Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Take a Break: Make Bubbles

My good friend’s birthday was this past weekend and I decided bubbles were in order. However, I didn’t have any wands or bubble mixture, or the time to get either. However, I remembered my mother making us a bubble mixture out of dish washing liquid (Joy, Dawn) and water. She didn’t add glycerin or white corn syrup, but the ratio always seemed to be a lot of water to a little bit of the washing liquid.

I should mention that years ago, at a music festival, I saw I Tom Noddy of Bubble Magic fame make a square bubble. I was hooked. I spent quite a bit of time working at duplicating his tricks, but gave it up since it involved cigarette smoke. Fortunately, Noddy is still at it but has figured out a way to use a tiny fog machine to give the same effect.

But back to Saturday’s bubble experiments. It was time for a bit of R & D. I took a plastic lid and squirted a little dish detergent (do not use dishwasher liquid as that is designed to decrease bubbles) and a lot of water. The ratio is usually around 1 part liquid to 15 parts water, but I didn’t measure.

All I needed was the wand. I found the coolest one to make from two sheets of paper at the Bubble Town website. It’s basically making a tube-looks like a mini horn of plenty, which I tapped off with a sliver of duct tape. Most people would use regular tape, but I have more duct tape in my office than the other stuff. Well, if you must know, I make a lot of stuff out of duct tape.

I dipped my “wand” into the mixture and blew the biggest bubble I’ve ever made. The downside of the paper wand is that you do have to let it dry. However, try other items you might have in the kitchen, like a funnel, an empty juice can or yogurt container cut into rings (make sure the edge is smooth), cookie cutter, etc.

The Bubble Town website mentioned that if you let the bubble mixture sit, it gets better over time. I’ve been trying it at various points for the last forty eight hours and I discovered two things, you can’t blow bubbles and be angry or ticked off about anything-it’ll make you laugh, and the longer the mixture sits the better it gets. I finally washed my lid on Monday, having made the biggest and best bubble of all. My number one fan, our dog, loved it and of course needed to “nose it.” You can imagine what followed.

You can add food coloring to the solution and make colored bubbles. The downside is that it will leave a stain when it pops. However, you could lay down a piece of paper, blow colored bubbles, and end up with a cool art project.

So create your own bubble magic today using what you have around the house.

Homemade Bubble Solutions: Lots of different recipes to try.

Antigravity Bubbles (video)

Long Lasting Bubbles: This looks like a very cool project, but I haven’t tried it yet.

Bubble wands out of Pipe Cleaners

Bubble Magic

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