I too was busy this NYE, and like Matthew Lewis mentions in his blog 'Tips for a smooth New Year's Eve', I was able to start my preparations earlier in the week. Pre-inflating over 1000 - 5" balloons along with other small jobs that all take valuable time. Six hours of preparing sand weights, attaching fixing points to stars as well as many other little tasks! We were also able to start working on our NYE decor at the venue on the 30th of December which was such a bonus. Another six precious hours that we did not need to work on the day! Our job was in London, England; it was a repeat of the job that we did last year. Exactly the same decor, but in different colours so that made it very easy for us and a great opportunity to make some changes and improvements, making the job even quicker than last year!
Sue's Top Tips
1. Understand your customer’s needs and requirements. Space is a premium and most venues like to maximise their seating capacity to maximise their revenue, therefore they have limited space available for balloon decor. Design your decor to fit the available space. We love to work with Qualatex® Starpoint Microfoil® Balloons as we can create these elegant walls that fit neatly against the walls in the ballroom.
2. Check for magnet fixing points. Knowing your venue is very important, and I would always recommend a site visit. Finding fixing points for magnets is also very helpful. We used Click-Click™ ClickMagnets to keep our walls perfectly in position.
3. Allow time for repairs or changes. If you get the opportunity to start early, you still need to ensure that your decor looks perfect on the day. Occasionally a balloon will go down overnight, so ensure that you allow enough time to make any repairs or changes. In many cases, the event manager will want to walk around the venue with you once you have finished to confirm that they are happy with everything that you have done. It must look absolutely perfect!
4. Have good design plans to work from. You will probably have these from your proposals or quotes that you sent to your client to get the job. Remember to take these with you to ensure that everyone on your team knows exactly what you and they are doing, rather than trying to work from memory. It will make the construction process so much quicker!
5. Work out the logistics. Where will you be allowed to work V's where your decor is to be positioned? Fortunately for us, we were allocated a great, albeit very low-ceilinged, with a prep area next to the ballroom, which was perfect when we made the walls. However when it came to the 2 - 35ft arches, that was a whole different matter! Navigating several flights of stairs, corridors and doorways was challenging! We actually moved each arch in 2 sections and reconnected once we were near our final destination. We added the foil stars last to ensure that they were in the correct positions.
6. Make the job as easy as possible for yourself. Last year when we created these 'embellished arches' we randomly added the 9" and 20" star balloons. When we positioned the arch, I was not completely satisfied with how it looked and would have liked to make some changes. However, this was not possible for safety reasons as we had to assemble the arches in a room that still had members of the public sitting in it. So this year, I created an arch pattern that gave me guidelines to enable me to work within them. I ran the gold balloons on the inside and outside edge. This helped greatly. I also positioned the star balloons in a symmetrical pattern. Again this made decorating this arch so much easier... Random designs are very hard to make look good!
I hope that with the help of Matthew's (Lewis) and my tips for a successful New Years campaign it should give you some really helpful pointers when you come to planning New Years Eve 2016!