balloon story

Here’s a balloon story you might want to know

“From a business perspective, at some point event planners found balloons to be a great source of a supplement for the flowers,”

said Mr. Hay, 35, the event planner who sold Mr. Danielian on the balloons for his bash and has organized parties for Sharon Stone and Kim Kardashian.

Clients, he said, would call and tell him, “I don’t have that budget. I don’t want to spend that much.’”

Mr. Hay would ask himself, “How can I fill the space in order for me to make it look good

and luxurious or excessive or grand, but at the same time not spend $50,000 on the flowers?”

Balloons were an answer. For small budget events, he used them to compensate.

But this was back when balloons came in standard colors and were associated more

with pizza parties in movie theaters than poker nights at Charlize Theron’s house.

“It’s turned into something else,” he said. “It’s not the regular balloons that we knew 20 in a bag. No.

These are balloons that are customized for that date, colors that are customized.”


When he looked back at old invoices,

he found receipts for installations that cost his clients between $25,000 and $35,000.

In “The Book of Circles,” the lecturer and author Manuel Lima who specializes in visual culture traces a centuries-old human obsession

with waves, curves, rounds and spheres: The cross-section of tree trunks, fat water droplets, infant cheeks the size of golf balls.

In his research, Mr. Lima cites studies that showed babies exhibited clear preferences for undulating lines, compared with straight ones.

He also writes about research that found that when asked to draw negative emotions,

people tend to draw sharp, rigid lines; others, like happiness, elicit curves.

Of course, Winnie the Pooh once provided a simpler explanation:

Nobody can be uncheered with a balloon.

The events of the rich and famous have their hallmarks rooms straining under the weight of pillar candles and 12-piece bands. Flower budgets that top $100,000. Those designs elicit awe, sometimes amazement, Mr. Hay said. But joy? A lifted spirit?

He’s not so sure.

“You might impress the person,” he said.

“But at the same time, I notice that the person doesn’t smile.”

When someone sees a balloon installation,

“even if it’s small even if it’s not $30,000, but it’s just $2,000 it still makes them smile, because what does it do?” he prompted. “It reminds them of their childhood.”

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