Easy DIY piñata pro tips (and #allthetrends)

Does your party need a giant, fabulous centerpiece? You need a piñata. 

Are you looking for a really excellent kids activity? Also piñata.

Maybe you want a creative way to distribute yummy treats and also match your theme? Easy DIY piñata.

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Hallmark Designer and goddess with a glue gun Em B. showed us how to make piñatas (so you can hit up that article for the basic steps). Now she’s back from another workshop with some pro tips and more super-fun icons.

“The hardest part is deciding what you want to make,” she tells us. “So just do whatever you’re into right now—I’m that person who likes trendy things.”

Oh, we get it. #cactus #flamingo #cupcake #smores #morepineapple

Em’s DIY piñata pro tips

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Tissue paper + glue > paper mache

OK, maybe not greater than, but at least easier than. Throwing a party can be a lot of work. Making your piñata—whose sole purpose is to be hit with sticks until it falls apart—should be easy, fast, and not-too-messy. (Maybe Em’s best DIY piñata pro tip: Look for shortcuts.) The good news? We have plenty of gorgeous tissue papers to choose from.

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com


Keep the piñata shape simple

Especially for your first one, choose an easy, basic shape for the body of your piñata. You can add dimension with attachments: Check out the legs on Em’s flamingo and the top of the pineapple.

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Corrugate is your friend

Poster board, paper board, or chipboard is perfect for flat surfaces, but if you’re looking for curves, go with corrugated cardboard. It bends beautifully, so you can easily shape it and tape it in place.

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com

It’s OK to be ugly on the inside

Do whatever it takes to hold it together. Once you cover your creation with tissue paper, no one will see all the hot glue and masking tape it took to keep things together. And once your piñata breaks open, no one will care about anything but the candy.

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com


Put a face on it

Please note the adorableness of our s’more. Googly eyes come in all sizes, you guys.

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com


No need to get violent

If the idea of beating your piñata with sticks unnerves you—either because you don’t want to arm your party guests, because you like it and want to keep it, or because it’s looking at you with those googly eyes—there are alternatives.

Option 1: Make a game of it

Hang multiple ribbons from your piñata: Guests will each pull one, but only one will release the goodness. Before you cover everything with tissue paper, cut a square out of the bottom and cut slits in it—one for each length of ribbon. Slide them all in, then knot and tape one in place. Tape the square in place once you’ve added the candy.

Option 2: Make it romantic

Hang two ribbons and let a happy couple unleash the treats. Cut a double trap door in the bottom. Firmly attach a ribbon to each side, then add the candy and close it up.

Pinata Workshop | thinkmakeshareblog.com


Use the good treats

“Let’s be honest: Nobody wants the hard candy,” Em reminds us. She also points out that you can fill a piñata with anything. Any. Thing. She mentions a piñata her girlfriends made for her bachelorette party, but will not tell us what they filled it with.

You know what to do next: Show us your piñatas! And if you have any of your own DIY piñata pro tips, we’d love to hear them. Tag us @think.make.share on Instagram or follow us on Facebook.

We’ve got lots more party ideas where this came from! And check out our sister site for 100 kids party ideas. We’ve even got piñata greeting cards.


Leave a Comment

  1. 9.20.17 | Reply
    Kelly wrote:

    This is fabulous! Where did you find/buy the strips of corrugated cardboard? What width do you usually use?

  2. 9.24.17 | Reply
    Michelle wrote:

    Hi where do you buy this type of cardboard

  3. 12.13.17 | Reply
    Trudy Lemke wrote:

    I love all of your piñata ideas. I made my grandson a tractor for his 3rd Birthday, it turned out really cute. It is so much better to make your own. Pride in creating it yourself!
    Thank you,

    • 12.13.17 | Reply
      Think.Make.Share wrote:

      Could not agree more, Trudy! Thanks so much for your comment. Happy birthday to your grandson! 🙂

  4. 4.4.18 | Reply
    Selene FGarcia wrote:

    Hi! I just love this let me start off by asking WHAT KIND OF SCISSORS ARE THOSE? Please share! I need those in my life! Secondly, what kind of cardboard is that?

    • 4.5.18 | Reply
      Tobe R. wrote:

      LOL Let us introduce you to “fringe scissors,” Selene! We definitely recommend using corrugate for your rounded pieces. Regular cardboard works for your flat surfaces. Happy crafting!

  5. 7.3.18 | Reply
    Santa Ofelia wrote:

    Hola me encantó la piñata en forma de piña me gustaría saber cómo hacerla me podrían ayudar? Tengo una primita que le gustaría hacer su fiesta wahuaina y esa piñata le gustó mucho

  6. 11.19.18 | Reply
    YBakes wrote:

    It publication very instructive and the content simple and understand. Thank you.

  7. 11.24.18 | Reply
    Virgini wrote:

    Hi! Thank you very much for share your experience! Could you tell me please the information about the scisor that you use to cut crepe paper? I bought a similar one, but it dices no work well. Thank you in advance!

  8. 4.4.19 | Reply
    Hydi wrote:

    how do you make the cupcake?

    • 4.4.19 | Reply
      Trish B. wrote:

      The designers kind of freestyled the designs, so we don’t have specific step-by-step instructions for each. But you can get the basics from this post.

  9. 6.6.19 | Reply
    juan galindo wrote:

    Thank you for the pinata instructions

  10. 8.2.19 | Reply
    Csilla wrote:

    I’ve made a couple of pinatas before, but they came out too solid, the string broke before the pinata did, and we had some trouble hanging it back… it is hard to find a sweet spot because you don’t want it to fall apart at the first hit either – right? any tips on that? I like the idea of the trapdoor and the ribbons, but kids do enjoy the beating. lol

    • 8.5.19 | Reply
      Trish B. wrote:

      OK! We’ve asked around, and here are the answers we got:
      —Use regular masking tape–nothing stronger. Avoid duct tape and anything designed to hold forever.
      —Reinforce the hanger. Glue on an extra layer of cardboard, poke holes through both layers, and use wire or sturdy twine.
      —Stick with regular-strength cardboard–no need for heavy duty.
      —Keep the design simple. This should be a quick-n-easy project so there’s no heartbreak when it’s ultimately destroyed!

      Hope this helps!

  11. 1.15.20 | Reply
    Chantae wrote:

    Hi!! What kind of cardboard is that? I normally use corrugated cardboard from boxes and cut my own slits in them to make them bendable… there’s normally 2 flat pieces of cardboard on both sides with the corrugated part in the center. But this would make my life so much easier! It’s only flat on one side!!!

    • 1.16.20 | Reply
      Trish B. wrote:

      Magical, right? It’s called Single Face Corrugate (or Single Face Corrugated Cardboard) and it’s available in rolls! Amazon’s got it. 😀


  12. 3.11.20 | Reply
    Janie wilson wrote:

    I use newspaper strips and homemade glue, like paper mache in order for the piñata to last longer while hitting it, like up to 5 layers then I decorate it with the fringe crepe paper

  13. 3.14.20 | Reply
    greichel wrote:

    Hola me encanto su pag. Hay muchos consejos prácticos, pero quisiera saber si tienen como hacer una piñata en forma de huevo de DINOSAURIO con cartón.

    • 4.8.20 | Reply
      Kelly C. wrote:

      Hola Greichel! You might try using the same shape of cardboard as the pineapple. It will be easier to make with two flat surfaces, front and back!