The goal for your first meeting as a committee should be to decide your float theme and slogan. Usually the school sets the overall theme for the parade, and it is up to each class to decide the specific theme for their float. Discuss your theme options (paying attention to how easy the theme would be to portray), what decorative elements would be required, and how it fits in with the overall parade theme.
After you have come up with several workable themes and slogans, take a committee vote to decide the final choice.
Before you go any further on your float planning, check out our exclusive Building a Parade Float book! It’s packed with tips, how-to’s, sketches, and more to help you with every stage of your building.
Float Slogan Ideas
Here are some possible slogans for a jungle float. This theme is a great choice if your mascot is a jungle animal (lion, tiger, panther, etc.) or if you’re using a jungle theme for your Homecoming Dance! Substitute your school’s mascot or your opponent’s mascot as needed.
• Welcome to the Jungle
• Give the Bulldogs Jungle Fever
• The Lions Are Kings of the Jungle!
• Send The Mustangs to the Jungle!
• M. H. S. Panthers Don’t Monkey Around!
• Hunting for Liberty High Warriors
• Hunting Down a Victory
• Swinging to a Victory
• Trap the Cardinals
• It’s a Jungle Out There
Once your theme and slogan are decided, brainstorm on the colors and decorative elements that would fit this theme. Here are some ideas for your jungle float.
Float Color Ideas
• Yellow or Gold
• School Colors
Float Decoration Ideas
• “King of the Jungle” Throne
• Palm Trees
• Vines and Grass
• Safari Balloons
PLANNING YOUR FLOAT
One you have these ideas, the next thing you will want to do is make a sketch of your float. This will help you when you go to build it! Include the placement of your slogan, colors, and decorations. For instance, if you want the fringe to be green and the trim to be gold, label this on your sketch.
MEASURING MATERIALS FOR THE TRAILER
Before you can build your float, you need to order float materials! Here is an estimate of how much material is required to cover various standard-size floats. The measurements will give you plenty of material to cover the deck and sides of your trailer.
2’ High x 18’ Long x 8′ Wide Trailer
Three 6-yard rolls of Floral Sheeting (for deck)
One 18-yard roll of Floral Sheeting (for sides)
Three 3-pound bags of Scatter Grass (may replace floral sheeting on deck)
Six 10-foot rolls of Fringe (for perimeter)
Two 48-foot rolls of Festooning
2’ High x 24’ Long x 10’ Wide Trailer
Four 8-yard rolls of Floral Sheeting (for deck)
One 23-yard roll of Floral Sheeting (for sides)
Five 3-pound bags of Scatter Grass (may replace floral sheeting on deck)
Seven 10-foot rolls of Fringe (for perimeter)
Two 48-foot rolls of Festooning
2’ High x 32’ Long x 10’ Wide Trailer
Four 11-yard rolls of Floral Sheeting (for deck)
One 28-yard roll of Floral Sheeting (for sides)
Seven 3-pound bags of Scatter Grass (may replace floral sheeting on deck)
Nine 10-foot rolls of Fringe (for perimeter)
Two 48-foot rolls of Festooning
Float Materials Per Square Foot
If your float doesn’t fit the particular dimensions in the examples above, don’t worry! Here is an approximate break-down of the materials you will need for each square foot.
Per Square Foot
.83 feet of Floral Sheeting
.07 lbs. of Scatter Grass (optional)
.46 feet of Fringe
.74 feet of Festooning
Simply take these measurements and multiply them by the square footage of your trailer. (To determine the square footage, simply multiple the length by the width.) The result is how much material you will need. For example, if your trailer is 200 square feet, you will need 92 feet of fringe (.46 x 200 = 92).
COVERING THE TRAILER
Once you have received your float materials, it’s time to get to work! Below are some steps to follow when covering your float trailer.
1. Cover the deck and sides of the float completely with floral sheeting. (Scatter grass or grass mats can be used on the deck instead of floral sheeting.) For your jungle float, we suggest using scatter grass or grass mats on the deck and green floral sheeting for the sides.
2. Attach fringe to the bottom of each side of the trailer. This will cover the wheels and make the float look like it is truly “floating.” We recommend brown vinyl fringe for a jungle theme.
3. Edge the sides of your float with festooning. Attach the festooning between the floral sheeting on the deck and the floral sheeting on the sides of the trailer. This accents the float’s straight line while creating an appealing color contrast. You can also use the festooning between the floral sheeting on the sides and the fringe. Gold metallic or yellow vinyl festooning would look great on a jungle float.
4. Display your slogan or school name with styrofoam letters. The letters usually look best when attached to the floral sheeting on the sides of the trailer. You can also add them to other areas of your float. Keep the letters white or paint them with your school colors!
CREATING DECORATIONS FOR YOUR FLOAT
Decorations are an essential part of any float. We’ve given you some basic ideas for your jungle float – but what’s the next step? Here are some suggestions for actually creating your jungle decorations!
• Use a “King of the Jungle” throne in the middle of your float. Your mascot can sit on it during the parade. We offer a sturdy throne that will save you the hassle of trying to build one. Although it is a royal throne, it can be easily transformed into a jungle throne! Simply drape it with palm leaf gossamer and green festooning (to look like vines).
• Order a royal kings crown for your mascot to wear while seated on the throne. (You can even add a royal robe as well!) Recruit a student to dress up and pose as your opponent’s mascot. The opponent’s mascot can be bowing down to your mascot or fanning him with a large palm leaf.
• Create several palm trees out of chicken wire (available at hardware stores) and tissue pomps. Each palm tree should measure approximately 6’ high x 10” in diameter. Make a tube using 6’ high x 20” wide chicken wire (available at a hardware store), attach the wire to a vertical wood beam, and stuff it with brown tissue pomps. Tissue pomps can go in every other opening. Attach each tree to a wooden base for support. To make the palm leaves, attach strong (but thin) wire to the top of each tube and hang green fringe from the wires. Place a tree on either side of the throne.
• Make vines from green festooning. Drape the vines around the palm trees and throne.
• Inflate lots of safari balloons with helium and tie them together in bunches with curling ribbon. Make four separate bunches of balloons and place one bunch on each corner of your float.
• Use scatter grass on the deck of your float instead of traditional float sheeting. This will give your float more of an authentic jungle look!
• Add monkeys, butterflies, tigers, and other jungle creatures to your float, if desired. These elements can be made from chicken wire and tissue pomps or painted plywood.
Check out all of our float building tips!