Hearts are the universal symbol for love, so of course you see lots of heart designs around Valentine’s Day. To channel this heart-filled inspiration, we designed this fabulous DIY heart shaped piñata. You can use this for February 14th celebrations or as a stunning piece of wedding decor. We especially love this project because it shows off the incredible versatility of papercrafting – papier mache sculpting plus gorgeous crepe equals crafty goodness!
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- Wheat Paste
- Low Temperature Hot Glue Gun
- Heart Shaped Balloon
- Red Crepe Paper [Floristic: Peppermint, Holly Berry, Bordeaux; three rolls of each color]
- 18 Gauge Wire (to hang the piñata)
- Gather tools and materials listed above.
- Blow up your balloon. Cover your work surface with butcher paper and set the balloon on top.
- Mix your wheat paste with water in a separate container, according to instructions for your specific paste.
- Tear newspaper into 1.5-inch wide strips.
- Dip each strip of newspaper into the wheat paste, removing excess by sliding two fingers from the top to the bottom. Place the newspaper strips over the balloon, moving in one direction and overlapping the strips by about a half-inch. Then, add a second layer on top of the first, moving in the opposite direction. Flip the balloon over and repeat until the entire balloon is covered.
- Tie a string around the bottom of the balloon and hang it upside down to dry overnight.
- While you are waiting for the newspaper to dry, print the PDF template and cut crepe pieces according to pattern. If using Floristic crepe, cut 160 petals of Bordeaux, 180 of Holly Berry, and 180 of Peppermint.
Gently stretch the outer edges of the petals to create a ruffled look.
- After the newspaper is dry, pop the balloon with scissors and cut small flap at the top of the heart, big enough to stick your hand through. Remove the balloon and fill the piñata with candy or goodies.
- Papier mache the top flap and bottom opening shut with more newspaper.
- When the papier mache is completely dry, poke two holes at the top with your wire, thread it through and create a circular handle for the piñata.
- Roughly mark the piñata in thirds to use as a guide for your ombre design.
- Start gluing petals at the bottom of the heart and work your way up, staggering the petals as you go. Switch colors where you marked and continue until the heart is covered.
We found our heart shaped balloon on Amazon and then used an air pump to blow it up. When you are adding the newspaper strips, be sure that you are tearing them rather than cutting them – this will help the newspaper mold together better. Dip the strips into the wheat paste so that they are coated, but not necessarily dripping. You want the newspaper to be able to dry as quickly as possible. We made our heart with an ombre design using three shades of red, but feel free to customize your heart shaped piñata with any colors that you’d like. If you are creating an ombre, we recommend putting the darkest color on the bottom of the heart. When marking the heart into thirds, make the bottom section a bit bigger. Once you add the crepe petals, the overlapping will even the sections out.
For our specific balloon size, we used 3 rolls of each shade of red. If you are a newbie to crafting with crepe, we recommend watching our Crepe Paper 101 video, especially for guidance on stretching your petals. After you glue the crepe pieces onto the heart, the petals will stick out a bit around the curves. At the end of the project, you can go back and tack some of those petals down or fill in any blank spots to cover any newspaper that is still visible.
Run With It
Voila! A gorgeous, homemade heart shaped piñata that you can use for a Valentine’s Day event, bridal shower or wedding. For more Valentine’s Day ideas, don’t miss our collection of Valentine’s Day classroom decor projects. Browse through our wedding DIYs for inspiration. Follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter to stay updated on the latest and greatest, or head over to our membership page to start crafting with us. Always feel free to give us your project requests and suggestions in the comments below, or share your project photos using #DIYDreamingWithLia. Enjoy! ~ Lia & Team