Love is in the air
Our loony balloon wedding
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.