Last year a very dear friend of ours had her big 40th birthday. We went all out to make it as special as we possibly could. Naturally, since she is a Slytherin (as am I and my fella), we had to make it a Slytherin common room theme. We rented a cabin and did it up royally. We had wall hangers with little Hogwarts theme touches everywhere. We even had a piñata and balloons. She wanted to go all out and we did not disappoint.
Hogwarts Party Supplies
This week she is celebrating her first consecutive year of being 40 again. In tribute to her, I’m going to review one of the ways we made her birthday a blast!
Well…I won’t go into all the details! I picked out just a couple of little projects we came up with that I am particularly proud of.
For months we schemed and plotted this extravaganza. While unrelentingly hunting for decorations, I saw the piñatas and thought, “what 40 year old wouldn’t want one, right?”
I asked her, “hey, do you want a piñata?”, And she said
“yes of course I do! And I want it Potter themed.” Gee, who
would have guessed?
This was before they had the fancy ones in the stores, That meant I had to make one. I would have anyway as I like to challenge myself with new crafting skills.
But what kind to make?
What to fill it with?
And how to destroy…I mean, open it?
Answers to follow:
I spent a good .25 seconds before it hit me, I would make her a Hogwarts Acceptance Letter themed pinata. As far as I know, she never got her Hogwarts letter and 40 seemed like as good a time as any, I figured a rectangle would be a really basic shape that I could manage without too many issues. Of course, I never made one before and I hemmed and hawed, about which direction to go. I considered the possibilities; Papier-mâché or a cardboard base. After trial and error with the papier-mâché (it kept shrinking and just not looking like I wanted) I tossed it and went the easy route. I had tons to get together and figured to cut corners with this, would allow time to go bananas elsewhere.
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What to fill it with? OH, believe you me I could have been rather raunchy indeed, I will admit but we kept it civil and more importantly FUN!
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If I was to do this again, I’d buy these and fill them myself from my home bar
Well, I decided upon those little mini nipper liquor bottles like that they have at registers at the liquor stores…of course! But, they had to be the PLASTIC ONES. Otherwise they might break during the destruction…I mean, opening! I spent a good few months waiting for different types to be on sale at my local stores. Yes, there was a total of 40! But what else could I add in there? We didn’t want candy, OK not a lot of candy, because we try to be good…NOT! OK, we were bad! I admit nothing else though. I bought one of those huge 100 ct packs of mini Slim Jims, some mini fruit snacks, mini Snickers/Twix/Butterfingers and I think some taffy. Oh yeah! And some little party poppers, glow sticks, water guns, and of course some rubber ducks!
Why? Because we are adults and we do what we want! 🙂
And how to destroy the piñata…I mean, open it?
I made a beater bat out of a thrift store baseball bat. Yes, a Quidditch beater bat. I painted it to look like one. Method to follow.
Material I used for making the piñata.
a large cake box from the baking section of the craft store,
scotch tape (“cello tape” for those in the UK)
glue stick I prefer the Purple one, it allows you to see where you have the glue
a wax seal stamp (I used one of my Hogwarts themed ones)
10 gauge wire (for hanging option only)
First, I folded the cake box to hold its shape, then taped the box to seal up and hold all the goodies. Then, I took the piece of card stock and printed the addressee and delivery information. Note: The address in the photo is not her address; it was the address of the cabin we rented, so I don’t have an issue sharing it. You have a few other options, you could hand print, use your printer, or even set up the trusty ol’ Cricut with a green pen, if you have that option. I taped the card stock over the plastic opening of the cake box. Once that was in place to my liking, I used the glue stick to glue down the tissue paper.
I took a long strip of the tissue paper, I made sure it was long enough to wrap along the front of the cake box and one full side. Then I used the glue stick on the top half of the strip of paper, leaving a flap to cut into strips. Then I attached it to the top edge of the box and cut the fringe all along the strip (see photo). I repeated the process all the way around the box (all 4 sides) leaving a gap over the label. Be sure to cover all the box, being careful on the sides/edges. And you are almost done once.
When you have that step done, you need to cut a hole for the goodies to be inserted. You basically leave a flap in the top edge to to fill it up. Or, you could be smarter than I was and fill the box before you tape it up and apply the tissue paper. However, cutting a feeding hole will weaken the box so it doesn’t take as much pressure when hitting it with the beater bat.
Since this is a lightweight cake box, it should not need a lot of force to open the box. We didn’t hang this piñata; we just set it on the floor and whacked it with the Beater bat. If I were to make this a hanging piñata, I would probably buy a second slightly smaller cake box to insert inside the large cake box (prior to adding the decor on the outside) I would put all the goodies inside the smaller box, taping it in place. Then I would insert the smaller box inside the large box BEFORE sealing the larger box and adding the tissue paper, I would also puncture a hole on each top side corner of the box. Then I could run a length of wire through each hole so it is inside the larger box, leaving the end pieces coming out the top side. Be sure to leave the wire ends long enough to connect, creating a hanging loop.
On the back side, I melted some sealing wax and used my Hogwarts crest stamp to seal it. I added an extra flourish of a Harry Potter stamp scan, sized and cut out on sticker paper to “mail the letter”. By the time I was done with this project, it would have taken an entire fleet of owls to deliver it!
Materials I used to make the Beater bat
Baseball bat I used a wood one, I believe it was a tee-ball bat
black and tan acrylic paint
paint cleaning supplies
black marker (Sharpie)
I printed a download of a Beater bat diagram to get the proportions correct. I used the spray paint to add a base coat and a ruler and marker to measure and draw out the lines. I then filled in the rest with the acrylic paint by hand. After it was dry, I applied a clear coat because it would be getting many beatings.
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If this project inspires you to make your own please tag/share with me on Instagram, Facebook or Pinterest. I would love to see what you come up with.