I am not going to give you an extensive library of balloon hat ideas here. There are enough great balloon hat books and DVD’s already out on the market. You can also google balloon hat ideas and you will get a load of great ideas that you can incorporate into your own balloon hat art. Many artists have shared their ideas through the internet on their own websites and also through YouTube. Here, I am going to give you the basics. Let’s go!
Most of the great hats consist of two hat bases, one balloon, and two balloon hat bases. Using these, you get a custom fit. From these bases use the add ons I describe here or add your own. The more, the better.
Balloon Hat Base
- Inflate the 260, leaving a 2-inch tail/nipple end. Why leave a nipple end? It leaves room for any twisting and you can add antennae at the end of it.
- Wrap the balloon around the person’s head, like a crown, and twist there the balloons meet. Please oh please don’t make it too snug. Too tight of a hat, and the kids will get headaches. Leave plenty of room.
Here are some ideas without adding any additional balloons…
- Twist a basic animal head rabbit, mouse, etc…. and now you have an animal hat. (See diagram #1)
- Point the nipple end down, put an antennae end on the nipple. Call it a radio controller hat.
- Attach the end of the nipple end to the rear of the hat, call it a helmet.
- Loop the nipple end, and attach it to the part of the balloon that encircles the head….it can be called a baseball hat.
2 Balloon Hat Base
- Inflate two 260’s, again, leaving a two-inch nipple in each. Twist the two nozzle ends together.
- Put on hand on each of the balloons and measure it around the head. Where they meet, twist together.
- Here are some ideas you can use with this hat base without adding any further balloons:
a. Football Goalposts
If you have a football team that stinks? Tell this joke….How do you keep the ________out of your back yard? Put up football goal posts!
b. Winged warrior (See diagram) All you have to do is do an ear twist in the middle of each strut…. Easy!
c. Braided Mohawk
Do a two-balloon braid with the struts that stick up. Attach them to the back of the hat.
d. Candy Cane
Do the same as a Braided Mohawk but leave it sticking straight up!
Folks, this is a no brainer. These hat bases are begging to be “tricked out” Let your imagination run wild.
Here’s a bonus…. I used this hat base to build the skyscraper hat that touched the top of the ON Center in Syracuse New York. Yes, I cheated a little bit. Look at the picture and you will see the long string of balloon going out of the picture. At the end of the string are 20 helium-filled 9-inch balloons. The hat base crown was built on top of the two-balloon hat base and the hat base itself is as tall as the boy. Yes, he did wear that thing all over the convention floor. I don’t know, but is this the world record tallest balloon hat? I wonder…
Balloon Add Ons
Here are just a few….
A string of Pearls….
Twist a 260, or even a 160, into little balls (The most I ever got from one 260 was 30 little bubbles….) and add it anywhere. How about having a string of these climbing the braided candy cane hat described here? How about adding it to the one balloon base, crawling up the step of the flower (You added a flower to the top of the piece sticking up at the front.)
2 Balloon Braid
Add this to either of the bases……connect it from front to back of either…..add a string of pearls…..the ideas go on and on…
Inflate a 260 (or 160) halfway…put a poodle tail on the nipple end….
How about inflated about 7 to 10 of these, connecting them together at the nozzle ends…Attach it to any place on the hat? Usually, I attach them to the top of the hat…
As I stated at the beginning of this article, this was not an extensive treatise of balloon hats, but a primer, a basic start. I hope that it has inspired you to let your imagination run wild and create your own.
1 thought on “How to make Balloon Hat Basics”
Great article! Thanks William. The sketches are very helpful.