Yup, it’s bookish DIY time again! I’m kicking off the weekend with a DIY Friday post which features the cutest bookish air balloon mobile EVER!
So I’m going to be honest with you. This one takes forever to make… It’s not (too) difficult to put together, but it is pretty time-consuming. However, if you’ve got a day or two to spare (yes, that’s forever in my world), this is a fun and creative way to brighten up your room with some bookish bling!
The below list of materials may seem like the longest list in the universe, BUT most of the stuff on it are pretty standard household items, so you probably have most of these already.
What you need:
- Book pages
- Colourful paper (4 sheets)
- Thick paper (for the stencils)
- A pair of scissors
- Branch (optional)
- Paper adhesive tape/masking tape (optional)
- Stapler (optional)
- Coffee/tea (optional as always but highly recommended)
How to do it:
This mobile can be a bit tricky to put together because of all the small parts, but it’s definitely doable! I’ve got clumsy fingers, but I still managed to assemble this beauty, so I’m confident you can too! You just need patience and a good pair of scissors.
I’ve also taken a million images which will help you through each step, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to make yourself a bookish air balloon mobile!
The first thing you need to do is create a couple of stencils like the ones below. I googled ‘air balloon silhouette’ and picked the one I liked best. Then I transferred it to a word document and made it in two different sizes. Do keep in mind that the larger of the two should be able to fit onto the book pages you’re using for this.
I printed the stencils on some thick paper I had (e.g., cardboard or thick photo paper) as it’s easier to transfer the pattern if your stencil is more robust. However, regular paper will do if you don’t have anything thicker.
The next step is to draw the stencil on your colourful paper. I’ve chosen to use a light blue and a black, but you can, of course, use any colour you like.
To create the six small air balloons and three big ones, you will need two blue A4 sheets and two black.
Fold all sheets in half and draw three small air balloons on one sheet of blue paper and one sheet of black paper. Then you draw two big air balloons on one sheet of blue paper and one sheet of black paper.
Cut them all out and use the rubber to remove the pencil lines. I stapled the corners together to make it easier to cut out the balloons, but you could also glue them.
Then you draw your balloons on the book pages. I stapled a couple of pages together before drawing my air balloons on them to save time.
I could fit two small air balloons on one book page. The big balloon fits nicely within my book pages without using too much of the margin – I wanted text all the way towards the edge of my air balloon.
You need 18 small book page balloons and 9 big ones.
Then you start mixing the colours! I wanted my air balloons to have a bit more of the book pages showing, so I’ve layered the balloons with a book page first and last.
I decided to use all three colours for the big air balloons. For the small ones I did: two mixed colours, two blue/book pages and two black/book pages.
Then you glue all the pieces together. It’s important that you only apply the glue down the middle of the balloons and try to make the line fairly thin.
Start by applying the glue to one side of the book page. Then you press the blue or black balloon onto the book page and apply glue down the middle of that one too. Keep going until you finish with the last book page (don’t apply glue to this one).
Let the glue dry while you work on the others.
Once you’ve done them all, and the glue has had a chance to dry a bit, carefully open the balloon by folding the sides forward.
Cut a longish piece of string and thread it through the top of the balloon using a needle. Make sure to tie a knot at the end that’s big enough to keep the thread from slipping through the hole.
Repeat this with all the balloons.
Now it’s time to make the little basket underneath the balloon.
I used the leftover black paper from the balloons to create my little baskets. You could mix it up by using the blue and/or the book pages to create your baskets.
You create the big baskets by drawing a 4 cm X 4 cm square. Cut out all three squares and draw a 1 cm border inside them like on the picture below.
Do the same with the small baskets – their measurements are 2 cm X 2 cm with a 0.5 cm border. These are going to be sooo much fun to put together (not!).
Now fold the squares along the border you’ve just drawn.
Then you cut the squares at the edges on both sides like shown in the picture below.
Once you’ve cut all the squares, you then put glue on two sides like in the first picture below.
Then you fold the sides in and press the glued sides onto the little squares like in picture 2.
Now you need to create the strings that will tie the basket to the balloon.
Start by cutting two pieces of string for each basket.
Using a needle, you thread the string through the corners of the basket. Start from inside the basket and finish by poking the needle through the opposite corner from outside.
Repeat with the other piece of string on the opposite corners.
I had some black masking tape, which I used to hide the strings underneath the baskets, but you can skip this step if you want. The strings are so thin that they will be difficult to see once the air balloon is hanging in the mobile.
Then you just need to thread the four strings through the bottom of the balloon.
It can be a bit tricky to get the basket to hang horizontally, so you may have to fiddle around with it a bit.
Make sure to adjust the height of the strings, so the distance between the basket and the balloon is more or less the same for all your air balloons. Then tie two knots and cut off the excess string.
And that’s it! You’ve made an air balloon! Now you just have to repeat all of this eight more times! Yay – or something…
The only thing left to do is to tie all the air balloons to a fancy branch or stick them directly onto your ceiling.
And as always, I would absolutely love to see your bookish air balloon mobile if you decide to give it a go. Do share it with me on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook!