How to Make a Ribbon Balloon!
November 13, 2012 by Heather
Last month I visited a restaurant that had light shades that looked like giant spheres made of strings of white yarn. A friend that was with me said that she had seen tutorials online of how to make them with a balloon and some glue.
I thought that was a neat idea, and as I began thinking about ways to decorate for parties (we have a birthday coming in our family), I thought it would be fun to do something similar, but with colour. Then I thought it would be fun to try with ribbon. I wasn’t sure if it would work, but I thought you’d be interested to see what happened, so I took pictures!
Want to join me on my experimental journey to find out if my “ribbon balloon” idea
could become a reality ?
If you’re giving this a try, you’ll need the following:
- white glue
- inflated balloon
- helper (you can see her arm in the photo )
I started by pouring some glue into a bowl, and adding a little bit of water to it. I can’t give you a measurements, because I just aimed for runny, but not totally watery.
Then I started at the end of my spool of ribbon and dipped it in the glue:
After dipping in glue, lay it on your balloon, and continue wrapping your balloon with the glue-y ribbon. This is where a little helper comes in handy. My 3 year old held the balloon for me while I worked (until she got tired of it)
It’s pretty messy & your hands will get very glue-y in the process, so be prepared for that! (I put a piece of cardboard on the table, to catch drips and for easy clean up.) For my balloon, I wanted to use more than one color of ribbon, so I got my little helper to trim the ribbon when needed, since my hands were a mess!
Before hanging the balloon to dry, I added some extra glue. I just got it in my hands & smoothed it over the balloon & ribbon. Do this carefully, or you’ll be rearranging all of your ribbons! I wanted to make sure it was really glue-y, incase I hadn’t put enough on in the first place. I wasn’t sure if it would work with ribbon as well as it does with yarn, since the ribbon wouldn’t be able to soak up the glue.
I’m thinking it may have been better to skip that step because of what happened with the glue that was inbetween ribbons, on the balloon. You’ll see what I mean soon.
Let the balloon dry overnight. In the morning, this is what I found:
Hopeful, I popped the balloon, to see what would happen.
I was hoping for a collapsed balloon and a lovely, stiff “ribbon balloon” in its place.
Instead, this happened:
Aaaaand I was pretty sure I was going to have to come up with another post idea for you for today
Feeling bummed, I pulled the balloon away from the ribbon, and “puffed up” the sad, deflated “ribbon balloon”. To my surprise, it took shape again! But, it had a lot of glue in between ribbons that I didn’t think looked very pretty. (That’s why I’m thinking I could’ve skipped the extra glue step the night before)
So, I looked at that sad ribbon balloon & for a few seconds, I tried to convince myself that it was cute. But I knew it wasn’t So, I sat down on the couch with my daughter (who was watching a movie) and while watching, I started picking/peeling those bits of glue off. They came off quite easily but there were a lot of them. So, it took a while, but it wasn’t hard work or anything, and it was over pretty quick since I was busy watching a movie at the same time
In this photo, you can still see a few bits of glue. You can decide how picky you want to be (pun intended) about those bits, and stop there, or keep going to make it “perfect”.
So, in the end, I am here to report that yes, you CAN create a ribbon balloon. It won’t be stiff (as I imagined it would be), but it will hold its shape. It might deflate and shrivel up after popping your balloon in the morning, but all is NOT lost! It actually turned out to look pretty good, and I think that if you had a lot of time to spend making them, you could totally make some cute decorations out of these!
So, what do you think?
Did it end up looking cute or am I just kidding myself?
Would you make these?
P.S. Come visit me & check out some other party ideas over at my blog, Raising Memories!