5 Questions for balloon artist Misti Kauffman

041820.B.GFH.Misti Kauffman.jpeg
MIsti Kauffman, owner of Balloons By Misti. (submitted photo)

For 5 Questions this week the Herald speaks to Misti Kauffman, owner of Balloons By Misti, located in Columbia Mall at the No. 8 door.

Q: Please tell us a little bit about yourself and how you came to be a balloon artist.

A: I'm a mother of six, so I obviously have a lot of birthdays every year for my own children. I've always thought that balloons were a great way to decorate for their birthdays. Eleven years ago we lived in Alaska. At Halloween time, I went into this party store, and they had a balloon column with a giant spider on top. Halloween is my favorite holiday, so I decided I needed to make that spider. I went home and figured out how to make this giant balloon spider, and I thought it was really fun. I started volunteering to do things like decorating before a sporting event. I decorated for my kids’ end-of-the-year gymnastics banquet. Some of the moms said I should really do this as a business, and I said nobody is going to buy balloons and they said: “Oh, everybody will buy balloons from you, I guarantee it.”

Q: What kind of services do you offer at your shop?

A: So I do a lot of birthday arrangements, where a customer would call and say, “I am having a party for my son. He is turning 8, and he loves hockey,” or “My daughter loves dogs, and the color purple, what do you have?” So I would make something up that kind of incorporates that. I just kind of create personalized arrangements for birthdays and stuff. I do columns and arches for events.


Q: How has business been going with the pandemic?

A: It was worrisome at first, but I think people still want to celebrate and still want normalcy for their children, and birthdays are a big part of that. Even though they're not having parties, they still want a big balloon arrangement for their child, so that their child feels normal at their birthday. We've also done several (arrangements) for drive-by birthdays. Balloons are something that bring joy, and, in this time of uncertainty, people still want the happiness and brightness that they bring.

Q: What are some of your recent projects?

A: A lot of my big events have been canceled because of the no-gathering stuff. I've been mostly doing birthday parties, just smaller arrangements. I do have a lot of graduations actually that are still kind of on the books. Those people will probably still do balloons because they want that normalcy.

Q: What are you looking forward to in your business?

A: My daughter is 15, so I've been teaching her how to do some of the twisting things for flowers, and some of those simple arrangements. I was really excited; she did a display piece that we put out. I'm trying to teach someone else because I'm just one person. I think once things pick up, I'm going to be busier than what I could do by myself.

Adam Kurtz is the community editor for the Grand Forks Herald. He covers higher education and other topics in Grand Forks County and the city.

Kurtz joined the Herald in July 2019. He covered business and county government topics before covering higher education and some military topics.

Tips and story ideas are welcome. Get in touch with him at, or DM at @ByAdamKurtz.

Desk: 701-780-1110
What To Read Next
Get Local