How To Decorate With Balloons

Balloons are fun for kids of all ages. These versatile and fun decorations add color, decoration, and personality to any event. With some time and creativity, the sky is the limit. Since balloons come in all sizes and shapes, balloon artistry is the perfect way to elevate your next celebration. From birthdays to bar mitzvahs, balloon decorations are attention grabbers at any event. According to The Spruce Crafts, most balloon decorations require an assortment of balloons, a balloon hand pump, wire and fishing line, a low-temperature glue gun, and Command hooks or a pegboard to hold up the design.

Before shopping for your balloon decorations, select a color theme for your event. Purple decor might include pink, lavender, or coated colors to add visual interest. Consider mixing tones with gold or silver balloons and embellishments. Let's talk a little about balloon safety. Most decorations use latex balloons, which are known to pop. If you use Mylar balloons, dispose of them properly and don't release them into the sky. These balloons can cause havoc with power lines (via CBS News). We recommend using fully biodegradable Qualatex balloons. They are available in sizes from five inches to eight feet when inflated, and there is an entire rainbow of colors and metallics. Now, let's get decorating with balloons!

Welcome your guests with golden arches

A bright and bold balloon arch creates an eye-catching entrance for any event. Fully customizable with a combination of sizes, colors, and styles of balloons, arches are the perfect backdrop for your guests' photos. To start, choose two colors for the arch theme and carry that theme through your entire event. Next, sketch your arch and plan its size, proportions, and colors before blowing up the balloons. While inflating them, vary the size from small to large. Then, thread the balloon necks and hang them on the arch with hooks or a pegboard. ProFlowers recommends using a monofilament fishing line for your arch frame.

If you want to craft a freestanding balloon arch, use heavy wire to anchor it into large buckets of sand or gravel (via WikiHow). Then blow up balloons, tie two together, and twist those two onto another pair to create a set of four. You can make little clover and flower shapes. For a modern look, go for a monochromatic palette and balloons between 5 and 12 inches in size (via Darling Celebrations). Or grab an arch kit like this one from Glow Universe to keep things simple. While balloon arches are not difficult to construct, they usually need a few hundred balloons.

Grow some balloon fruits and vegetables

Create a garden of delights at your next celebration with fruit and flower-themed balloons. For flowers, instead of making the four-petal flower typically used in arches, make five-petal flowers by wrapping the balloon necks around each other. According to Balloon Art Online, you can attach them with stretchy rubber bands or long balloons called modeling balloons. Add a contrasting balloon at the center, then attach the flowers to green garden stakes like these from Lowe's, and cut them into different lengths. You can also inflate long balloons, fold them over, and twist them repeatedly to form a 3D flower (via Wonderful DIY).

Making fruit balloons requires careful planning, plus tape and paper for leaves. Small and round orange balloons become oranges by attaching a few green leaves. You can transform small golden, deep red, or purple balloons into bunches of grapes, gooseberries, blueberries, or blackberries with some tape and leaves. Use long, yellow balloons for bananas and attach them to floral wire to create garlands (via Oh Happy Day).

Light up the night

Adding simple glow sticks or LED lights to your balloons before inflating them creates unexpected elegance. According to Balloon Decoration Guide, LED lights usually last up to 15 hours. Your guests will be delighted with pastel, pearly, and white glowing balloons floating on the ceiling. Before inflating balloons with air or helium, insert your lighting element of choice. Inexpensive glow sticks and specially-designed battery-operated LEDs, like these from Amazon, create an eye-catching display. For a unique look, crack glow-in-the-dark bracelets and put them in a transparent or opaque balloon. Then partially inflate the balloon before putting another glow stick inside and filling it to your desired size (via Say Yes).

Illuminated balloons filled with air look fantastic floating in your pool, spa, pond, or water feature. You can even put a few in your bathtub to give it a festive touch. Fill your room and float them on the ceiling for subdued, ambient lighting. Or you can add some twinkle with clear balloons pre-fitted with LED lights. These are available at most big box and craft stores.

Create a showstopping balloon wall

Great for taking memorable selfies and group photos, a balloon wall backdrop will make a statement at your next event. Just keep in mind that building a balloon wall takes a few hours and requires blowing up a few hundred balloons. According to My Amusing Adventures, you will need a glue gun or masking tape, a balloon pump, and an assortment of balloons for construction. Their 7 foot high by 6 ½ foot wide wall required 241 12-inch balloons. While you can build a balloon wall of any size, the wall should be tall and wide enough to fit guests. They suggest purchasing more balloons than you think you'll use. You can always return unopened packages after your wall is complete.

Instead of attaching the balloons directly to the wall, many designers suggest using portable backdrops or screens. You can also attach the balloons to columns (via House Beautiful). To build your balloon wall, start by inflating all balloons to varying fullness levels. Once you've tied the balloons, attach two balloons. Repeat this process until most of the balloons are in pairs. Use tape or a glue gun to attach each balloon pair to the base, mixing sizes and colors. Then fill in empty spots with small balloons. Add depth with balloon garlands, which you can craft by threading and wrapping balloon pairs on the fishing line and adding another duo. Complete the look with accents like foil balloons, flowers, and bows.

Give balloons the glamour treatment

Glitter isn't just for tabletop decorations and holiday ornaments. Glitter might just be the best way to transform the average balloon into an oh-so sparkly orb. Before starting with any glitter-related craft, remember how much glitter loves everything and everyone. Placing an old shower curtain or tablecloth underneath the project area makes clean-up easier. Once you've got your glitter and clear balloons, grab some accent balloons in the same color as the glitter. Making glitter-filled balloons requires a secret ingredient called Hi-Float. This balloon treatment, available at Oriental Trading, will not only make helium-filled balloons float for hours and hours, but it's also great for getting the glitter to stick to the balloon's interior.

According to Twigs & Twirls, putting any item in a balloon will weigh it down. To keep things light, use confetti made from thin paper or tissue paper. Using high-quality helium will help your balloons stay afloat. To add glitz to the outside of the balloon, use Mod Podge or decoupage glue to attach the glitter (via Studio DIY). Using a foam brush, apply a thin coat of glue, then roll your inflated balloon in the glitter. Shake off any excess sparkle and let the balloon dry.

Elevate your party decorations

Clusters of bright balloons are an instant way to take your party to the next level. Balloons floating around the table make great photo holders and place cards. According to A Joyful Riot, you can create a cute place card by attaching an inflated balloon to a lollipop stick and sticking it in a cupcake, caramel apple, or muffin as a base.

Use your helium-filled balloons to hold items like prints, prizes, and even game pieces in a dedicated area. A row of balloons displaying photographs makes a fantastic display. Gluing some inexpensive faux flowers to the bottom of the balloons dresses them up for garden and tea parties (via Pretty My Party). For bridal parties or showers, loosely wrap the helium-filled balloons in tulle and add flowers. A balloon chandelier takes balloons to another level (Balloon Party). Create one by collecting pictures and using a hole punch to put holes in the top center of the photos. Then attach long strands of curling ribbon to hang from the helium-filled balloons. 

Blow minds with a balloon tree

While decorating a tree is typically associated with the holiday season, a balloon tree is in style year-round. Although creating a balloon tree might look complicated, it just takes a little creativity. According to Creative Heart Studio, the first trick is to use a floor lamp as the tree trunk. Remove light bulbs and the cord from the lamp before beginning. Basic trees require around 41 11-inch balloons, 110 5-inch balloons for the main section, and a few twisting balloons for the garland. And don't forget a star balloon for the top!

To start, inflate the five 11-inch balloons for the bottom section of the tree. Then attach two balloons together and twist them around the bottom of the lamp. Inflate the next five balloons with less air so they're a little smaller, and attach them above the base layer. The next five balloons should be even smaller and wrapped above the previous layer to complete the lower part of the tree. Take a break, and then start inflating the rest of your balloons. Use the 11-inch balloons for the middle part of the tree and the five-inch balloons on the narrow top. For the last step, create your garland by inflating long balloons and twisting them into bead-like shapes. Glue or tape them to the tree to complete the look.

Whip up a welcoming wreath

Armed with a foam wreath and a few balloons, you can easily make the balloon wreath of your dreams. The best part is you don't even need to inflate the balloons if you prefer not to. According to Mom Dot, you'll need straight pins, pipe cleaners, scissors, and 120 assorted balloons to create a 9-inch foam wreath form. They suggest folding the balloons at the neck before attaching them with straight pins. Move around the wreath and fill in any empty areas with balloons until the wreath is fully covered.

Another unique idea is to create your wreath with a hula hoop base. Start by spray painting the hula hoop and letting it try before adorning it with balloons (via Bespoke Bride). They suggest inflating the balloons to different sizes and tying them in pairs. Attach the balloons by the ends (or with string or fishing line) and attach them in clumps on the hula hoop. Add more colors and move them until it looks appealing. Embellish with ribbons or real or fake flowers for the finishing touch.

Enjoy some frozen treats

Contrary to popular belief, balloons don't always need air or helium. For a kid-friendly craft, fill them with water and food coloring. According to Taste of Home, filling balloons with water and food dye and placing them in the freezer transforms them into cheerful decorations for your outdoor space. It's best to set up this craft in an area that can handle a colorful mess. Then start adding a few drops of food dye inside the balloon and fill them slowly with water. Freeze until solid, then cut the balloon and peel it off the colored ice. For large marbles, use 11-inch balloons and follow the same procedure. These marbles will look great lining a driveway, fence, or another outdoor area at your event.

