Balloon Twisting Lingo

The twisting lingo used by balloon artists isn't a difficult language but knowing just what the specific twists are sure does help you follow along as you're trying to learn a new creation!

A couple simple things to remember about twisting balloons:

I'm right handed so if you're a lefty, just switch the right/left directions.

  • Each time you twist the balloon, you create a 'bubble.'
  • Always twist the same direction (or you'll untwist a previous bubble!).
  • When twisting multiple bubbles in a row, always hold on to the first and last bubbles that you've twisted.
  • The more a balloon is twisted, the softer it gets.
  • If a balloon is too soft, it won't hold a shape.

Ready for some twisting lingo basics? OK, here we go...

Balloon Twists: (Diagrams to come soon - I hope!)

  • Basic Twist: To create a bubble, pinch the balloon with your left thumb and index finger and twist it 3 - 4 times with your right hand.(I use 4 twists to make sure the balloon has a complete rotation).
  • Lock Twist: This is the basic twist to 'lock' bubbles into shapes. To join two bubbles together at the twists, hold them parallel, gently pull the bubbles slightly away from rest of balloon and twist them together 3 times.
  • Pinch Twist: This is used to make small ears or create joints. You simply form a bubble and twist it's two ends together. This is easier to do if you squeeze the bubbles down on either side with your left hand and gently pull the bubble up with your right hand before you twist. This gives you more room for twisting!
  • Fold Twist: Make a long bubble, fold it in half and twist the two ends of the bubble together. (This is really the same as the Pinch Twist, just with a bigger bubble!)
  • Tulip Twist: To make a tulip, inflate a balloon about 2 1/2 - 3 inches. With your right index finger, push the knotted end into the balloon to the bottom of the bubble. With your left hand, pinch the bottom of the bubble, grabbing the knot. Gently pull you finger out of the balloon and twist the bubble just above the knot. Pushing the twist/knot back into the bubble gives it a little extra pressure for holding it securely. (This is also called the Apple Twist when using a round balloon.)

Hope these few balloon 'twisting lingo' basics help you out, now get some balloons and get twisting!

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