Make a Balloon Animal

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Veggie Tales

My little girl just loves the Veggie Tales characters. She has all their videos and frequently sings their songs and mentions snippets of their stories. So I was almost forced into designing a balloon sculpture rendition of the main characters. By the way, my little girl is a college graduate, married, and works for an international brokerage firm.


Each of the three characters in the photo has a different kind of nose. It's the nose that makes attaching the eyes possible. (Some people prefer to make small eye and nose bubbles and glue them on with rubber cement. These instructions are for the 'balloon-only' method). In all three figures, the eyes are made from a small segment of white balloon, twisted in two to make two connected bubbles as in the previous sculpture. These are then wrapped around the nose and then given a twist to hold them in place. Now for the noses.

For Bob the tomato I used a 6-inch red heart balloon inflated only enough to look like a 4-inch ball (the lobes don't inflate until you get more air pressure into the balloon). Squeeze the balloon to force air into one of the lobes, and then give that lobe a few twists. This gives you a 4-inch ball with a smaller (about 1-inch) ball on one side. Wrap the eyes around the small ball, decorate with a marker, and you have Bob.

Larry the cucumber is made in essentially the same way, but using a green 350 instead of a heart. Inflate the 350 from the far end about 12-14 inches. Tie the knot close to the bubble, making it fairly firm. The long nozzle may be cut off when you're through. Since a straight balloon has no lobes, you need to make one yourself. Fold (NOT TWIST) the balloon at the point you want to attach the eyes and grab a bubble from one side. Twist this bubble and then let the rest of the balloon striaghten out. The balloon will now have an hourglass shape where you took the twist. To minimize this, slowly untwist the nose bubble until the air just begins to escape into the main balloon. When the nose diameter gets below about an inch, twist it shut again and attach the eyes. Add eye details and a mouth with a marker. I used a piece of a gummed label for the tooth.

Junior asparagus in the photo was my first version, but I have since developed a version that looks more asprargus-like. Before you inflate the balloon, take a balloon scrap and tie a couple of knots in it to make one big knot. Then drop this 'raisin' into the balloon. You will use this later when you make a 'Raisin twist' for the nose.
Inflate a 260 balloon about half way and tie it.

At the knot, make a half-inch pinch twist and then toe twist it in two, giving two very small bubbles at the tip. Follow this with three half-inch pinch twists, spaced evenly around the balloon. Next make two 3/4 inch pinch twists, one on each side of the balloon. Follow in the same way with a pair of 1-inch pinch twists and a pair of 1.5 inch pinch twists. The result should be a bumpy section of balloon, tapering to a point at the end. This is the asparagus top.
Locate the place you want to put the nose, and grab the "raisin" through the side of the balloon (you did keep it out of the top section didn't you?!). Twist the raisin around, just as you did the noses for the other faces and attach the eyes.

If you want to make Bob more in scale with the other two figures, you can use an 11-inch round balloon, inflated to about 8 inches. Push the knot into the balloon as though you were making an apple twist except grab the knot through the side of the balloon. Attach the eyes as in the raisin twist. You will probably want to make the eyes from a 350 for this version to keep them in scale. The indentation at the stem is the top of the tomato. If you want, you can cut leaves out of uninflated green 11-inch rounds and attach by pushing the stems into the indentation.

For the official Veggie Tales page Click Here

For Veggie Tales Puppets and other info Click Here

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