To go with my nephew’s Ninjago theme, we gave out these balloon swords at the end of the party. These are simple one-balloon swords, very easy to make, but lots of fun to play with. I made a couple dozen or so, with several extras in case they popped. Leave about an inch of the balloon uninflated when blowing up the balloon. I brought a pop-up laundry basket to hold all the swords.
This post begins a short series on balloon weapons.
This icosahedron balloon is one of my favorites to make. Kids love playing with this balloon and tossing it around. I’ve posted a smaller version of this balloon before, but this is the large version (more than a foot in diameter.) It is made from six 260 balloons with a large round in the middle. (I like to use a polka-dotted balloon.) Each 260 balloon is used to create one basic unit, and after twisting six of them, you connect the six units with the balloon ends to form the icosahedron (20 faces.)
Check out this paper from Vi Hart, which contains instructions and pictures for making this balloon.
I’ve been making many different foods recently. Here are healthier ones. 🙂
The pear balloon is pretty easy – I used a small green 5″ round and pushed some air towards the knot to get the pear shape. The leaves are made with two loop twists with a 160 green scrap, and the stem is a brown balloon scrap with just a little air in it to fill it without expanding the balloon. (At first I expanded the brown balloon, but I thought the proportions look better if you don’t – up to you.)
The grapes balloon is made with a purple 260 and green 160 scrap for the stem and leaves. There are many ways to twist the grapes. I twisted a cluster of 4 one-inch bubbles, then a cluster of 5 one-inch balloons, and twisted those two together. Afterwards, twist a cluster of 3 one-inch bubbles to form the bottom of the grapes, and then twist 2 or 3 more 1-inch bubbles and secure it with the intersection of the first two clusters. It may be a little hard to understand my from my description, but just give it a try and maybe you’ll come up with a new design. 🙂
If you like fruit, check out the strawberries I made before.
I first saw this balloon on youtube (see below), and thought it would be a fun balloon to make, especially for older kids. I hadn’t thought about making emojis before. I added one pinch twist on each side.
My husband didn’t know what this was, but my niece did!
Here’s my try at a simple one balloon bird. The bird design by Twistina is super cute, but I wanted a simpler bird.
The large bird to the right in the picture above is made with a single 260 balloon. You won’t need the entire balloon, and I wrapped a portion of the uninflated balloon around the body to hide it, before finishing off the balloon with the tail.
The two birds on the left are made with 160 balloons. As shown, you can easily add a different color for the beak and/or feet, if you are not in a rush. Using just a yellow/orange bubble for the beak will add a lot.
I really like this panda bear design. It’s another fun and fast one, and you can use this design for other animals too. I followed this tutorial from jlomagic of Lacey, WA. You can even buy white round balloons with the face already printed to save you more time.
To make this balloon, you’ll need a round white and a black 160 or 260. The one thing I do differently is I twist the tail out of the round white balloon (because a panda’s tail is actually white.) If you use the plain white rounds, you’ll need a black marker to draw the face. For the black balloon, I happened to have some Qualatex Pearl Onyx Black 160s, which I like better than the regular Onyx Black.
I gave a couple of these balloons to a two and a three year old. The balloons survived quite a bit of squeezing and pulling!
BTW, La’s Rocks is a popular balloon shop – I’ve heard great things about them. They offer free shipping if you order more than $150. They have a lot of variety – I may order from them next time.
This one-balloon dinosaur (T-Rex) by Rob Driscoll is another fun and fast balloon. You’ll need a black marker to give the dinosaur sharp, scary teeth and eyes.
Check out Rob’s blog – he’s quite a talented balloon artist and photographer, and has been doing a creative series of “Twisted Cinema” balloon posts.
[ Rob Driscoll’s free tutorials ]
This two-balloon horse is a fun and fast one! You can use different colors instead of the usual black/brown/white; “My Little Pony” fans will love them. It can also stand on its own.
Recently, I’ve been looking for more balloon designs that can be made quickly. I twisted for a classroom of kids last week, and whenever you have a large group of kids (and limited time), you’ll usually need to stick to designs that only require one or two balloons. My next few posts will be on simple balloons.
To make this balloon, I followed this tutorial video by Michael Floyd. If all you can make is the basic balloon dog, this one is not much harder. You’ll just need to learn how to make pinch twists, which you’ll see in the video. I like Michael’s explanation of how to make the poodle tail. It may take a little time to figure out the poodle tail, but if you can’t get it, you can just slowly push the air to the other side of the balloon.
To decorate one of the walls at a baby shower, I made three of the these flowers, one red (as shown), along with one pink flower and one white flower. The flower is almost a foot wide after being put together.
To make this balloon: the flower is made of five 6″ heart balloons for the petals, and a yellow balloon for the middle part. I used a part of a yellow 350 balloon (with two pinch twists), but you could also just use a small round yellow balloon (twisted in half). Inflate and tie three of the heart balloons together, and the other two heart balloons together, and then twist the two sets to connect them. Then slide the yellow balloon into place. The balloon will look the same on both sides. I tied a short piece of ribbon to the balloon and taped the other end to the wall.
I will try to put a video together about how to make this balloon. It’s pretty simple!
I came across this pretzel balloon while reviewing some of the fun and super cool creations by Sage the Balloon Sage. It’s an easy balloon to twist and only requires one balloon. Add “salt” with a white paint marker. I always get a kick out of serving balloon foods to guests. 🙂
[ Balloon Sage’s pretzel balloon design video ]