Monday, May 23, 2011

Birthday Party Balloon Wreath: How To

If you follow me on Twitter then you know that a certain somebody's 1st birthday preparations are heavily underway. If you don't follow me on Twitter, you should. I'm not above shameless self-promotion. Plus, you can real-live chat with me and heck, you never know what's gonna come out of the mouth of babes AP.

Seriously though, if you follow me, you know that I've been incessantly tweeting about the infamous "birthday balloon wreath." Thanks to this Mama for the idea. And the pin-pricked fingers. And the six hours of my life that I can never get back that were spent pinning deflated balloons to a floral wreath. Kidding. I love Lindsey. You know, as much as you can love someone you've never met and only read about online. Totally creepy, indeed.
Here's a link to the "tutorial" I thought I would use. As is the case with almost everything that I do, I barely followed it. The only similarities between her wreath and mine? It's a wreath and it's full of balloons. So, go ahead and look at her pretty pictures, but then come back here and follow my tutorial. It's way better. I promise.

What You'll Need:
1. A Straw Floral Wreath (Various sizes, the one I chose was 18")
2. Ribbon (1 1/2" wide spool, I used 3 different patterns)
3. Craft Pins (Size 28, 2 100ct. boxes)

Here's what "craft pins" look like, if you're anything like me and have no idea what I'm talking about. Image via HobLob.

4. Balloons

Here's where I won't lie to you and tell you, "you'll only need 200 balloons for this project!" Like, ahem, some tutorial I know that did. How many balloons did I use? 600. Okay, that's a lie. I used 587 but 600 sounds much better.

I purchased 6 100ct. bags of Assorted Size Party Balloons and have only a handful of balloons left over. Lindsey brought up a good point, make sure you buy all of the balloons that you'll need (and then some) because god forbid you run out and have to drive 2 hours back to the nearest balloon store, only to find out that you purchased the last bag of said balloons and now must purchase a new, totally unmatching bag of balloons to finish this godforsaken wreath.

Here's What You'll Do:
1. Leave the plastic wrap on the straw wreath. This will cut down on the straw shedding and overall just make your life 10x easier.
2. Pin down your ribbon to the back of the wreath and begin wrapping it whatever way your little heart desires. The reason I wrapped the wreath in ribbon was so that it added a little pop of color in those rare spots where you could see beneath the balloons. You do not need to wrap the entire wreath.

3. Begin pinning your balloons. Like an uneducated balloon-pinner, I started folding the balloon in half and pinning them down 2 at a time. At this rate, I would have finished the wreath by the time Carter entered Kindergarten. Not efficient, to say the least. As I wisened up, I began folding and "stacking" the balloons on the pin, arranging them in a manner as to take up as much wreath-space as possible. Once I had 5 or 6 balloons stacked on the pin, I would then pin it to the wreath. This was MUCH easier although did allow for an increase in pricked finger-age.
Sidenote: I found it much easier to prop the wreath up and pin the balloons down that way, rather than laying the wreath flat. I'm a very visual person and this helped me see the "bigger picture," if you will.
Sidenote 2: You can be like me and carefully plan out the color "stacking." Because clearly you don't want to pin The Colors of Ireland (green, orange, white) or Mardi Gras Colors (yellow, orange, green, purple) repeatedly, although subconsciously, throughout the wreath.


 Don't forget to pin a piece of ribbon to the back of your wreath as a little hanging hook.
Keep pinning those balloons down and while you're at it, catch up on Real Housewives with a glass of Chardonnay nearby. At noon on a Monday. Eventually, your wreath will look like this:

If you're anything like me and bought scads of ribbon because you couldn't "just choose one or two colors" you can go back to Hobby Lobby and buy yet another straw wreath and pin down your ribbon creating a neat little fabric wreath to hang on the backyard gate.

Believe it or not, these wreaths aren't yet complete. I have a wooden "C" and number "1" that have been spray-painted in the garage that will eventually hang in the middle of each of these wreaths. I know, just call me "Crazy Crafty AP."

So, there you have it. Now, go gather your supplies, a glass of wine and pin balloons down until Next Tuesday. Happy Crafting, Loyals!

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  1. Love your wreaths! You should totally sell them on eBay (or to a blog reader)after the party because some mommas, like me, are just not DIYers.

    Can't wait to see the party all put together!

  2. Thanks for bringing back the pinning pain in my thumb. I think it has finally healed, and luckily that will be the only wreath like that I make. Funny, when I was checking out at Hobby Lobby the "veteran" lady was all, "Oh looks like you are making a balloon wreath! I haven't made one of those in years." Here I thought these things were such a novelty and I was ahead of the trend!

  3. Super cute idea!! Turned out great!

    And seriously....what patience!!

    I can't believe Lily and Carter are almost ONE...I'm in denial.

  4. What a cute idea! Of course, I'd never sit down and do it myself...I'm barely finding time to put Tommy's clothes in bins that he's outgrown! But you reminded me it's not too early to start planning for birthday #2 in September!

  5. very cute, but dang...that's a lot of balloons!

    just sent you a twitter follow request!

  6. 2 things:

    I just saw a different blog that had one of these cute wreaths at her son's birthday party and I wanted one! Thanks for posting the tutorial and the warning.

    I also sent you a follow request on Twitter!

  7. I'm in LOVE with this idea! SOoooo I'm planning my girls' birthday party too which will be in July. I need all the help I can get... wanna be my bday planning buddy?!

  8. Dude. I have to go take a nap just looking at that.

    Way to go, AP!

  9. This wreath is TOO cute. Awesome job! Carter is going to love it! :)

  10. I freakin love that! Never seen that before and such an awesome idea! So using that for my next bday party.

  11. What Shabby Princess said. I just love this & in theory would love to make it for my own guy's upcoming 1st birthday, but I haven't a DIY bone in my body.

  12. This is AWESOME - I will totally be making one of these for my girls 1st birthday. Thanks for sharing - I really need to get working on this!!!

  13. Well done! I think I'm going to have to do my own bunting/birthday banner...I'm sure that will give me a fun, bloody post to share, too!

  14. Love both wreaths! Cant wait to see what you come up with for C's party.

  15. Ohmygosh.... I m obsessed with that wreath. Not sure I have the patience to make one...and not sure how it would turn out. But damnit I want to try!

  16. I pinned this FOREVER ago & just finished it for my little guy's first birthday. OMG it takes A TON of patience and so many balloons, but I love it!


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