Balloon paper shades are popular for craft projects because they are so versatile. You can customise them with paint and ink, transforming a plain balloon shade into something that complements your decor. One original idea includes making a paper balloon globe. You can find these paper balloon shades at craft stores and party supply stores. If you want them in bulk for a classroom project, party stores sell them in bulk.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Globe template
- Thick cardboard
- Drawing pins
- Ballpoint pen
- White paper ball lantern
- Chalkboard eraser
- Ink pen
- Acrylic paints
Print a globe template ( good sources are nmm.ac.uk/make-your-own/globe and challenger.org/programs/iss/GeoCreateATennisBallGlobe.pdf). You may also use a globe stencil with curved points for use on spherical objects. Cut out your template and pin it to a piece of cardboard. Poke holes along the outlines of each continent and country with a thumb tack, making sure each hole is open and free of obstruction. Stencils are usually ready-to-use and available at craft stores.
Wrap your template or stencil around the middle of your white paper ball lantern, taping it where it overlaps. Fold the pointed flaps around the top and bottom of your lantern, taping them in place. The template should be snug, but keep the tape off of the lantern itself to avoid tears.
Rub a piece of coloured chalk (blue, pink and green work well) vigorously over the eraser. Build up as much dust on the eraser as possible. Rub the eraser over your template or stencil. The chalk dust should filter through the holes or stencil lines and create a map on your lantern. If the dust doesn't go through the holes, widen them with the tip of a ballpoint pen.
Gently remove the template or stencil. Copy over your chalk dust lines with pen, blowing carefully on the dust to remove it as you go. Paint in the countries as desired with acrylic paint.
Tips and warnings
- Use primary colours for a child’s room and saturated jewel tones for a study or teen’s room. You may also add a little water to the paint to create faded washes. Ochres and browns create a vintage look.
- Spray some paint sealer over your lantern to preserve it longer, especially for use in classrooms and children’s rooms.
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