Weddings

Balloon Decorating for Weddings

This inexpensive but versatile design element can do wonders for your event's decoration

By Cynthia Myers

Wedding balloons
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Balloons are inexpensive, easy to work with and available in almost any color. They're eye-catching and immediately make people think of parties and celebrations. All these qualities make them an option for wedding decorations. With simple materials and a little know-how, you can create beautiful balloon decorations for a wedding.

  • What You Need to Know
  • Use balloons to create a festive atmosphere in the reception or dining areas.
  • Balloons can be used in a number of ways to enhance your design.
  • Balloons are a quick, easy way to hide unsavory design elements in your wedding space such as an ugly ceiling.
  • Make sure you have enough supplies on hand in case balloons burst or drift away such as ribbon, string and scissors.

Step 1:

Create a balloon arch to place at the entrance to the reception. Use large opalescent balloons in one or more of the wedding colors. Cut fishing line twice as long as your arch will be tall. For example, a seven-foot arch will need 14 feet of fishing line. Tie helium-filled balloons to the line with curling ribbon for a nice finishing touch. Attach the balloons far enough apart so that when you release the line each balloon is able to float straight up from the line, unimpeded by its neighbor. The sides of the balloon should just touch in the middle. When you anchor the ends of the line to the floor, the balloons will float up to make an arch.

Step 2:

Balloons are versatile and can be used in different ways to create interesting elements. For example, pour a cup of sand into a small uninflated balloon and tie it off with curling ribbon to create table centerpieces. Attach a silk flower or two for a small bouquet. This will serve as your base. Fill three balloons with helium and attach curling ribbons. Tie one end of each ribbon to the sand-filled balloon. The balloons should be at three different heights, the lowest just above the head of a seated diner. When your guests enter your reception, they'll be greeted by the sight of these colorful, gently swaying balloon centerpieces.

Step 3:

One classic, yet simple approach to decorating balloons involves filling the ceiling with inflated balloons. If you have a large room, concentrate on the area over the dance floor or over a buffet table. Fill the balloons with helium and let them drift up to the ceiling. This gives the effect of clouds floating overhead, and has the added benefit of covering up an unattractive ceiling.

Step 4:

Create freestanding balloon columns to flank entrances, buffet tables or the dance floor. First, build a base by attaching a length of plastic one-inch conduit the height of your column to a plywood base. Inflate two balloons and tie them together. Inflate two more balloons and tie them together. Twist the pairs of joined balloons together to form a cloverleaf shape. There should be a small space in the center of this cloverleaf shape, between the knotted ends of the paired balloons. Use your thumbs to stretch this space slightly until it's large enough to slip the balloon cluster onto the plastic conduit. Repeat this, rotating the balloon cloverleaf one-quarter turn each time so the balloons nest snugly together, until you reach the top of your column.

Step 5:

If you're having an outdoor wedding, you can signal the culmination of the wedding ceremony by releasing colored balloons into the air. Just make sure the event organizers and local community are notified and agree to your plan.

  • Tips & Warnings
  • Combine white balloons with two other colors for striking columns, arches and centerpieces.
  • Keep balloons away from direct, intense light or heat to prevent them from bursting unexpectedly. It's probably not a good idea to have balloons in the church to prevent any loud disruptions during the ceremony.
  • After the reception, let guests who have children take centerpieces or leftover balloons home.

About the Author

Cynthia James is a regular contributor to DexKnows.

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Select a florist

Start arranging arrangements. Once you determine the colors of your wedding, look at examples of floral centerpieces in magazines and on the Internet. Once you have something in mind, talk to florists to see if you see eye to eye.

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