|A DIY pull string pumpkin pinata.|
If you've never used a pull string pinata, here's how it works. Hang the pinata, then have the children, one by one, pull a single string off the bottom of the pinata. Most of the ribbons will just fall off, doing nothing to the pinata. But once one string (indistinguishable from the others) is pulled, a trap door in the pinata will open and all the candy will fall out.
Sometimes you can find ready made pull string pinatas, but often you have to convert traditional pinatas into pull string pinatas. In the past, I've purchased pinata conversion kits, but the truth is, it's really easy to make a DIY pull string pinata - you don't need a special kit. Here's how.
What You'll Need:
Exacto knife or box cutter (you could use scissors, but it's more dangerous!)
Transparent adhesive tape (the kind used for wrapping gifts)
Small piece of cardboard
Extra tissue paper in a matching color
1. Begin by selecting a relatively flat location on the bottom of the pinata. Carefully remove the crepe or tissue paper covering an approximately 3 1/2 inch square near the center of the bottom. (If, for some reason, that seems too difficult, it's fine to skip this step...as long as you have matching tissue paper on hand.)
2. Use an Exacto knife to cut a door (about 3 1/2 inches square) in the "naked" area you just made.
4. With the Exacto knife, make a little hole in the center of the door. Thread one ribbon through it.
5. Cut a piece of cardboard about 1 1/2 inches square. Cut a little hole in the center. Thread the ribbon already in the door of the pinata through this small piece of cardboard.
6. Knot the ribbon so it will not slip through the hole it's thread through. (If desired, you may use strong duct tape over the knot as extra insurance. This is the string that will open the door of the pinata, making all the candy fall out, so you want to be sure that when a child tugs it, it won't just slip off without opening the door.)
7. Close the door. If desired, tape it lightly shut with one or two pieces of gift-wrapping tape. But remember, the door needs to open easily if a child pulls the string on it.
8. Use the gift-wrapping tape to tape the remaining ribbons to the pinata's bottom. Make sure they aren't on the door. (When a child pulls one of these ribbons, the ribbon will just fall off the pinata, not opening the candy door.)
making your own pinata - which isn't at all difficult, though it is time consuming - you can fill it with candy through the trap door, before closing that door and covering it with tissue paper.)