Balloon Basics

Education ›  Balloon Basics

Helium Charts

This helpful chart will help ensure you are prepared while on the road. Helium information will also be found on our product detail pages for your convenience.

Download here

Color Charts

Use these helpful guides when planning your balloon decor.

See them all here!

Basic Balloon Decor

  • Balloon Garland

    The ultimate building block of Classic Balloon Decor, an air-filled balloon Garland offers limitless design and profit possibilities year-round. Expand your design capabilities with this essential skill.

    11" Qualatex Round latex balloons
    Sizing Template
    50 lb. Monofilament Line
    2 stationary objects
    2 anchors


    1. Cut a piece of monofilament line and secure both ends to stationary objects, such as doorknobs or chairs, leaving a minimum of 1'-2' of extra line at each end. Make sure the line is tight.
    2. Air inflate two 11" balloons to 10" and tie them together. This is a “duplet.”
    3. Make a second duplet. Twist two balloons together, one from each duplet, to create a four-balloon “cluster.”
    4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until desired number of clusters is complete.
    5. To attach a cluster to the balloon line, separate two of the balloons in the cluster and push the cluster into the line. To secure, twist together the two balloons that were separated.
    6. Attach a second cluster to the lines as in Step 5. Rotate it 45 degrees so it is nested into the first cluster. Before securing, push its center firmly against the first cluster’s center. Twist together the two balloons that were separated.
    7. Repeat steps 5 and 6 until all clusters are secured to the line.
    8. Remove the line from the stationary objects and wrap the line around a couple of the balloons to secure it to the end of the cluster. Tie the excess line to anchor points as desired.
  • Balloon Collar

    How to Make Balloon Collars

    Learn 4 techniques for adding collars to your helium-filled balloons!

  • 260Q Balloon Curlies

    How to Make 260Q Balloon Curlies

    Learn two techniques to make fun 260Q curls!

  • Gumball Balloons

    How to Make Gumball Balloons

    Learn how to make fun gumball balloons!

    Gumball balloons offer a unique, colorful design that appeals to customers of all ages. Used alone or in bouquets, gumballs make a big impression while adding value to your offerings and profit to your bottom line.

    1 16" Diamond Clear Qualatex Balloon
    5 or more 5" Qualatex Latex Balloons
    Balloon stick or straw


    1. Stuff an uninflated 5" balloon inside an uninflated 16" Diamond Clear balloon with a balloon stick. Hold the necks even.
    2. Insert the helium nozzle into the 16" and inflate it to about 2/3 full.
    3. While holding the 16" balloon closed, insert the helium nozzle into the 5", inflate, tie, and trim the neck. The inflated 5" balloon will block the bigger balloon’s neck so the helium won’t escape.
    4. Insert another uninflated 5" balloon inside the 16" with a balloon stick while releasing the first inflated 5" into the big balloon. Fill the 5" with helium and tie and trim the neck as in step 3.
    5. Keep adding and filling 5" balloons until the big balloon has five or more balloons in it. If you need to, add helium to the big balloons as you’re stuffing it.
    6. Fully inflate the 16" balloon with helium, knot, and tie to ribbon.


    Tip: You can also fill Qualatex Deco Bubbles with gumballs to upsell and increase your profits. 

  • Topiaries

    With unlimited color combinations and add-ons, topiaries can set or strengthen the theme of any event.


    1. Air inflate and size two 5" balloons. Tie the two balloons together to make a “duplet.”
    2. Make another duplet and twist the two duplets together, separating the first duplet and making sure the balloons intersect at the knot so the center stays constant.
    3. Repeat two more times, separating the previous duplets and keeping the center constant.
    4. For the last two duplets, tie the balloons together as close to the neck as possible so it’s easier to keep the center constant. Add the last two duplets to make a round “ball.”
    5. The completed topiary can be used as the top of a centerpiece, made bigger and hung from a ceiling, or made smaller for the base of a bouquet.


    Tip: Always use 12 balloons to ensure a round topiary. Increase the size of the balloons, not the quantity, to make larger topiaries.

    How to Make Balloon Topiaries

    Learn how to make a balloon topiary for bases, centerpieces, and even ceiling decor!

Inflation & Sizing Tips

  • 5" Round Latex Balloons

    How to Inflate 5" Round Latex Balloons

    Learn how to properly use the Qualatex hand pump for 5" balloon inflation.

  • 11" Round Latex Balloons

    How to Helium-inflate 11" Round Latex

    Learn the proper way to inflate an 11" round balloon with helium!

    How to Size 11" Round Latex Balloons

    Learn how to properly size 11" round latex balloons

    When inflating round latex balloons, note the recommended teardrop shape. Even though Qualatex balloons stretch well beyond their properly inflated sizes, be careful not to over inflate, causing them to have a pear-like shape. When Qualatex balloons are underinflated, they have a round shape.

