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Having a birthday in the family is such a special time.  Cake.  Gifts.  A party.  Spending time together.  You know.  All of the celebrating essentials.

It’s also a chance to make things.  One of the reasons that I love entertaining is that it opens my creative treasure chest.  Out comes one of a kind decorations, sweet party treats and fun activities to enjoy together. 

Lots of ways to make the birthday person feel important.    

Although making things for the birthday celebration is fun, I also like creating something special just for the birthday person to enjoy. 

This birthday balloon craft is a family craft project that you can make together.  Each person decorates a balloon (or many balloons – depending on how many you want in the bunch) using their own creative vision.  No rules – just artistic fun. 

It’s a great way to explore different art mediums and spend time doing art together as a family.   Plus, if you can keep it a surprise, the birthday person is really surprised the next morning.

You Will Need:

Free Printable Balloon Template

Mixed Media Art Paper (free affiliate)

Assortment of Art Supplies – watercolors, pastels, crayons, markers, colored pencils, pom poms, glitter (anything you can dream up)

Colorful Yarn (affiliate)

1. Download and print your free printable balloon template on white copy paper.  

Cut it out.

2.  Trace the template on mixed media art paper. 

Cut out the balloons.  For this balloon craft, I had six balloons in the bunch.  Each family member made two. You can also create a balloon bunch with more depending on the space you have to display it on and how many family members there are.

3.  Give each family member a balloon.  Let them decorate the balloon any way they want.  A few ideas….

What’s in a Name?  Add the child’s name to the balloon and place that one in the center of the bunch.

Age Matters.  In addition to a name balloon, see if someone wants to create an age balloon.  It’s always fun to know what milestone the person is celebrating.

Favorite Things.  Draw pictures of the person’s favorite things – food, music, movies, toys, places to go, things to do, etc.  We featured my little’s favorite stuffed buddies on two balloons and his number one Star Wars character on another.  Turns out these were his favorites.

Patterns are Fun.  If you are having trouble thinking about something to put on your balloon, try a pattern.  Polka dots, stripes, lines, circles or other repeated graphic elements all make wonderful balloon decorations.  Especially once you add color. 

3D Elements. There is no rule that the balloons have to be flat creations.  Add some 3D elements such as pom poms, buttons, little figurines, beads, gems or pipe cleaners.

Sprinkle on the Glitter.  Okay, all of you glitter haters, I know you will skip this step.  But the glitter does add a little sparkle to the balloons that was a nice touch for a few of them.  You can also decorate your balloon using glitter glue with less risk of spreading the glitter all around.

Think in Rainbows.  There’s something about rainbows and birthdays that work together.  Add painted rainbows, stripes or even polka dots.  

New Art Technique – Have a type of art that you’ve been wanting to try?  This balloon craft is the perfect place to explore your creativity.  I love the watercolor resist art method, so one of my balloons featured this technique.  Using a white crayon, I drew an anchor on the balloon.  Then, I watercolored blue paint on top.  It was really cool watching my anchor appear on top without watercolor on it.  

4. Measure out a piece of yarn about 2 feet long.  Secure to the back of each balloon with a piece of tape.

Attach your balloons to the display space using painter’s tape or other removable adhesive.  I wanted our birthday child to see them when he woke up, so I placed them on his room door.  You could also put them on a wall or along the stairs.  Anywhere you choose, make sure they can be seen and appreciated.

When displaying your balloons, arrange them in a balloon bunch formation.  Make sure each balloon has a spotlight, but they still look like they are bunched.

5.  Tie the yarn pieces together in a knot to make the balloons look connected as a bunch.  You wouldn’t want them to fly away.

This family balloon craft is a sweet way to celebrate a birthday.  It can even take the place of traditional birthday cards.  

Although we made this balloon craft for our own family, you can also send it as a card for birthdays celebrated from afar.  Make the balloons, attach the yarn and mail them to someone special.  In your package, provide some simple instructions for assembly.  This a great way to make any birthday honoree feel special no matter where they live.  

After you’ve revealed your balloon craft to the birthday person, leave it up for awhile.  It makes a beautiful decoration for all to enjoy. 

You can also make this balloon craft into a birthday family tradition.  Make a bunch of balloons for each family member one year.  Or you can create them year after year, keeping the old ones and displaying them as well.  It’s amazing to see how your family’s art skills and creativity develop over time.

And this craft is not just limited to celebrating birthdays either.  Make a set of balloons to celebrate graduation, retirement, anniversary or a new baby. 

It would also be a fun baby shower activity.  Have each baby shower guest decorate a balloon to welcome the new baby.  Then, once the baby arrives, display them on the nursery door, front entrance or send them to the new mom.  What a fun way to celebrate!

The best part is creating together.  I loved seeing how each person explored their own creativity in how they decorated their balloons.  We are looking forward to making another bunch for our next birthday celebration.

Happy Celebrating,

Natalie

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