What’s more exciting than leaving a party with pieces of candy from a piñata? Taking home an actual piece of the piñata with candy inside! So cool, right? So, here’s the deal… basically, you make several mini piñatas, and when you arrange them strategically, you have a cool design to go with your party theme!
I used the same seven pieces to create a swan, a fish, and a horse. There are so many tangram patterns available that you will surely be able to find a good option for just about any party. You can make all of your pieces in the same color, or play around with a scheme to match your theme.
Another benefit to making this tabletop piñata: Nobody goes home with a black eye from a baseball bat. HUGE plus!
What You Need
- Cardboard (I used cereal and Clif bar boxes!)
- Party streamers
- Masking tape
- Double-sided tape
- Fringe scissors (optional)
- Internet attached to printer (not pictured)
- Copy machine for enlarging (not pictured)
- Small favors and candy
You will need to search Google for “tangram patterns”, and print the pattern of your choice. NOTE: Consider how many guests will attend the party, and how many pieces are in your design. If necessary, you can always make more than one set.
Using a copy machine, enlarge the tangram pattern to a size that will allow for shapes large enough to hold candy and small favors.
Cut out each piece of your pattern, and trace each shape TWICE on cardboard. Next, use your ruler to create a strip of cardboard that is at least ½” wide, and long enough to wrap around your shape. You may end up having to tape a couple of pieces together.
Line your strip of cardboard up with the edge of your shape, and tape the two pieces together. Once you reach the end of one side, bend the strip to continue taping the second edge. When you reach the final side of your shape, cut the strip of cardboard down to fit the side.
Before you begin taping the final side, cut off about 2/3 of the cardboard strip (see photo on bottom left, above). Tape the remaining 1/3 to the side, then in the opposite corner, tape the other strip to the edge where you started (see photo on bottom right, above). Tape about ½ of the remaining strip to the edge, then bend the remaining little piece out to create a small door for inserting your candy and small favors (see top, middle photo below). Do not tape the door to the side of the piñata.
Flip the shape to the other side, and lay the identical cardboard shape on top. Begin by taping it down over one corner, and then continue to tape all the way around the shape, until you reach your little door. Leaving it open, tape the remaining strip until your tape meets up again.
Your first piece is complete, and you may now repeat each step to make the remaining shapes in your tangram pattern!
Cut a fairly long piece of streamer, and then fold the piece in half the long way to make it skinny. Next, using fringe scissors, cut little slits into the unfolded edge of your streamers without cutting all the way to the folded edge.
Starting at the bottom of your shape, place a piece of double-stick tape all the way across, and place your streamer fringe on the tape. You may cut off any excess fringe, leaving a small amount hanging off the side. Continue applying tape and fringe all the way across your shape, layering the pieces, and working your way up to the top. Once the side is completely covered, you may flip the piece over and trim the fringe to make it even with your shape, giving it a nice straight edge.
Next, layer fringe on the sides of your shape starting at the bottom and layering to the top. Be sure to cover the door with fringe, but without taping it down. Finally, cover the bottom side with fringe, and move on to the next shape.
Stuff each piñata piece with the same amount of candy or small favors. (I like the idea of putting something tiny but extra special in the smallest piece, so the guest who receives it will be rewarded for accepting the small one!) Using your tangram pattern as a reference, arrange your pieces to make the piñata of your choice!
You could even add a horn for a unicorn party!
Party time! Happy crafting :)