Make the piñata to suit your taste or the occasion, fill it up with sweets and hang it in the backyard or in the middle of your living room. Then comes the fun part for children!
What you need:
1 large balloon
white glue – wood glue
newspapers, cut into smaller pieces
2 plastic bowls
a small amount of crepe paper
a cord or a rope (to hang the piñata)
candies and small chocolate bars (to fill the piñata)
a wooden or bamboo stick (80-100 cm in length) to crack the piñata
Inflate and tie the balloon, place it vertically in a plastic bowl (e.g. use a plastic cream container).
In a separate bowl, combine the glue with a small amount of water to get a thick liquid.
Dip the newspaper pieces (one by one) into the diluted glue. Remove the excess glue with your fingers and glue to the balloon. (No need to worry, this type of glue washes easily under warm running water!)
Repeat until the entire balloon is covered with paper mache, except for the knot at the bottom – glue the pieces around it, not over it!
Leave to dry.
When the first layer is dry, apply the second layer in the same manner.
You need at least 3 layers to make your piñata solid. It should be neither too soft (lest it should wrinkle once the balloon is removed, plus it needs to withstand the weight of the sweets inside it) nor too strong, as children will not be able to crack it.
It is important for each layer to dry completely before applying the next one.
Once the paper mache is dry, carefully cut off the knot and pull out the balloon. If the knot was at the bottom end of the piñata, you’ll have to close the hole by applying 3 layers of paper mache and wait for each to dry. If the knot was at the top end, leave and use the opening for inserting the cord.
Once dry, colour the piñata to your liking. You can draw a face or just apply various colours. Leave the paint to dry.
Here comes the tricky part: Using a scalpel, make an opening large enough to fill the piñata with sweets and confetti.
Insert one end of the cord through the opening and tie into a knot.
When everything is inserted, return the cut-out piece to close the opening (the cord knot should remain inside) and apply 2 more layers of papers around the cutting point and around the cord. It is highly important for this part of the piñata to be strong.
When the glue is dry, colour that part of the piñata and the applied pieces of paper.
Add hair or crepe paper strings, crepe ears, paper hats, etc. (optional).
Hang the piñata on a tree in your backyard, on a hook in your ceiling or door frame, invite the children, give them a wooden stick (at least 80-100 cm long) and their fun can begin.
When the piñata cracks and the sweets get scattered, you can join in the “scramble for treats and have a whacking good time.”
NOTE: Instead of wood glue, you can use a thick mixture of flour and water, and instead of wooden sticks, you can use a plastic or wooden broom stick. 🙂