Love is in the air

Our loony bal­loon wed­ding

Woman’s Day (NZ) - - What A Week -

New­ly­weds Donna Egan and Ja­son Cochrane are the first to ad­mit that their re­cent wed­ding prepa­ra­tions were blown out of pro­por­tion – lit­er­ally.

The Sun­shine Coast chil­dren’s en­ter­tain­ers and a crew of 100 vol­un­teers, in­clud­ing in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned bal­loon artists, spent 31 hours be­fore the big day blow­ing up, twist­ing and turn­ing a whop­ping 113,500 bal­loons to cre­ate the big­gest in­flat­able wed­ding the world has ever wit­nessed.

Pro­fes­sional bal­loon twis­ter Donna, who’s set two Guin­ness World Records for her colour­ful cre­ations, tells Woman’s Day she’d dreamed of walking down the aisle in a blown-up gown since she was a child.

“I started twist­ing bal­loons when I was work­ing with a ma­gi­cian at 13,” the 38-year-old tells. “I al­ways said if I ever mar­ried, it would be in a dress made from bal­loons.

“Then I de­cided the brides­maids should wear them too. Then I wanted a bal­loon cake and gar­den – it just kept on blow­ing up.”

About 150 guests flew in from across the globe to at­tend the pumped-up nup­tials, held over two bas­ket­ball courts at Aussie’s Noosa Leisure Cen­tre.

The mag­i­cal air-filled won­der­land in­cluded caves, tun­nels, wa­ter­falls, ex­otic an­i­mals, trees and flow­ers.

A bal­loon artist ar­rived es­pe­cially from Phoenix in the US to spend the 48 hours prior to the cer­e­mony cre­at­ing Donna’s corset­style gown and veil from around 500 white bal­loons. Pro­fes­sional artists also chipped in to cre­ate the four brides­maid dresses.

“I’ve made plenty of bal­loon dresses in my time, but I didn’t want the pres­sure of mak­ing my own wed­ding dress as it has to be made 48 hours be­fore­hand or it can de­flate,” ex­plains Donna. “It all turned out ab­so­lutely amaz­ing.”

And in a show of their unity, be­fore ex­chang­ing vows, the two cre­ated a bal­loon dog to­gether, us­ing one hand each.

Although they couldn’t cut their six-me­tre in­flat­able cake, Ja­son’s mother sur­prised them with a home­made cre­ation fea­tur­ing la­dy­birds, which they both have tat­tooed on their right arms.

While the cou­ple never in­tended to hold a record­break­ing event, 42-year-old Ja­son says they wouldn’t have it any other way.

“We blew up 72 bal­loons a minute in the two days be­fore­hand,” he laughs. “I’d rather not know what our bud­get blew out to be!”

Donna started plan­ning her big bal­loon wed­ding the minute her part­ner “popped” the ques­tion. Even Donna’s bri­dal corset was laced up with la­tex.

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