A little DIY from my book For Good Times for making a Hot Air Balloon display. Great for our Up, Up and Away party theme but also love the idea for a travel theme and Wizard of Oz Party!
MATERIALS White Crysanthemums (Mums), Tall Glass Vase, Cool Water, Food Colouring, Sharp Knife, shears or floral clippers, Giant Cloud Balloon, Helium, Twine, Round Basket, Clear Plastic, Stapler, Oasis, Scissors, Masking tape
DYE THE FLOWERS Fill the vase with cool water. Add drops of food colouring to the water until you reach your desired shade. Use approximately 25 drops per half cup of water and stir to get a rich, vibrant shade. Cut fresh, white mum stems at 45-degree angles, 3 to 5 cm up from the bottoms, to encourage maximum water absorption. Place the flower stems into the vase and allow the blooms to stand overnight or until their petals are filled with colour. Stand for up to 24 hours to achieve varying degrees of colour intensity.
MAKE THE BASKET Cut out a square of plastic to line your basket, push down into the basket centre and trim the edges. Staple the plastic to your basket to hold in place. Fit a cube of oasis in the centre of your basket and fill with water. Cut the stems of your flowers slightly shorter then the basket height and in tight bunches pushing the stems into the oasis, either in rows of two or three in order of the rainbow (ROYGBIV).
ADD THE BALLOONS Fill your giant balloon with helium and tie a knot at the end. Cut two pieces of twine, 2 metres each in length. Tie the pieces together in a knot in the centre of the two lengths. Fasten this knot to the bottom of the basket with masking tape. Pull one length of twine up, one down, one to the left and one to the right. Gather the four ends together a metre above the flower arrangements and tie a knot. Then tie the twine to the helium balloon and trim the ends.