Posted in Kinda Crafty!

Balloon Dart Painting!!

How many of you have seen the Princess Diaries movies?

Do you remember in the first one when Mia and her mom made the balloon dart painting?


And let me tell you….it was fantastic!

Balloon Dart Painting

I feel like every girl who has ever watched that movie has said about doing this balloon dart painting at some point in their lives. My best friend and I decided it was time to stop talking about it and just do it! We found a wicked sale on canvases (seriously, I’ve never seen a sale like this before. Buy 1 get 2 free. um…yes please) So we purchased our paints and water balloons, dug out some darts, and lugged it out to the backyard.

*cue problems*

(you didn’t think I wouldn’t have any, did you? remember the fishing experience…problem is my middle name)

We didn’t think through how to get both the paint and air into the balloon. (and this was after we realized her canvas had traveled back home to her house in her car with her dad that morning and we had to go pick up said canvas) This proved to be a quite a challenge for us to solve. But, we persevered, used our brains, tested various methods, sweat, cried a little bit (well not quite, but we felt like it), sweat some more, attempted another technique, and then finally(!) landed upon the perfect method to insert paint and air into said water balloon. So here, ladies and gentlemen, is the tried and true method to the balloon dart painting!


  • canvas – whatever size you like! mine was 12″ x 23″ while my friend’s was more of a square shape
  • water balloons – I don’t think any specific size matters. we used 14 each and that was the perfect amount
  • paint – we just used regular ole acrylic craft paint and it seemed to work just fine
  • darts – again, nothing special here. just sharp enough to pop a balloon
  • tacks – to hold the balloons onto the canvas
  • a tarp and something to lean the canvas against – you wouldn’t necessarily have to have a tarp of sorts, but it contained the mess nicely.
  • old clothes – the paint will splatter on to you…don’t wear a ball gown

Now down to the nitty gritty of what to do! We watched a few youtube videos which recommended mixing the paint with water and squirting it into the balloon, therefore blowing it up at the same time. We had no squirty water bottles and turkey basters don’t work the same. Trust me. So here’s our method.

  • pre-blow. pre-blow. pre-blow. I literally can’t emphasize enough the benefit of stretching out the water balloons with your fingers and then blowing them up first. It stretches it out enough to get more paint into the balloon and you don’t have to blow your guts out to blow the balloon up while it has paint in it.
  • one person stretches the balloon out some with their two fingers. the other person pulls it in a third direction and squirts in the paint. squirt a lot in. it’ll be way more than you think you need, but it’ll be worth it. (unless of course you don’t want a lot of paint. if you have “extra” balloons…do a test run or two. that’s how we ended up with this method and amount of paint) it’ll be enough paint to fill the whole roundy part of the balloon, but not so much that it starts to come up the neck of the balloon.  we did 14 balloons and 5 paint colors. so 3 balloons each for 4 colors and 2 of the 5th color. you do you though! *try to do this carefully without getting paint all over the neck or rim where you are going to put your lips
  • carefully blow the balloon up, tie off, and lay aside. here’s where you’ll be thankful you put in the amount of paint you did because at this point…it looks like there’s no paint in the balloon. (it is still there. don’t worry) *i would try to keep them grouped together by color so you can tack them on to the canvas in a nice way that all of one color isn’t on the “underneath” side of the painting or grouped together. again you do you!
  • repeat process until you have all the balloons paint filled and expanded!
  • take your thumbtacks and arrange the balloons on your canvas in whichever way you like. move anything you don’t want to get paint on out of the way. (no seriously, the paint flies everywhere!)
  • admire painting

We had an absolute blast doing this and I highly recommend trying it! It’s a fun project to have hanging on your wall and it’s a nice time spent with a friend! Besides, throwing darts and having things burst is a seriously good time.

Have you ever done any project or craft like this before?

another item checked off My Life Long List!


Cats and plants are kinda my thing. I love adventuring and exploring new places and things. I'm an artist of sorts that loves to create with my best friend. Go check out My Life Long List! :)

15 thoughts on “Balloon Dart Painting!!

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