The witch ball originated among cultures where harmful magic and those who practiced it were feared.
They are one of many folk practices involving objects for protecting the household.
They may be hung in an eastern window, placed on top of a vase or suspended by a cord (as from the mantelpiece or rafters).
Witch balls appeared in America in the 19th century and more opaque variations are often found in gardens under the name gazing ball.
However, gazing balls contain no strands within their interior. Glass studios traditionally make a witch ball as the first object to be created in a new studio.
According to folk tales, witch balls would entice evil spirits with their bright colours;
the strands inside the ball would then capture the spirit and prevent it from escaping.
These are nicely made in China