’s ability to serve practical purposes around the house and yard as well. Their solid heft comes in handy for a number of quirky yet functional uses.

For example, you can easily repurpose them as doorstops to prop open entrances without any annoying sliding or shifting. Similarly, their weight makes bowling balls perfect for marking off parking spaces or securing light-weight items like tarps and tents.

During the holidays, tricked-out bowling balls can add festive flair by using them as unique Christmas tree bases or oversized ornaments for your lawn. Get crafty with paint, glitter, ribbons and more!

Creative Art Projects

Artists and crafters of all skill levels will find bowling balls to be an inspiring medium for mixed media art pieces both functional and purely decorative.

The smooth, glossy surfaces of bowling balls act as the perfect canvas for painting intricate designs, patterns, or even photos using acrylic paints or decoupaging techniques. Display them around the home or yard as modern art installations.

For a more textured, abstract look, you can create mosaic art using shards and pieces from an old damaged bowling ball. Glue or grout the fragments onto surfaces like tables, wall hangings, or any other base.

If you’re handy with power tools and clay sculpting, you can even carve or sculpt intricate 3D shapes and figurines out of bowling balls themselves to display as unique art objects.

Unique Gifts and Selling Crafts

For those talented DIYers and makers, old bowling balls can be the source material for creating custom, one-of-a-kind items to give as personalized gifts or even sell at local craft fairs. and similar online markets are full of artisans making and selling bowling ball themed goods like ottomans, stools, vases, bookends, art objects, holiday decor and so much more. Tap into your creative spirit and join their ranks!

You can also put a personal spin on things by tailoring bowling ball crafts to make unique gifts for family and friends. A custom-painted bowling ball paperweight with an inside joke image or meaningful symbol makes for a quirky yet thoughtful present.

On a larger scale, try your hand at building showpiece furniture like bowling ball coffee tables or even rocking chairs for indoors or outdoors. With some power tools and finishing, these repurposed items are sure to strike a great impression.


From kitschy yard art to functional home goods, it’s clear that old bowling balls deserve a second spin at life through the art of creative repurposing. The options for reimagining their use are truly endless!

So before sending that old set to the dump after years of collecting dust, take a step back and let your imagination run wild. With the right DIY mindset and some elbow grease, you can transform these spherical relics into decorative statements, engaging activities, or remarkably useful household helpers.

Not only does upcycling give new life to old bowling balls, it also allows you to put your personal stamp on unique craft projects while cutting down on waste – talk about a delightfully striking spare! What’s your favorite idea for repurposing old bowling balls?