    Tip: For the right-sized balloon every time, use Balloon Sizing Templates. Simply inflate the balloon, slide it through the template, and release helium or air until the balloon can be pulled through the template.

  • Heart-Shaped Latex Balloons

    How to Inflate Latex Heart Balloons

    Learn the proper way to inflate Qualatex latex hearts!

    1. Grasp the base of the Heart to prevent inflation into the neck and provide sufficient length for tying.
    2. Inflate the balloon to its full, designated size. Overinflation will cause the base, or tip of the Heart to inflate, losing the Heart shape.
    3. Tie the balloon at the Heart’s base as high up on the neck as possible to maintain the shape.

  • GEO Blossom® Balloons

    How to Inflate GEO Blossom® Balloons

    Learn how to properly inflate Qualatex GEO Blossom® balloons!

    How To Helium-inflate a 16" GEO Blossom® Balloon

    Learn the proper inflation technique for 16" GEO Blossom balloons


    1. Grasp the base of the balloon, not the neck. This will prevent inflation into the balloon neck and ensure easier tying.
    2. Inflate the balloon to its full, designated size. GEO balloons can be sized with a template just like Round balloons.
    3. Tie the balloon as high up on the neck as possible to maintain its special shape.



  • GEO Donut® Balloons

    How to Inflate GEO Donut® Balloons

    Learn how to properly inflate Qualatex GEO Donut® balloons!

    How To Helium-inflate a 16" GEO Donut® Balloon

    Learn the proper inflation technique for 16" GEO Donut balloons

    1. Grasp the base of the balloon, not the neck. This will prevent inflation into the balloon neck and ensure easier tying.
    2. Inflate the balloon to its full, designated size. GEO balloons can be sized with a template just like Round balloons.
    3. Tie the balloon as high up on the neck as possible to maintain its special shape.


  • Microfoil Balloons - How to inflate all sizes and Tying Ribbon

    How to Inflate Qualatex Microfoil® Balloons

    Learn the proper tools to inflate Microfoil® balloons with air and helium!

    Microfoil balloons (18” or larger) are inflated through self-sealing valves, located on each balloon’s neck. Simply insert the helium inflation nozzle (designed for inflating Microfoil balloons) into the hole in the balloon neck and inflate. When the balloon is fully inflated, remove it from the nozzle and the balloon will automatically seal. Properly inflated Microfoil balloons are tight with uniformly spaced creases along the seams.

  • Single Bubble

    How to Inflate a Single Bubble Balloon®

    Learn how to properly inflate a Qualatex Bubble Balloon

  • Double Bubble

    How to Inflate a Double Bubble Balloon®

    Learn how to properly inflate a Qualatex Double Bubble Balloon

  • Deco Bubble

    How to Inflate & Tie a Deco Bubble Balloon®

    Learn 3 techniques for inflating and tying Deco Bubble Balloons!

  • Hi-Float Tips

    Add value to your designs using Ultra Hi-Float, which will help a latex balloons float for up to 20x its normal float time.

    Did you know an untreated Qualatex 11" latex balloon filled with helium will float for up to 24 hours, depending on atmospheric conditions? That same balloon treated with Ultra Hi-Float can float for up to 4 weeks for increased display time.

    Basic Instructions:

    1. Thread the balloon onto the pump nozzle, making sure to pull it all the way on so the Ultra Hi-Float is dispensed deep into the base of the balloon. Color-coded clips make it easy to dispense just the right amount for each balloon size. Push down on the pump as far as it will go. Remove the balloon.
    2. Hold the balloon neck up to prevent dripping. Gently rub the balloon to distribute the Hi-Float evenly, making sure to keep the Hi-Float out of the neck of the balloon.
    3. Helium inflate the balloon as usual and tie. To maximize float times, fully inflate the balloon.

    Tip: After inflating, allow the balloon to dry for a couple of hours before putting in a Hi-Float bag for transportation.


Basic Balloon Tying

  • Basic Knot

    1. Hold the neck of the inflated balloon between the tips of your left thumb and index finger. Pinch the neck roll with your right thumb and index finger and stretch out the neck.
    2. Turn the inflated balloon away from you and down, twisting your left wrist as shown.
    3. Lay the neck roll on the pad of your left thumb.
    4. Poke the neck roll through the circle created by the balloon neck with your left index finger while you open up the circle with your left index finger.
  • Tying Ribbon & Balloon Together

    How To Tie 11 Round Latex & Ribbon at Once

    Improve your balloon bouquet efficiency by learning how to tie your 11" balloons directly to ribbon

    1. In your left hand, lay ribbon across your palm, allowing enough ribbon for a tail to extend from your fingertips.
    2. Place neck of an inflated balloon across the ribbon (neck pointing up) and hold both securely with your left thumb.
    3. With your right hand, stretch the neck around the index and middle fingers on your left hand, and then back around to the front.
    4. Use your thumb and forefinger to tuck in the neck, making sure to grab the ribbon while making the knot. Remove fingers from the knot and curl the ribbon tail.
  • Tying 3' Latex Balloons

    How To Tie a 3 Foot Round Latex Balloon

    Tying 3' balloons can be difficult, but this technique makes it a breeze!

