This DIY tutorial is adapted from a fabulous post from Priscilla Locke. You can read her full tutorial here!
I’m a true millennial and have been obsessed with balloon arches for a couple years but never realized how easy they were to make until last October. We were throwing our 2nd (of hopefully many!) annual Halloween party and I was determined to create one even if I looked like the Bride of Frankenstein afterwards. Luckily, it was so much simpler than I thought and since then I’ve made two more balloon arches. We’re now at the point where creating a balloon arch takes us no longer than 30-40 minutes from start to finish.
I’m a big fan of using black and white and a little green in my Halloween decorations and when it came time to create the balloon arch I wanted to do a simple black and white balloon arch. The resulting arch was wicked awesome!
What you’ll need:
Electric Balloon Pump - I cannot recommend this enough. For under $20 it will allow you to blow up around 50 balloons in under 10 minutes!
Clear Fishing Line - You can pick this up at any hardware store. If you buy one package it should last you a lifetime in the balloon arch department!
Balloon Tying Tool - I’m pretty sure I can’t tie a balloon without one now. It’s a total lifesaver when you’re trying to tie a lot of balloons at once. You can find these at your local party supply store for a couple bucks a piece.
Plastic Needles - I purchased a pack of 40 on Amazon, but you can also find packs of 2 plastic needles at your local craft store.
Balloons - This is the fun part! Depending on what look you’re going for you can play around with a lot of colors or only a few. Each arch will look totally unique based off what color scheme you choose. When you are choosing balloons be sure to get a mix of a couple different sizes. For our Halloween balloon arch I used a mixture of 12” and 5” balloons.
Screw Hooks - I picked these up at our local hardware store for about 70 cents a hook. We ended up using 2 of them to create our arches but you might need more depending on the size and shape of your balloon arch.
1. Blow up and tie your balloons. This should be a cinch with your electric balloon pump and balloon tying tool! The length you want your balloon arch will dictate how many balloons you should blow up. The balloon arch looks more visually interesting when the balloons are different sizes so you may want to blow up some balloons a lot so they are very large and blow other balloons so they’re full but not very big. One thing I noticed in balloon arches where I used metallic balloons was that those must be filled up to capacity. If you don’t fill them up all the way they will very quickly start to deflate so make sure those are as full as they can be!
2. Cut your fishing line. The length you choose will be determined by the length you want your balloon arch. If you’re not sure how much you need it’s always better to do a longer piece and then cut off more later if you don’t need it all.
3. Start stringing your balloons onto your fishing line using your plastic needle. I would highly recommend using two people so that your balloons don’t get tangled up. Tape one end of your fishing line to a table or back of a chair and then have one person use the plastic needle to poke through the rubber end of the balloon, securing it onto the fishing line. The second person can then grab the balloon and gently run it down to the end of the fishing line. Be careful to not go too quickly or fishing line can get tangled and knotted.
Note: I found that it was a little hard to get the balloon through the rubber end of the balloon so I cut the tip of my needle so that it was more sharp.
4. With your fishing line now full of balloons you can start to hang it up. I found that my balloons stayed on the line without having to tie any knots in the line but if for some reason your balloons are moving around you can tie a knot at both ends.
5. Screw your screw hooks into the wall to hold up your balloon arch. You shouldn’t need any tools to do this, you can manually screw the hooks in with your hand. For our Halloween balloon arch we used 2 hooks, one at the top left and top right of our ceiling beams. For our Winter Wonderland balloon arch we ended up using 2, one at the top right of our ceiling beam and then one on the wall left to our ceiling beam so that it had more movement. Play around with your screw placement to give different vibes to your balloon arch!
6. Cut a couple smaller pieces of fishing line (about 10-12 inches long). Because our balloon arch was so high up one of us stood up on the ladder while the other person lifted the balloon fishing line up to them. Wrap one of the smaller pieces of fishing line around your balloon fishing line. With it wrapped tie a double knot into your smaller line. You are creating a loop with the smaller piece of fishing line that will hang on the hook and hold up your balloon line. With your loop created you should be able to hang it onto the screw hook and it will hold up the balloon line. Move to the next screw hook and position your balloon fishing line so it’s in place where you’d like it. Wrap your second piece of fishing line around the balloon fishing line and then tie a knot, creating another loop. Hang this second loop around the second screw hook so the balloon arch is now in place. Because the balloons are so light we haven’t had any problem with the balloons falling down, just make sure your knot is secure! The end of your balloon arch will just hang down, it doesn’t need to be secured to the wall.
And you’re done! Once you make your first balloon arch you’ll find it’s so easy you’ll want to make one for every occasion! We have made three now and since we do them so often we leave our screw hooks year-round so that they’re always there when we want to create a new one. If you're planning to do a balloon arch for a party we have found that our balloon arch stays looking nice for about 7-12 days (a lot of this has to do with the temperature of the house and how quickly the balloons deflate). You should be able to do a balloon arch a couple days before your event and it will still look great for guests!
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