Monday, 27 October 2014

Hot Air Balloon mobile DIY tutorial

by Bex

I spotted some little hot air balloon cocktail sticks in Tiger a few months ago for just £3 for a pack of 12.  Perfect for making two mobiles of six balloons each.

To make your own mobile using paper cocktail sticks you'll need:

Cocktail stick designs or other lightweight object to hang
Craft Knife
Double sided tape (you don't need the fancy dispenser - I used to use that when mounting prints for sale)
Nylon thread
Florist wire
Wire cutters
Hot glue (not necessary if you trust your knots)

So, how did I make it?  You can probably figure it out just by looking at the design as it's pretty simple but basically I took the cocktail sticks off first, then trimmed away the excess card (the bit for holding them together as I would be gluing them anyway) to make them perfectly rounded at the top & side.  I used a stanley knife for this as I've yet to buy a craft knife.

You can see it's a bit rough but this bit will be stuck together and hidden.

After trimming the edges, I cut pieces of nylon thread and tied knots in one end to stop it slipping out when I stuck the balloons with the thread inside.  I used double sided tape to stick the balloons open and made sure they hung straight (which meant the thread coming out off centre due to the weight over to one side with the card sections).

It was then a case of hanging them off some wires I had from the florist section of Country Baskets (I'd bought them after the Floristry class I attended).  I simply bent the top wire in half and bent the ends up to stop the thread falling off the ends.  For the lower wires, I cut one full size wire in half before doing the same bending in the middle and at the ends.

I decided on the various lengths I wanted each balloon to hang and tied them all on before securing the knots with hot glue.  Any that were pulling the balance off were pushed along the wire to the right place before gluing.

And voila:

Pretty simple really but very effective as the balloons are so brightly coloured.  I think they look fab flying around.

I planned to make 2 mobiles for above the twins' cots but after making the first one (being conscious of the length) and trying it above a cot hanging from the slanted wall it was just a bit too long and in the way when leaning over, as well as making my new gallery walls look cluttered hanging in front of them.  (The gallery walls will be revealed after the birth of the twins as they include their initials!)  Instead I decided to hang just 1 above the Hemnes drawers/changing station rather than over the cots as it could hang much higher in the centre of the ceiling, out of the way.  It's just in front of the window so it looks a lot better too and I'm hoping they spin nicely when there's a breeze.


Anonymous said...


M-J said...

This is awesome! What a great idea, and a lovely inexpensive mobile. Your kids are going to have the most beautiful nursery, can't wait to see pics! xx

Gwen - TheFoodieHistorian said...

I love this! Definitely on my to-make list for my new niece/nephew. I love Tiger... never trust myself not to buy everything though!

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