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How to Build a Float Home » Programs & Events » Homecoming » How to build a float

Step 1 - Trailer

  • Secure a flatbed trailer.
  • Secure a vehicle to tow your float.

Step 2 - Float Base

  • Measure the chicken wire to cover each side of the flatbed. These pieces will eventually be used to make a drape around the flatbed (good for advertising your organization or your sponsors).
  • Fasten the chicken wire to the edge of the flatbed with nails or staple gun.

Step 3 - Float Base

  • Cut newspapers into 6" x 6" squares or into long strips.
  • Blend flour and water together to make paper mache material.
  • Dip newspaper pieces into paper mache and paste onto chicken wire in 2-3 layers.
  • Allow it to dry, then spray paint and decorate.

Step 4 - Stuff on the Float

  • Build the frame(s) of the objects(s) you want to be on the float (use wood, chicken wire, etc).
  • Attach chicken wire to "fill out" object or to add detail.
  • You can use cloth, paper mache, paint or streamers to decorate frame.
  • Make sure the frame is securely fastened to the base of the flatbed.

Step 5 - More stuff on the Float

  • Decorate and "fill out" the rest of the float. Fill it with spirited people.


  • Build a frame of an object or a design with wood, then elaborate using chicken wire. Use paper mache to cover the chicken wire, then spray paint or otherwise decorate the paper mache with your design or logos.
  • Use Streamers or chicken wire to decorate the edges of the flatbed.
  • Use balloons, but not too many. A balloon arch can look good.
  • Use original decorations (i.e., umbrellas, music, movement, etc.).
View photos from last year
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