Put 'DIY Hula Hoop Party' on your list

By Julia Dilworth, 24 hours Vancouver


There’s a small, yet dedicated DIY collective in my office and in our latest craft session, we set our sights on one of childhood’s most revered toys: the hula-hoop! (Maybe next time Xbox.)

Not only is this project simple but the materials are cheap, the skill level low and the payoff is exponential good times had by all.

Once you have everything set up, what ensues is basically a hula hoop-making party.

Putting the skeleton together takes about five minutes and then it’s decorating time. Before long, covering hoops with colourful tape rapidly gives way to rigorous trials of your creation.

Testing (the really fun part) is infectious amidst the research and development team, and a hoop around the waist quickly escalates to a hoop around the arm, around the neck — and inevitably — wearing everyone’s hula hoops at once ... all in the name of hula science, of course.

This isn’t just a project — it’s a playdate! And the spoils of which will make you the most popular party host or birthday-gifting aunt/uncle in town.


  • 3/4-inch polyethylene piping ($24 for 100 ft at Rona)
  • 3/4-inch coupling/ connectors (52 cents each)
  • plastic tube cutters (optional) $18
  • decorative electrical tape or duct tape ($1-$5)
  • rice or sand
  • hot water and bowl
  • measuring tape
  • measuring cup
  • funnel

Directions: DIY hula hoop

1. Measure 9.5 ft of 3/4-inch tube piping. (You can go a bit smaller with the size. We experimented and I encourage you to do the same!)

2. Cut piping with plastic tube cutters (recommended) and holding the two ends up, fill tube with desired filling. We used past-its-prime rice (also makes great noise!), about a cup per hoop, but this was a bit light in the end. Tip: Tape the ends together temporarily just to test the weight before going to the next step.This way you can fill it with more rice or sand if it's still too light.

3. Fill a bowl or bucket with boiled water and hold the tubing ends in it for about a minute — this will soften tube for the coupling/connector. Tip: At this point you'll have the tubing filled with rice or sand, so be careful not to tip it out when you're heating the tubing ends. 

4. Dry off the tubing and join its ends over either side of the coupling /connector until flush (stick in hot water for longer if not sliding on easily enough).

5. You now have a hula hoop frame!

6. Wrap tape around the connected tubing a few times to secure. Next, start wrapping electrical/duct tape around to decorate the entire hoop and you're done. Hula time!

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