Wednesday, February 22, 2012

How to make a Balloon Arch and Balloon Columns

A balloon arch is ideal for many occasions, at the entrance to a party, grand opening or other special event at a store front. Also above the cake table, background for photographs and even at walk/races for participants to go through the arch.

Balloon arches can be helium or air filled. To find out which type is best for you, you should answer the following questions:

  • How long should the decoration last?
  • Is the decoration for an indoor or outdoor event?
  • How many helpers do I have for building the arch?
  • How much time and money do I want to invest?

A helium filled arch, especially "String of Pearls", is the easiest and less time consuming solution. As the balloons float, you won't need any sturdy construction. The balloons are simply attached to a nylon or monofilament line. This also works for a multi-balloon arch made of balloon clusters of three to five balloons each.

A simple variation of a single line arch is the "Link-O-Loon" (or Linkaloon) arch. Link-o-loons have an elongated tail at the top of each balloon to tie one balloon to the next.

All you have to do is inflate the link-o-loons with helium and knot them together with these ends. You can get a wide variety of Link-O-Loon balloons and linkoloon arch kits here.

If you attach clusters of four 5" balloons in contrasting colors between each link-o-loon, you get the beautiful result as shown in the picture.

The downside of every helium filled decoration is their short life span of less than 24 hours and the cost of the helium.

In summary, helium filled arches are best for indoor events that last one day or an evening. Wedding balloon arches would be a good example for the use of helium filled designs.

If you need a decoration for more than one day or for an outdoor event, you’re better off with air filled decor.

An air filled arch needs two supportive elements:
  • a frame made of a strong, flexible material such as conduit, PVC pipe or aluminum rod
  • a sturdy base at either end to anchor the arch.

You also need to consider how to blow up the balloons. It would take a lot of breath to blow them up by mouth. A hand pump could be an alternative, but still takes time. The easiest solution would be an electrical balloon inflator. If you don't want to buy one, you could try to find one for renting.

Air filled arches take some time and effort to prepare. However, you can do this over several days in advance and you can re-use both the frame and the bases.

We’re here to help, so if you have any questions please email or call 615-613-3282. 

Make it a great day, Celebrate!

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