The Balloon Council
Date: Thu, 10 Jun 1999 15:43:24 +1000
From: BALLooN DECOR <>
Subject: Re: Balloon sizing

  Welcome to the real WONDERFUL WORLD OF BALLOONS. It's my experience that there are hundreds of do' & don'ts about ballooning that change depending on where you are (sea
level) tempature, brand of balloon, inflating method, final use of the balloon and the quality of the actual batch of balloons.
Most of us had to learn the good old fashioned way by experience and I know I've done plenty of the don'ts when I should've been doing the dos. Even after 9 conventions,
numerous education days, workshops, classes and luckily a few very interesting jobs I still find myself testing the stress and strain I'll be putting on a balloon for my
next creation.
Try to stick with one brand for a while so you become familiar with it's quirks and perks.
You've done the right thing by starting with the QBN tapes they are full of good sense advice. I suggest that you don't leave it there, you should beg, borrow or buy all
other forms of information regarding the use of balloons. Books, tapes even CDs are available  and they all have sound pieces of advice but not necessarily the right advice
to suit everyone's situation in their invironment. Try to way up why one decorator says YES when the other says No. It's not easy but with a vast variety of knowledge
you'll eventually start to form your own style and most of all opinion. 
I personally would never inflate SOME  balloons to their 'noted' size because I find them too difficult to work with. I could never advise someone not to put balloons
outside because of oxidizing for I like the effect. Do you use paper clips? I don't. What's the best way to size width or length? I could go on for hours or megabytes at
Trial and Error are two good words to learn and practice.  Experiment is another. I know your looking for advice and guidance but learning balloons is a little like raising
children you have to be gentle with them, try not to make too many mistakes, learn a as much as you can from other people's advice, allow them to find their own limitations
and always be willing to change your mind at the last minute.
I don't believe ballooning is a true science but I respect it as a true art medium and like all forms of art it's all in the eye of the beholder.

Be brave ...........  take a chance ..........  invent.
Be studious ............ listen ........... invent.
Be cautious ............ don't take to many risks ...........  bend the rules if you have to break them.
Be always willing to try to re-invent ......... test the limits.

If you want a blue print for every thing you build then buy yourself some Leggo

I honestly feel that the only real differance between successful balloon artist and a beginner is experience. If you can't get experience quick enough on the job then get
it in your workshop. That's where I learnt most of my hands on skills.

Good Luck,

Sean O'Kelly
Balloon Decor
Victoria, Australia

a Sandy J. wrote:

> Hi all,
> I bought the first tape in the Qualatex training series for certification.
> I found it very interesting.  I'm sure that anyone with balloon experience
> would think it was for rank beginners, but as a beginner, I guess I'm too
> 'rank'.  There were a lot of questions I wish I could have asked, and when
> the next local beginners class comes around, I'm going to take it.  But
> that's a month away, and maybe I can get some advise now.  My first question
> is - how big do you inflate balloons?  I know it depends on temperature,
> in-doors, out-doors, etc, but IN THEORY, how big?  Should an 11" balloon be
> inflated to 11" or is that at the bursting point?  I filled a couple of 5"
> balloons as big as I could (with air), then sized them to 5" and stuck them
> outside (air conditioning out to 92 degress in the sun).  I though that they
> would burst, but all they did was oxidize.  I made a bubble gum balloon with
> 3 5" hearts and a 260 inside a 16" balloon and the 260 burst an hour after
> it was finished.  It took awhile to figure out what exploded since the
> balloon was still floating!  Also, after fighting with the bubble gum
> balloon, my hands were aching!  Do you guys develop hand strength after
> doing this for awhile?
> TIA,
> Sandy
> Mansfield, Texas
> _______________________________________________________________
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