Balloon towers add an impressive display to a party or special event without requiring helium or special skills to put together. Each layer of the tower is a set of four balloons tied together, with ribbon run through the middle to hold an entire stack or tower in place. One full tower requires 32 balloons; feel free to adjust the amount for an even taller tower. If you desire, make the top of the tower with balloons of an alternate color and top it all off with a cone made of decorative paper.
Things You'll Need
32 medium or large round latex balloons in desired color(s) (per tower)
Balloon pump (optional)
Trash bag (optional)
Roll of ribbon in coordinating colors
Zippered sandwich bag
Decorative paper such as gift wrap in desired color or pattern
Pen or marker
Large decorative helium balloon in desired style
Inflate and tie each balloon so all balloons are approximately the same size. Use a balloon pump, if you desire, to prevent having to inflate all the balloons with lung power, or enlist a few friends to help. Place the balloons in a trash bag if you are concerned about them rolling out of reach.
Tie the knotted ends of balloons together in pairs, using the extra latex beyond the knot to tie one balloon to another. If you are using more than one color for your tower design, select balloons of the same color for each pair.
Twist one pair of balloons over another pair at the knots so the balloon structure becomes a set of four. Use matching pairs of the same color if you want the layer to be all one color, or use an alternate color for a two-tone tower that features two colors per layer.
Unwrap 8 feet or so of ribbon from the roll and then cut the ribbon. Tie one end to the knots in the center of the set of four balloons.
Place a handful or two of small pebbles or fishing weights inside a zippered sandwich bag to create a weight for the balloon. Close the bag and tie it to the the knotted center of the connected balloons using a short piece of ribbon. The bag sits beneath the stack of balloons.
Create another set of four balloons by tying to pairs together. String the ribbon through the balloon structure near the knot area and then stack the second set of four atop the first, tugging the ribbon to remove any slack.
Create additional sets of four balloons, stringing them all onto the existing layers of four balloons per layer until the entire tower is eight layers tall. Tie the end of the ribbon around the knots at the top tier of the tower, removing any slack in the ribbon first, to create a tight stack of balloons.
Cut a piece of ribbon at least 12 inches long. Hold it up above the top stack of the tower as an approximate measuring device from the center of the balloon layer to 3/4 of the way out, or as far as you would like the cone tower topper to reach. Draw a line on the ribbon at this cone-ending point using a marker or pen.
Flip the decorative paper color- or design-side down. Tape a marker or pen to the small piece of ribbon at the point marked on it.
Hold the loose ribbon end near the center of the decorative paper, holding the tip of the pen or marker down at the other end with the ribbon pulled taught. Arc the pen or marker around to draw a circle, much like using a compass.
Cut out the decorative paper circle, then cut a slit from one edge to the center. Cut a small hole in the center of the circle as well. Fold the paper into a cone shape and tape it to retain the shape.
Position the cone atop the tower, pointy side up. Run the excess ribbon from the top of the tower through the hole in the cone. Tie a helium balloon to the ribbon at the top of the cone, cutting away excess ribbon so the balloon rests near the cone's point.
Create a themed tower in a color scheme fitting of the event; for instance, alternate layer of purple and yellow school colors for a graduation party or end-of-season sports celebration.
Create a spiral design by using four balloon colors for each layer, tied together in the same order each time. As you stack each successive layer, position the balloon slightly to the right of the balloon of the same color beneath it. Over the height of the tower, it looks as though the color spirals up the tower.