Begin by preparing the balloon to be covered in paper mache. Tear newspaper into squares a couple inches in size and make a paper mache paste. Cover your work surface with newspaper, roll up your sleeves and be prepared to get messy! Dip your newspaper into the paste and attach them to the blown up balloon. Cover the whole thing in newspaper, leaving a gap around the balloon tie so you can remove it later. Apply three coats, leaving it to dry in between each coat.
Once the mache is dry, pop the balloon. Don’t be alarmed if it starts to implode, you can push it back into shape once the balloon is out. Cut a hole around the base and remove the popped balloon.
Next, paint the hot air balloon. Draw a line a third of the way round from the top of the balloon. Paint the two halves in contrasting colours – we went for blue and yellow. Apply several coats for even coverage.
Cut triangles of pink card to resemble bunting, about an inch high. Fold the top of each triangle to create a slight tab and glue between the blue and yellow on the balloon. The bunting should stick out slightly.
Using a star cutter, cut out lots of yellow stars. Glue onto the blue part of the balloon. Cover the painted parts of the balloon in gloss Mod Podge to seal in the stars and add a coat of shine.
Cut the handle off the small woven basket. To attach it to the balloon, take a needle and embroidery thread and feed it through each corner. Then use the needle to pierce the thread through the base of the balloon and secure with a knot. For a finishing touch, glue a bow onto the front of the basket.
To hang, pierce more embroidery thread through the top of the balloon from the inside and tie a knot.