Monday, September 28, 2009

Balloon Bean Bags

We thought we'd give everyone a break from all the baby projects...but there is still more to come! In the meantime, we thought we'd share this fun project we found for making bean bags out of balloons! Actually, when they are finished they feel more like stress balls - pretty cool! This little project takes just minutes to make, but has become a kid (and grown-up) favorite around here.

What you need:
  • 3 balloons (about 11")
  • about 3/4 cup of small dried beans (we used back beans)
First, blow up your balloons, then let the air out. This stretches them out so that it's easier to fill them. Then take your first balloon (any color, since this one won't be seen once the ball is finished) and attach it to the small end of a funnel. Then slowly start adding your beans, working them down the neck of the balloon as you go. We found that as the balloon became more and more full it was harder to add more beans because they got stuck in the neck of the balloon. If this happens, just take the balloon off the funnel carefully and blow it up a little. The beans will fall to the bottom of the balloon and you can put the balloon back on the funnel and continue filling.

Once your balloon is full of beans, snip the ribbed part of the neck. Then snip the necks in the same way off the other two. Take your second balloon and stretch it over the first one, covering the first one's neck. Repeat with the third balloon, snipping more off it's neck as needed so that you can see the color of the second balloon underneath.

And you're done! We're also toying with the idea of trying to use sand instead of beans to fill these for a different texture. Enjoy!
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  1. Ooo...this looks fun. Definitely something my kids would enjoy! Thanks!

  2. Love it! Just thinking that because sand is sharp, it might be rough on the balloons. Maybe something like short grain rice? Something small like those would also fall through the neck more easily too.

  3. i rec'd one of these from finland, the artic circle. white balloons filled with rice. JUST like snow balls, even sounded like a snow ball (squeaky-crunchy sound). I think it was filled with rice. so glad to know how to make it!

  4. Sorry, but this was an absolutely ridiculous project. And Im glad I tried it before I needed it. It took over an hour of struggle and working split peas into one balloon then trying to get the second balloon on and the whole thing exploded. Thinking I was doing something wrong I reviewed several other sites for different directions. I gave up and made duct take bean bags- 30 in under an hour.

  5. Love it! Thank you! I saw a few of these last summer and wanted to make them but wasn't sure how. Easy Peasy! I used black beans and didn't have a funnel. Still worked fine.