Weather and balloons

November 9, 2010

So,  I started thinking about what role the weather  plays in balloon decorating and how we need to have a contingency plan, backup, substitutions, etc..ready to go at the first sign of inclement weather. Here are some of things I have personally experienced and developed to ensure my decor stays fresh and more importantly “up” .

Rain and wind are huge problems for outdoor decor – rainwater can weigh down the balloons and also cause spotting on foil balloons. High winds pretty much flatten arches and can knock centerpieces off  of the tables. Whenever possible, try using a PVC frame for outdoor arches – they will hold their shape in any weather. I also do not recommend using the letter shaped foil balloons outside – they have small tether points and could tear away from the line. Nothing like trying to spell “Class of 2010” and the CL blows away…

Columns can also be made on pvc pipe frames. It will eliminate swaying in the wind and falling down from the weight of the water from rain. A large gumball balloon on top and you have a great alternative to a balloon arch if the weather is a factor.

When creating centerpieces for outdoor events, make sure that the base is as heavy as possible.  I  recommend using clay dishes (like from clay pots in a garden center) with Styrofoam and foil paper poofs to hide the foam. Washer weights will help anchor the balloons to the base and you can cover them with matching foil paper so it looks seamless. Keep in mind,  the wind will twist the ribbons on loosely grouped balloons into jumbled bunches of knots; whenever possible,  try making clusters or topiary shapes on a single ribbon to avoid the tangled look. Or you could make them on a painted or fabric covered wooden dowel and use air-filled  balloons rather than helium.

Lastly,  the most important thing to remember is to make sure you discuss with your client the alternatives and possibilities, and that they agree to them so that everyone is on the same page on the day of setup.  This way they can be assured of getting  great high-quality decor in any type of weather!!