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How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me)

Beanie turned four on Tuesday. By 8 a.m., straight after blowing the candles on her bowl of birthday porridge, she had already decided it was the best birthday ever! That set the tone for the day. It was a very happy day indeed. At playgroup, all the children sang “Happy Birthday” to her. Lunch in the park was followed by pre-school, where she was given a book and a card. After school, we went to the park again with friends (and sweets). Hubby came home earlier than usual and she opened our little presents with excitement. We had dinner in front of Despicable Me, much to her delight. More cake and she went to bed. What a brilliant day for my little girl!

Her birthday party with friends is on Saturday. The kids started talking about having a piñata last week and for some crazy reason, I said maybe we could try and make a papier-mâché one. I know, I know, I can hear you shout at your screen: “Stop there, Mel, don’t even get started; you will regret it!”

It was one of those times when I opened my mouth before I gave myself the chance to think. What on earth crossed my mind when I said that? I have no idea. My last experience of wet newspaper pieces and floury water was when I was about eight. I remember it well: my papier-mâché fruit bowl took ages to make and never dried. That was almost as unsuccessful as my attempts at pottery (a story for another day!).

I had never made a piñata. It is comforting to stick to what you know rather than take risks, but at the end of the day, we had nothing to lose. It could be an enjoyable activity, and if it looked awful, we would just bash it at home. I had a look online, but could not find a tutorial that looked straightforward enough and did not require spending money.

I do have other things to do and even though I wanted to please the children, there was no way I would spend hours and hours making a papier-mâché Minion that would get destroyed in less than ten minutes. It was also going to be a free piñata!

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - materials to get started

On Thursday, Crevette (6 years 1 month) and Beanie (4 years) blew a couple of balloons we had at home.

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Inflating Balloons

I used a short piece ribbon to keep them together.

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Balloons Attached Together

I then taped together four pieces of card (lengthwise) to make a tube shape around the two balloons. Easy enough!

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Card around Balloons

On Saturday afternoon, Beanie and I got the papier-mâché mixture (1 cup flour and 1 ½ cup water) ready. My little lady loved it! She is keen on messy play, squidgy stuff and generally getting dirty.

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Mixture

After ripping a couple of old newspapers into rough squares, we placed our Minion shape in a large bowl.

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Newspaper Bits

We then started dipping the pieces in our mixture and sticking them all over what would hopefully become a piñata. Crevette gave up after a couple of minutes, telling me he did not like getting dirty. The look I gave him made it very clear I was not myself a fan of sticky flour mixture all over myself, my clothes and my hair! A lot of muttering followed…

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Getting Started

It was really wet as I put on at least two layers to save time, so we used a hairdryer to take some of the moisture off before leaving it to dry.

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Hair Dryer

I turned the piñata around in the bowl on Sunday to start covering the other side. Another two layers were added (on my own) that morning (tut, tut, tut).

Once it was completely dry, I burst the balloons with a needle, cut an opening in the bottom so I could put my hand through it and add a piece of ribbon at the top (for hanging later).

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Opening it

We filled our shell with torn pieces of blue and yellow tissue paper as well as sweets, used masking tape to close the piñata and added a couple of layers of papier-mâché.

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Stuffing it

The kids used their dad’s paintbrushes to paint it yellow after school on Monday.

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Painting

It did not look promising I have to say and you could still see the newspaper underneath. I added a couple of layers of yellow paint on Monday night and Tuesday morning.

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Painting again

Once we had a base for our minion, I asked Beanie what kind of minion she wanted, and she requested a one-eyed minion. We went for Carl.


What you need next:

Printables for goggles (I made ours bigger) and ‘G’ can be found here.

Card in these colours: black, blue, yellow

PVA glue

Black pen

2 black buttons


Black thread (I only had brown)

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - What you Need to Finish

On Wednesday, after cutting round the eye, I cut a couple of strips of black card to make sure it went round the head. It is a good idea not to stick it yet (I made that mistake), but place it to know where the overalls should go.

