Monday, September 5, 2016

Balloon Basics - Bubble Balloons

Qualatex® Bubble Balloons are a relatively new balloon made from stretchable plastic, making it unusual and eye-catching. Unlike a Microfoil® balloon, it is inflated until all the creases at the seams have been removed, making it more like a beach ball, and looks great from all angles.

Bubble Balloons are non-allergenic, making them ideal for hospital gifts and deliveries. They do not oxidise* and floating times are mainly measured in weeks rather than days.
22" "Birthday Pink Starburst Sparkle"
U.S. Patent No. 6,782,675

Single Bubbles

These stunning balloons are available in 22". They will float for approximately 2-4 weeks.
They come in a fantastic range of designs including licensed characters, birthday including milestones and age. New baby and special occasion. They are extremely versatile and can be used in balloon bouquets, centrepieces and to make fun little character designs.

These balloons are simple and elegant, with 3-D designs that look beautiful from any angle. They have self-sealing valves and come with a pre-attached ribbon.

To find out how to inflate a Qualatex Bubble Balloon correctly, view the short clip below.

Double Bubbles
24" "Baby Blue Bear"
U.S. Patent No. 6,758,715

These 24" balloons certainly have the "how did they do that" wow factor displaying a balloon inside a balloon creating a magical show-stopper! They have self-sealing valves and come with pre-attached ribbons. The inflating will be done in three steps:

  • Inflate a small puff of helium through the "A" valve, you can use an Auto-Foil outlet for this.
  • Now go to valve "B", using an Auto-Foil outlet, fully inflate the inner balloon.
  • Now go back to the "A" valve, using a latex outlet, gently inflate the outer balloon until all the creases have been removed. 
If you find that the inner balloon looks like it has gone down a little, this will because of the pressure change within the outer balloon. To puff the inner balloon back to its original state, I recommend that you use a small hand-pump or pocket pump to add just a few puffs of air, and not to attempt adding  additional helium, as it is difficult to measure accurately how much you will need and you can easily burst the inner balloon.

To find out how to inflate a Qualatex Double Bubble Balloon correctly, view the short clip below. 

Deco Bubbles

These are probably one of my favourite balloons. They are perfect for so many different occasions with endless creative possibilities for a balloon professional. This un-valved balloon is available in both 20" and 24" sizes, with fantastic floating times of 7-10 days for the 20" and 3-5 weeks for the 24"- the different floating times will be subject the type and amount of balloons that you add to a Deco Bubble. Once filled and fully inflated, they should be closed using a 160Q or 260Q balloon.

Luc Bertrand, CBA of WaW Balloons, Vichte, Belgium has made a great video that shows clearly how to inflate and tie a Deco Bubble.

Bubbles Helium Guide

Over inflating or under-inflating Bubbles can decrease floating times, so follow the package instructions to inflate correctly and achieve the best float times. Actual flying times will depend on temperature and atmospheric conditions. Deco Bubble float times will vary if other types of balloons are placed inside. Giving accurate gas capacities is almost impossible as everyone inflates their balloons slightly differently. Personally, I only inflate a Bubble Balloon to the point at which all the creases disappear, however, if I am adding tassels or tulle to a Bubble Balloon, I might add in a little more helium or balloon gas to give it greater floating capacity.  As I already mentioned,  giving accurate capacities is not easy, but I have used my Dual Split-Second Sizer to help me measure the volume of helium that is used to inflate the 20" and 24" Deco Bubbles and found that a 20" Deco Bubble took approximately 1 cu.ft. - 0.0282 of helium or balloon gas and the 24" took approximately 1.5 cu.ft - 0.0425 mof helium or balloon gas.
Here are the suggested average number of Bubble Balloons inflated from a 3.6m3 tank.

  • 22" Single Bubbles 90-130
  • 24" Double Bubbles 85-105

Air Bubbles

New for 2016, the 12" Air Bubbles provide all the fun of Bubble Balloons but in a smaller size. Sold in packs of 10, they are perfect for air-filled store displays, point-of-purchase sales, and fun decor accents! 

Follow these simple steps to perfect Air Bubbles.

Step 1. Remove Bubble from foil packaging. If you do not intend to inflate all 10 Air Bubbles at the same time, I recommend that you re-seal the packet using your heat sealer or place into a zip lock bag to prevent the Bubbles from drying out.

Step 2. Inflate Air Bubble using a hand pump until the balloon is fully inflated and has no wrinkles at the edges.

Step 3. Using a heat sealer, seal the Bubble, I like to start close to the opening of the balloon, rather than higher nearer the actual balloon, this gives me the opportunity to try again if it fails the first time. The heat sealer needs to be set to a low temperature, I recommend  starting on setting 2, you may need to adjust slightly, either way depending on your own heat sealer.

Check out this short video clip that demonstrates the steps above.

To make this design, I inflated an
11" Orange latex balloon inside
the Birthday Cupcake Air Bubble 
and secured it to a Cello-Cup and
Attached it to a Candy 
Bouquet Weight
These balloons are perfect for double-stuffing. You can make the balloon look so different simply by adding an 11" latex balloon inside! This is also a great tip if you do not own a heat sealer but would like to sell this balloon. To keep the balloon clear, simply use an 11" Diamond Clear 11" latex balloon inside and you would never know the difference.

To Make this design, I inflated 
an 11" Robin's Egg Blue latex balloon
inside the Birthday Cupcake Air Bubble
and secured it to a double 5-ballon Cluster base.

©Premium Balloon Accessories

Candy Bouquet Weights used with 

Original Cello-Cup™Clear and

Candy Connectors

Check out this short video clip that demonstrates how to put an 11" latex balloon inside an Air Bubble.

For me, Bubbles Balloons are a truly magical balloon in every way! For decorators and retailers, the Deco Bubbles are just fabulous, they look so elegant and can be prepared several days in advance of an event, giving you more time to work on other event decor that cannot be prepared so far in advance. Decor Bubbles are so versatile, they can be filled with latex balloons, Microfoil balloons, confetti and even feathers! Bubble Balloons are long lasting, vibrant and fun! 

This is Part 3 of Balloon Basics - to view Part 1 "Inflating and tying latex balloons," click HERE and to view Part 2 Balloon Basics - Microfoil Balloons click HERE.

In the UK and around Europe, Qualatex Europe runs a 1-day course for beginners. This full-day seminar embraces all aspects of the balloon business, including health and safety requirements, balloon inflation, bouquet construction, and simple garland creation. It includes a comprehensive, full-colour manual that will be a valuable reference guide on float times, pricing, basic design principles, and more. To find out where and when the classes are being held, check out the Education Calendar HERE for full details.

The Qualatex Balloon Network℠ - QBN® program, is also a great way to learn the foundations of running a successful balloon business. This 3-part DVD program covers:
To find out more about the QBN program and the benefits of becoming a QBN member, click HERE

Happy Ballooning!


*Oxidation - Whenever you inflate a latex balloon, you immediately subject it to oxidation, it is just a fact of atmospheric physics. Latex balloons will become cloudy and take on a velvety appearance. To prevent balloons oxidising during delivery, store and transport the balloons in a clear plastic bag. You can also use products such a Balloon Shine™, that will help to prevent oxidation and add a long-lasting sparkle to your balloons.

1 comment:

Aalya said...

Thanks for explaining the different types of balloons used for party decoration. It was very interesting to read.
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