How to Make a Cardboard Pinata

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How to Make a Cardboard Pinata
(scissors #2 image by Adam Borkowski from

Pinatas make for wonderful party decorations and party games. Pinatas tend to be exciting for children and adults and can be designed to fit any party decor theme. You can build a pinata easily from some common supplies you probably have around the house or items from a local craft store.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Cardboard
  • Glue
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Paper bags
  • Decorating materials (paint, crepe paper and markers)

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  1. 1

    Select a size and shape for your pinata. The more parts the pinata has, the more complicated the construction project. Simple round pinatas are the easiest to build, while animals with multiple limbs can be quite complicated. Either is doable but don't take on a complex design if you have little time or energy or this is your first pinata.

  2. 2

    Cut your design out of a piece of cardboard. If you are building an animal pinata, cut two identical pieces for each side of the animal. Connect the pieces with a small, long cardboard box. The sides can also be connected with a long, narrow strip of cardboard attached to itself so that it forms a circle. Glue the pieces together with hot glue and strengthen the connections with tape.

  3. 3

    Wrap the resulting form in paper (preferably from paper bags) to give it a rounded look. This should cover the spaces between the two sides of the pinata. Cut any additional parts such as ears or tails out of cardboard and attach them to the pinata with hot glue.

  4. 4

    Fill the pinata with candy or treats by cutting a small hole in its base. Pack it as tightly with candy as you can. You want the pinata to suddenly burst open when the bat strikes it, and the best way to ensure this is by filling the pinata to the brim with candy. Small pieces of candy will be more likely to fly out, creating a more dramatic effect. Cover the hole in the pinata with tape.

  5. 5

    Finish the pinata by decorating it with bright colours. Paint it in whatever colours you choose or try decorating it with crepe paper. Cut the paper into thin pieces and fold them on themselves to create a crazy, curly haired effect. Attach the strands to every part of the pinata, creating a shaggy look. Hang the pinata with rope and at the proper moment start swinging.

Tips and warnings

  • For a simple round pinata, cover an inflated balloon with papier-mache and then deflate the balloon when the paper is dry.
  • Never allow children to swing at a pinata unsupervised.

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