Currently, stones can be purchased in sets that come in black, white, red, or blue. However, with a couple cans of spray paint and a little creativity, the sky’s the limit as far as what you can do with the appearance of your stones.
It all began in 2013, when Sean Smiley, an Irish-American, painted shamrocks on the side of his balls. They weren’t pretty, but this primitive paint job started a bit of a trend, and later paint jobs became much more technical and of increasingly better quality. In 2014, while headed to Toronto, Ontario, for the yearly Canada Open, Ryan Kinka felt so obliged as to spray paint his stones like the American flag. With one set of four painted with the red and white stripes and the other set blue with white stars, his team was prepared to represent the US while north of the border. The next year, when Philadelphians and co-founders of Stones, Chris Kinka and John Janick headed to New York to face off against the other founders of the game, they entered as the enemy, and only stones painted as Death Stars would do. Now, Stones veteran, Tommy “Iceman” Pendergast, has his set painted like the helmet of his Top Gun namesake and others are experimenting with skulls, and playing dice.
It’s relatively easy to do. Once a set of stones is weathered from a season or so of use, lightly sand them down and fill all large nicks with bumper repair. Then, choose your colors of spray paint. (We have found that Rust-Oleum Ultra Cover Paint and Primer works the best.) After selecting the base coat color, spray the stones with three coats, allowing adequate drying time between coats. Next, tape off the stones in whatever design you choose and spray them with three coats of your second color choice. Repeat this step for however many colors you choose. Once satisfied with the appearance of your stones, remove tape and apply 4-5 coats of high gloss Rust-Oleum clear coat to complete the project.
As Stones spreads throughout Philadelphia, we are excited to see what ball tagging ideas surface. We envision designs that represent different neighborhoods, different streets, city landmarks, Philly Sports teams… who knows? The stones are in your court. Legal graffiti. Spray away.