I quickly traced the outline of overalls and painted them blue.

I then added the eye, traced the mouth, stuck the buttons, ‘G’ badge, hair, arms and legs – 4 x 4cm strips of the width of the yellow card: 4 cm strips – accordion, then black hands (3 fingers), black shoes. Attach your piñata to a broomstick and have fun!

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me) - Carl & Friends

My honest opinion: if you are really into experimenting, arts and crafts as well as messy play, by all means go for it! If not, buy a ready-made piñata!

Here is a visual summary:

How to Make a Minion Piñata (Despicable Me)


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The Reading Residence



  1. 26/09/2014 / 6:16 am

    OMG! That is amazing! You are a very talented pinata maker!!! Very impressive! x

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 11:46 pm

      Not bad for a first attempt, is it? Now I am hoping it breaks easily enough tomorrow.

    • Lori Packer
      03/12/2016 / 11:46 pm

      I started the same way you did, just put both hands in forward so to speak. If children are not helping you ladies, the only thing I would highly recommend is the liquid fabric starch. It seems a bit more expensive, but in the long run, it lasts a very long time, goes on smooth, you use less coats of it, be careful, I made one that would not break one time due to having too much time, I am older and no kids at home….it’s just so worth it….

      • Mel
        04/12/2016 / 9:22 pm

        Oh that sounds really good. I would look into it if the children were not into helping in the first stages (bless them!).

  2. adeline
    26/09/2014 / 8:09 am

    je lâche l’affaire, t’es trop forte!!!!!!!! je remballe mes ballons de pâques…
    Par contre j’ai cherché ce que veux dire despicable et j’ai trouvé “méprisable” du coup je ne comprends pas bien le sens avec fête d’anniversaire, i need a lesson Miss!!!!!

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 8:39 am

      Tu me fais rire, toi! Despicable Me, c’est le titre anglais de Moi, Moche et Méchant!

  3. 26/09/2014 / 9:43 am

    Brilliant idea! Although my soon to be 4 year old wouldn’t like the sound of a balloon bursting bless him. I’m hoping he doesn’t realise he can ask for a party and I’ll get away with minimal party type preparations!!

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 11:38 pm

      I like having a theme. It makes things a bit easier for planning the party (in my world anyway, ha ha!).

  4. adeline
    26/09/2014 / 10:22 am

    j’avais vu les mignons mais je n’avais pas fait le rapprochement….merci madame la prof!

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 11:14 am


    • Mel
      28/09/2014 / 11:19 am

      T’es drôle, toi!

  5. Mummy Tries
    26/09/2014 / 11:32 am

    How on earth have you made something so intricate look so easy? You are one talented mumma that’s for sure lovely! Sounds like a fab birthday for your little Beanie xxx #WotW

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 12:34 pm

      It really is not that complicated. I tend to have ideas, but with zero artistic talent, I have to be creative to make my “artwork” look decent! I have to say I am pleased with the Minion, though. I will still enjoy seeing the kids destroy it tomorrow!

  6. Stephanie Robinson
    26/09/2014 / 12:57 pm

    Wow – double the fun! Making it and destroying it! Have a fab time!

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 11:05 pm

      Thanks Stephanie, we will. I am secretly hoping the kids struggle to break it so I can have a go!

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 10:57 pm

      Thanks Kirsty. We always have little projects on the cards around here!

  7. 26/09/2014 / 1:47 pm

    Wow! I would buy one, I’d definitely buy one! This looks brilliant, you should be so proud! I’m glad the birthday went well and hope the party is as much of a success. Thanks for sharing with #WotW

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 1:57 pm

      I would not blame you! We are all very excited about the party. I had better start getting things organised!

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 8:03 pm

      Nah! It is all part of the fun!

  8. Ce
    26/09/2014 / 6:46 pm

    You rock as usual!!!!! Don’t know how you do it!! Can’t wait to see it;-)

    • Mel
      26/09/2014 / 8:04 pm

      Well, you might have to bash it tomorrow if the little ones are struggling!

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