How To Make Balloon Columns
When it comes to balloon decorations, nothing will jazz up your kids party, prom, school social, or fundraiser like a balloon column. Balloon columns make wonderful visual impact, draw attention, and mark spaces. They are also extremely inexpensive to create. An air compressor, air mattress inflator, or hand held balloon inflator (plus many able hands) make the job of constructing a balloon column fun and easy.
Some people say balloon columns are difficult to make but I disagree. These balloon decorations are pretty simple to make and extremely impressive. They are much easier to put together than balloon arches. You can use them around a party room or to mark off a dance floor or stage area. All you need are a few supplies and some helpers!
The easiest base to make is a 1" length of PVC pipe inserted into a weight base. Take a lidded five-gallon bucket, cut a 1" circle in the lid, fill the bucket with gravel, then insert the PVC pipe down into the gravel. If the columns are for outside on the lawn, you can pound metal posts into the ground and then just slip the PVC over the pipes. (Be careful not to hit your sprinkler!)
Warning: Balloon columns will blow over in the wind, no matter how well you have them weighted down. Try to put balloon columns in a protected spot.
Filling in the Column
Inflate two balloons and tie together. Then inflate two more and tie those together. Now take your two pair of balloons and twist together to make a cluster of four. You can now wrap that around your frame, twisting the balloons on each other and the frame to secure into place. Repeat until the frame is covered and you're done! If you want to go the extra mile you can make sure all the balloons are exactly the same size by cutting a template out of cardboard and measuring each balloon against it. Personally, I think that's way too much work. The kids won't care! Part of the charm of something homemade is that it's not perfect.
Working With Air-Filled Balloons
The great thing about columns is that they work with air-filled balloons. That means not expensive and ill-behaved helium to mess with. Air-filled balloons also keep their shape longer so you can create your balloon decoration in advance and save your pre-party energy for something more important - like food!