Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Part 1 Fabulous Balloon Walls - Created with Latex Round Balloons

There are many different ways to create walls with balloons. We can use latex rounds, QuickLinks, non-rounds and foil balloons such as Qualatex Starpoints, and others too! So, we need to determine which type of wall we want to create, or more importantly, which wall best suits our or our customers needs?

Elegant Balloon Wall and Sculptured Column by Sue Bowler

So why are we proposing a balloon wall to our clients - a client would generally never ask you for a balloon wall unless they have seen something specific on Instagram or Pinterest! It is your job to sell what a wall can do for them - sell the emotion and not the product! To give you an idea of what I mean by selling the emotion here are a few examples.

  • Suction power doesn’t sell vacuum cleaners; seeing the dirt it gathers does.
  • Ingredients don’t sell expensive face creams; the confidence they give you does.
  • And carbon footprint stats don’t sell electric cars; pride in eco-friendliness does.

Here are a few reasons why you might suggest a balloon wall to a client:

  • To create their corporate logo
  • To create a theme background
  • To create a theme entrance
  • To create a photo or stage back-drop
  • To enhance a trade show or exhibition stand

I love designing and making balloon walls, and will always propose them to a client whenever possible. I have a client that now always insists that they have a balloon wall photo backdrop at all of their events! 

There are a number of different techniques that we can use to make balloon walls using latex round balloons:

  • Duplet Square Pack
  • Alternate Size Square Garland Pack
  • Traditional 4-Balloon Garland Pack
  • Organic

Duplet Square Pack
This is one of my favourite techniques. I really like that balloon walls made with this technique have a flat, smooth surface (not bumpy like balloons), straight sides, and really good definition on straight and diagonal lines. This type of wall can be made with a double-sided pattern or with a plain back; however keep in mind it is not as robust as other wall techniques.

Here are a few examples of d├ęcor using the Duplet Square-Pack Technique.

Elegant Tropical Balloon Wall and Organic Garland design by Sue Bowler, CBA

Its Birthday Balloon Wall and Decor by Sue Bowler
Baby 1st Birthday Balloon Wall Backdrop
Design by Sue Bowler

Zoe Adam-Jones of Jazzer's Trading designed and made this fabulous backdrop  Duplet Square Pack Balloon Wall at the 2019 Qualatex Event in Brazil.
Zoe Adam-Jones, CBA of Jaz Trading, designed and made this
fabulous backdrop using the Duplet Square Pack Balloon technique
at the 2019 Qualatex Event in Brazil.

Watch as Chris Adamo, CBA, demonstrates the duplet square pack wall method for his mountain scene design. For more information and tips check out the great article in Balloon Images Issue 2

Alternate Size Square Pack Garland
When making balloon walls using this technique, you can guarantee that it will be robust and will always looks good! It is probably the most widely used method of precision wall. It is made by alternating clusters of four balloons in two different sizes packed on to 50lb Dacron line. This produces a square shape garland.

Alternate Clusters of four balloons in two different sizes

The garlands when built are laid side by side and interlocked, then joined together 

The difference in size between the two sets is relative to the size of balloon used.

2" - 4½" = use a ½" differential
4½" - 7½" = use a 1" differential
7½" - 11" = use a 2" differential

5cm - 11.5cm = use a 1.5cm differential
11.5cm - 19cm = 2.5cm differential
19cm - 28cm = 5cm differential

Practice to see which sizes work best for you. The garlands once built are placed side -by-side and interlocked, then connected together.

This method produces quite a smooth design with a flat surface, it allows for good diagonal lines and triangles. However, not all balloon wall types work with different patterns!

Here are some examples of balloon walls using the Alternate Size Square Garland method:

Alternate Size Balloon Wall by Sue Bowler
Chrome Silver & Gold with Black - Alternate Size Square Pack Balloon Wall
Design by Sue Bowler

Check out Chris Adamo's demonstration where he shows the alternate square pack method to create an ice cream truck photo op.

Ice-Cream Truck by Chris Adamo
Ice-Cream Truck Photo Op by Chris Adamo, CBA,
of The Balloon Crew, Sydney, Australia

Ice-Cream Truck Decor by Chris Adamo
Ice-Cream Truck by Chris Adamo

Consistent sizing of balloons is paramount with balloon walls! Some methods are not very forgiving of badly sized balloons or inconsistent  'dupleting'  of balloons. To form the duplets, we must make sure that the balloons are tied as tightly together as possible, leaving no slack latex between the knot and the inflated part of the balloon.

Everyone will pack clusters on to line at a particular tension. It is usual to have only one person pack the garlands while others inflate and tie. This is not possible on large jobs, so you will need to practice consistent sizing and packing with your crew. 

Organic Balloon Walls
It would appear that there are many different techniques used to create Organic Style Balloon Walls. I suppose this is not surprising, as there are equally many different techniques to create Organic Garlands. I personally have used two different methods, and I will share one of the techniques that I used. We will look at other methods in Part 2.

I was contacted by a brand development agency who asked me to create a balloon and flower wall for a press event in London. 

When building a wall like this, it is important to consider how stable it needs to be. The balloon themselves are not heavy, but when you load it with lots of faux flowers, the weight increases considerably. So my first consideration was how was I going to support my balloon wall?

Thinking about what would work best, I came up with the idea of using a wire grid frame. My next task was to find a grid frame that would be suitable. After a little research, I found the perfect solution!

One of the client's criteria was that the balloons needed to be pastel tones to suit the faux flowers that they were supplying for the wall. 

Organic Balloon & Flower Wall by Sue Bowler
Organic Balloon & Flower Wall by Sue Bowler

I loved making this wall and learned a great deal whilst building it. I was really happy with the end result, as was the client. This wall took around eight hours to build, including the construction time to build the panels. 

A huge thank you to Chris Adamo and Zoe Adam-Jones for sharing their knowledge and inspiration! 

In Part 2 of this Balloon Wall blog post, we will look at a fabulous collection of Balloon Walls made from QuickLinks™️.

Happy Ballooning! 

Follow me @suebowler


No comments: