Step 1: You will need
- a 260Q balloon
- a professional pump
- permanent marker pens
Step 2: Blow up
Place the lip of a 260Q balloon over the nib of your pump. Inflate the balloon and leave about a 7 inch tail.
Step 3: Tie off
Loop the lip around your fingers, then tuck it through the loop. Gently pull and release to form the knot.
Step 4: Loop and twist
Bend the balloon around to form a loop leaving a few inches at the tail end and a good length for the handle of the banjo. Squeeze these ends together and twist the loop around several times to secure it.
Step 5: Secure the handle
Squeeze and twist the tail end to form a small bubble at the base of the handle. Then pinch twist this bubble into place bringing the tail end around to the other side of the handle. See 'How to Start Balloon Modelling' for more information on pinch twists. Now you have the bubble on one side of the handle and the tail end on the other. Next squeeze and twist the tail end to form a second bubble - again pinch twist this into place on the opposite side of the handle. Finally move the tail end around until you pull it into the centre of the large loop.
Step 6: Make the bubble
To create the banjo's string squeeze the air in the tail end right down to the bottom of the balloon. This can be tricky but continue to squeeze gently and eventually the air will move down.
Step 7: Make the string taut
Hold the bubble and begin to turn it. Make sure not to let go at any point. Keep twisting the string so it becomes less floppy. Once it is completely taut you can pluck the string to play a note.
Step 8: Twist into place
Pull the bubble at the end over the balloon in the middle of the loop and twist it under the string to one side. Then bring it round the balloon again and to the other side of the string. This will hold it in place
Step 9: Add strings
Use a permanent marker to draw three more strings on the neck of the banjo.
Step 10: Play!
Pluck the string of the banjo to play it. You can change the note by squashing the end of the banjo against you to shorten the string.