Just for Fun

  • Fun Balloon Facts
    • Qualatex latex balloons are made from 100% natural latex — not plastic. 
    • Latex balloons come from rubber trees. Latex is collected by cutting the tree’s bark, then catching the latex in a cup. Latex harvesting doesn’t hurt the tree!
    • Latex balloons are Earth-friendly! Rubber trees grow in rain forests. Latex harvesting discourages deforestation because latex-producing trees are left intact. A tree can produce latex for up to 40 years!
    • If the sound of a balloon popping startles you, you’re not alone. A bursting balloon actually creates a small sonic boom! Once a hole is made in an inflated balloon, the quick release of the balloon’s energy, or air, causes the hole to grow at almost the speed of sound in rubber. Since this speed is much higher than the speed of sound in air, the hole in the balloon actually breaks the sound barrier, creating a sonic boom.
    • Balloons were invented in 1824, the same year as the electromagnet.
    • Pioneer manufactures nearly one billion Qualatex latex balloons per year.
    • Helium-filled balloons float because helium is lighter than nitrogen and oxygen, the two components of air.
    • For 100 years, Qualatex balloons have celebrated big events worldwide — from American political conventions to Korean television specials.

    Learn more about balloons and the environment

  • Make a Balloon Dog!

    Classic Balloon Dog

    Learn how to twist a classic balloon dog!

    3-Twist Balloon Dog

    This balloon dog only requires three simple twists!

    For ease in tying a balloon, hold 1 inch of the balloon at the neck while you inflate it, so there’s enough room to tie it. Inflate a 260Q balloon with a Qualatex Balloon Pump. To tie the balloon, hold the neck between your left thumb and middle finger, with the nozzle of the balloon pointing up. With your right thumb and index finger, stretch the neck, and wrap it around the tips of your left index and middle fingers in a clockwise direction. Spread your left fingers, and tuck the nozzle down and through the loop with your right hand. Slide your left fingers out of the loop while holding the nozzle with your right hand.

    Twisting the Balloon

    • Inflate a 260Q, leaving about 6 inches uninflated, and tie it. Hold the balloon in your left hand with the uninflated end pointing right. Make three 1-inch bubbles for the Dog’s head and ears. To make a 1-inch bubble, pinch the balloon and twist it several times. An inch further, twist again, making sure to twist in the same direction.
    • To make ears, twist the last two 1-inch bubbles together at the base. This will keep the bubbles from untwisting.
    • Make a 1-inch bubble for the neck followed by two 2-inch bubbles. Twist the 2-inch bubbles together at the base to make front legs.
    • For the Dog’s body, make a 5-inch bubble followed by two 2-inch bubbles. Twist the 2-inch bubbles together at the base to make back legs. Leave a small bubble of air at the base of the tail to hold the back legs in place.
    • Roll the tail between the back legs to prevent them from untwisting and complete the Dog.


  • Overview

    Stacked and staggered bouquets provide an easy, attractive way to display Qualatex latex and Microfoil balloons. Once balloons are arranged, they can be tied to gifts, bows, chairs, railings, or other weights for impactful deliveries and decor.

  • Stacked
    1. Helium inflate all of the balloons using a sizing template to ensure all the latex balloons are the same size and attach to ribbon.
    2. Gather three of the latex balloons with ribbon in your fist and pull down tight on the ribbon to get all three balloons even and resting on your fist. All three balloon necks should be at the same level.
    3. Repeat Step 2 with the other three latex balloons and nest them into the first layer of balloons. (NOTE: The two layers should be spaced so you don’t see gaps between layers.)
    4. Attach the latex balloons to a weight.
    5. Add a Microfoil or Bubble Balloon so that it’s nested on top of the arrangement, then tie it to the weight.



  • Staggered
    1. To build consistent bouquets efficiently, mark a wall with pieces of masking tape spaced 7" apart.
    2. Helium inflate all of the balloons and attach to ribbon.
    3. In one hand, gather all of the balloons together at the lowest tape mark.
    4. Pull what will be the top balloon in the bouquet to the highest tape mark. Then pull the next highest to the second highest tape mark, and so on.
    5. Attach each balloon to the weight separately.



Quick Sand Weights

  • Instructions

    Keep balloons where you need them with sand weights. Quick and easy, these weights are ideal to have on-hand for any delivery or decor job.


    1. Fill an empty soda bottle with sand, stretch the neck of an 11" latex balloon around the bottle’s opening.
    2. Invert the soda bottle and squeeze slightly to force sand into the uninflated latex balloon.
    3. Tie the sand weight.


    Tip: Customize your sand weights by matching the balloons to the decor job. Or dress them up with squares of tissue and ribbon.