If you love ice cream, consider transforming your pastel, helium-filled balloons into ice cream cones by adding brown craft paper cones. Start by tracing around a plate then cutting out the circle (via HGTV). Like a slice of pie, remove a wedge that covers about 20% of the shape. Add crosshatching with the brown pen to mimic the look of the cone. Inflate, tie off, and attach ribbon or curling ribbon. Then secure the "cone" to the "ice cream" with double-sided tape.

Adorn your balloons with imagination

These days, balloons are not just for decoration. They also make the perfect canvas for your creativity. According to Design Improvised, pom-pom tails give balloons bright, three-dimensional color and sparkle. To recreate this cute look, use 18-inch clear balloons since they can hold the weight of pom-poms better. Keep spacing consistent when attaching the glitter pom-poms with a low-temperature glue gun.

Marbled balloons are another way to transform a balloon from drab to fab. To complete this project, use helium-filled balloons since the nail polish coloring is heavy (via Hallmark Channel). Once the balloon is full, sealed, and tied to a string, put some water in a shallow container and drip in nail polish. Without moving the balloon too much, gently submerge and remove it, and then let it dry. You can also create and apply custom-made stickers with special inkjet printer paper. Go ahead and have fun with various fonts and sticker designs. Just make sure your sticker fits on the inflated balloon (via Bargain Balloons).

Transform balloons into animals

Did you wonder when we were getting to balloon animals? Imagine how impressed your friends and colleagues will be when they see your balloon dog. According to The Spruce Crafts, one of the best ways to entertain guests at your party is by wowing them with your balloon animal creations. To start, inflate a long balloon and make the dog's nose by twisting it about 2 inches from the end. While it might take some trial and error, the result will be worth it.

An easier option might be to add colorful paper cutouts to your balloons. Pink balloons become pigs, yellow balloons change to puppies, and white balloons can be ducks. There are plenty of DIY sites that offer family-friendly templates. If you want a challenge, try to recreate the 3-foot balloon dog from Happy Cabbie (via YouTube). He uses balloon links specially designed for balloon sculptures. Start by inflating 16 balloon links and tying them together in a long row. Skipping one balloon, twist together four balloons and secure, then repeat two more times. Two groups of four will become the legs, and one group will be the head. Using three long balloons, squeeze and twist them into small flower shapes for the nose and tail. Attach two small white balloons for the eyes, and you've got yourself man's best friend.

Take balloon decor outdoors

If you are making outdoor balloon decorations, there are some special requirements to keep in mind. Sunshine and wind are not gentle on balloons. According to The Very Best Balloon Blog, the sun can cause balloons to expand and pop, especially dark colors that soak up more heat. To avoid excessive popping, inflate balloons to full size and let out about 25% of the air to stretch them out. Helium- or air-filled latex balloons will start breaking down in the sunlight. 

Another tip is to create balloon arrangements for protected areas under patios, gazebos, and porches. You can put tarps or other protection on the grass or greenery to prevent balloons from popping. If you live in a climate with high humidity, latex balloons can fuse together. Take special care when decorating with these (via Balloon Coach). Additionally, securely attach helium balloons to outdoor structures, tree branches, or patio posts with binder clips. Use lit latex balloons for evening and night events. You can place them along walkways, driveways, or the garden by attaching them to golf tees and placing them in rows or clusters.

Go for the garland

Whether you hang them from chandeliers or line walkways, balloon garlands will make an impact. According to Two Twenty One, a balloon garland is an easy project. You can find balloon garland kits in coordinating sizes and colors online. They advise blowing up a few balloons of each color and putting them into balloon tape in groups of 15 to 18, then repeating.

Another tip to keep in mind is the power of balloon garland tape (via Better Homes & Gardens). This light-colored tape has holes, making it a snap to attach the balloons. Start by inflating all the balloons, keeping an eye on the assorted colors, and inserting them onto the balloon tape. Using tape is simpler than attaching balloons with twine (via Paisley & Sparrow). Use an assortment of balloon sizes to create more of an impact on your garland. No matter how you're constructing your arrangement, do not cut the tape until you have the proper size. Then attach the garland to hooks, columns, or even small nails to hold it in place for your event.

Add some balloons to your tablescape

Skip the flowers and use balloons to create a one-of-a-kind table centerpiece for your next event. According to Party City, it's easy to create a centerpiece by stacking balloon layers. The tabletop decor is the perfect place to use metallic, pearlescent, or patterned balloons to make a statement. They suggest filling a water balloon with water to use as the base. Then fill five polka dot balloons with air and attach them with a fishing line around the base. Finish by adding a layer of millennial pink balloons and a foil balloon in the center.

Another idea is to make a balloon bouquet. This arrangement only requires a handful of balloons, helium, ribbon, scissors, and an object — like a stuffed animal, toy, or flower arrangement — for the center (via Balloons Tomorrow). Inflate, seal, and tie ribbons to the balloons and group them in clusters of varying heights. Accents like tassels, foil balloons, ribbons, candy, and flowers fill in imperfections and empty spots. Your guests will love the attention to detail.