When we feel like letting the good times roll, we turn to … a toilet paper roll. Yes, the empty roll sitting in your bathroom that won’t change itself and probably would never be replaced if it weren’t for you, can be transformed into the ultimate party favor: a confetti popper. Instead of throwing them away, keep a few handy for celebrating birthdays, ace report cards, or the next time the kids make their beds without being told.
1 Tie an unfilled balloon (as if you had just filled it with air), then cut off the other side.
2 Slide the cut-off end of the balloon over the toilet paper roll and secure with duct tape.
3 Cover the other open end of the roll with tissue paper and secure the tissue paper with a rubber band. Simply hold the balloon in place while pulling on it to make your confetti fly.
4 If you’re feeling ambitious, make your own confetti. Take a hole-puncher (or scissors) to multi-colored construction paper, wrapping paper, or metallic gift tissue. The more colors and textures you use, the more dramatic the explosion. Or consider cutting them into the shape of flower petals and yelling “ka-bloom!” You’ll soon find the next best thing to fireworks in the sky is confetti in the living room! Warning: Don’t litter with glitter. Repeat: DO NOT use glitter or you may spend the next few weeks finding it everywhere you don’t want to find it.
The Sci Behind the DIY
The secret sauce in this small but powerful party starter is the balloon. When you draw back the balloon, you’re creating potential energy inside the popper. The amount of potential energy increases as you stretch the rubbery launcher. Releasing the balloon converts the potential energy inside into kinetic energy that propels these poppers into action. Higher potential energy means higher kinetic energy, which means you’ll have even more reason to celebrate when that energy runs out and the kids are asleep by 9:00 pm.