Most of the time when I’m working I ask the kids what kind of balloon they want me to make. Sure, sometimes we get the odd requests like ceiling fan, Texas armadillo, deer, or kangaroo. If there aren’t too many people waiting, we’ll give it our best shot. If I see a seemingly endless line of impatient kids and parents, I’ll ask them to choose something else like a dog or a spider, something I can make quickly without even thinking. People often ask me, “How long have you been doing this?” or “How long did it take you to learn all these?”
I’ve been making balloon animals since 1976. You do the math. It was back when you twisted a long skinny balloon 3 times, called it a dog, and handed it to the anxiously waiting child. These days you can’t get away with that. Even the simple dog uses at least 2 colors of balloons and has eyes drawn on it. Balloons have become an art form, continuously evolving. How long did it take? I’m still learning! The good news is that learning is fun.
Have you tried making balloon animals? Perhaps you got a kit at the party store or the toy store. Even with a pump and directions with both words and pictures, it was a challenge, wasn’t it? It’s not hard, but it takes practice and patience. You need to get the feel of it, to get it into your hands, so to speak. I can feel the difference between a fresh balloon and a stale balloon. Sometimes I can feel or smell the differences between the two major brands.
One morning I was working on something and at the same time telling TJ (my husband and balloon partner) how to make something else. “You need a double pinch twist, a short neck bubble, triple roll through, and another pinch twist with a 350.” Someone waiting said, “You people speak a different language. I have no idea what you’re talking about!” It’s true that we have our own lingo. TJ knew exactly what to do. We take classes, watch videos, belong to social media balloon groups, and go to an annual convention.
When you want good balloons, you can count on us. We care about our work and about the way it makes you and your guests feel.
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