How to Build a Parade Float!
It’s not as hard as it looks!
Where to Begin
The first step in planning any
float is to thoroughly read all of the information concerning entry fees, deadlines,
transporting the float, parade rules and regulations and most importantly, safety
requirements. If your float is for a specific event, check with the Parade Chairman for
the theme so that you can decide on an appropriate design for your float.
Designing Your Float
The next step is to build or borrow
a float trailer (see sketches below) which will determine the size of your float. Floats
have been built on trailers, jeeps, cars, even boats and barges. However, most floats are
built on trailers that are 8 feet or less in width to allow for ease of travel to and from
the parade route.
Have a meeting with your
float builders so that everyone can agree on a design. You can then split up the
work: one group can be in charge of props or costumes
that will be used on the float. Another group can be in charge of the lettering
that will be displayed on the float for your organization. Another group can be
in charge of the frame-work used underneath the decorating materials. Building a float is
a team effort, so make sure everyone understands their part in building the float.
A great way to decide on a theme
for your float is to start with the theme of the parade and use symbols associated
theme. For example, if your parade has a Christmas theme, start with basic ideas of what
Christmas is best associated with:
1) Christmas trees (you could have
a Christmas tree with flame-retardant flocking on your float as a prop)
2) Christmas gifts (large presents
on your float make great props and are easy to create!)
3) Colors of red, green, white
(helps with choosing the colors of your float)
4) Winter time/snow (you can use
flame resistant white cotton-like materials, such as upholstery stuffing, to simulate snow. These are available at your local fabric
5) Family dinner (a table on the
float portraying a family gathered at Christmas dinner)
6) Santa’s workshop
(Children can be dressed as elves)
Get everyone involved who is
building the floats’ input on how the float should look. Creativity is at its best when
everyone has a say at what the float should look like. Write down all of the ideas
on a chalk-board or large presentation paper and agree to a design. Creativity is
sometimes the most difficult part of building the float, but it is also the most fun!
You can visit our
float decorating products page for fast, easy to use colorful
float decorating materials. Also, you can check out your local hardware store to get
paint, indoor/outdoor coverings lattice, etc., and other raw materials to use as
Building your float
The links below show you how to
build a basic parade float using Valley Decorating’s Float Products. Our products make
float building fast, easy, and comparatively priced to other decorating avenues. Click on
the images below to see how easy it is to build an award winning parade float using Valley
Decorating Float Products.
|If you have a
low-boy trailer, click on the picture.
|If you have a
hay-trailer, click on the picture.
Float Decorations | Float
Idea Page | How to Build a Float |
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Materials Estimate Page
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