Have you seen all the cute piñata variations on Pinterest or Google? I just love to see all the different shapes and kinds of piñatas that I find online. When I see paper projects like this, I try to figure out how I can make them. I’ve always done that since I was a little girl. Well, the mini llama piñatas have captured my imagination and I figured out the best way to make one (or several) for Cinco de Mayo or for a Fiesta party as mini treat holders or even as party decor.
As much as I like these piñatas I don’t make them to bust open. For me, I put too much work into making them to tear them apart. So I usually make a trapdoor that you can open to insert some candy or a surprise or a message without messing up the cute little animal.
It’s not difficult at all to make, but it does take a little bit of time mostly to cover the cardboard llama with fringe. Initially I was going to make a bunch of mini llama piñatas to give to my coworkers, but I ran out of time. I only have 2 done rather than 14. I might end up giving them out on Thursday, Nueve de Mayo instead of Cinco de Mayo.
You don’t have to spend hardly anything to make this DIY Mini Llama Piñata because you most likely have all these materials readily at hand. And the pattern is free in my library so you can get started right away.
This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.
Materials to make a Mini Llama Piñata
Step by step directions on how to make the DIY Llama Piñata
- Download the llama piñata pattern template
- Cut out the llama pattern
- Tape the llama cardboard pieces together with masking tape
- Cut out fringe from tissue paper or crepe paper
- Glue fringe to the cardboard miniature llama starting at the bottom
- Glue the decorated saddle onto the llama piñata
- Cut out the eyes from the pattern template and glue to the llama’s face
- Add the ribbon bridle around the now and neck
- Decorate and personalize your llama piñata with tassels or tiny pom poms
- Add a message or some small pieces of candy in the trapdoor
Now let’s make that fun miniature llama piñata
Download the llama piñata pattern template
*** Earlier there was a problem with the file. Let me know if you have any problem downloading it or uploading it to your design software for your cutting machine. Email me if you have a problem – Lucy@paperglitterglue.com ***
First download the pattern from my Paper Glitter Glue library. The file is saved as a zip file which is compressed. So when you download it, you have to “unzip” it or uncompress it to get the file. Now you can see the PDF printable file and the SVG cut file for your automatic cutting machine.
Subscribe below to get the password if you haven’t already subscribed to my newsletter.
There are two 8.5 x 11 inch pages for the main pattern. The first page has the miniature llama templates and the saddle. I make most of my patterns in this size because that is the size cardboard I have.
I’ve made a short video (11 minutes) on how to make your own Mini Llama Piñata. It’s at the bottom of the post.
Cut out the llama pattern
On the second page there are 3 edge strips and 4 eyelashes. I cut the eyelashes out by hand, but I think you can cut them with the “Print and Cut” feature on a Cricut. You may wonder why there are 4 eyelashes on the page. Well, that is because I tend to misplace little pieces of paper after I cut them out so in my files I try to include extras.
Tape the llama cardboard pieces together with masking tape
I tried to make it very easy for you to make the little llamas by adding tabs on the outside of the pattern, but this is what happened.
It’s a crafter’s fail. It must have taken me more than 30 minutes to glue down all those tabs. Crazy.
Second attempt was better using a paper mache technique, but it’s still kind of awkward because the glued-on torn strips of paper don’t stick immediately so it is hard to get the edge piece to curve with the shape of the llama.
Masking tape is the way to go. The type of masking tape I used is a form of painter’s tape, but it adheres a little stronger than the blue and green or yellow painter’s tape that I use on most of my little houses. The blue and green painter’s tape will work as well, but I would apply a layer of Mod Podge over them to make sure the glue holds.
After you have cut out the two sides of the llama, so now tape the long piece of edging to the back piece with masking tape. The back piece is stronger than the front piece which has the saddle cut out so that’s why you use it FIRST as the base of the piñata.
To make the edge piece flexible enough to go around all the curves, pull it through your fingers. You need just over 2 pieces to go all around the llama. All of those pieces are on the second page of the pattern template with the eyelashes.
Cut out fringe from tissue paper or crepe paper
You can use a number of different materials for this step – either tissue paper or crepe paper streamers or even fancy crepe paper. Here it really doesn’t matter which material you use. I used my fancy crepe paper for two reasons. Number one – it is the only white paper for fringing that I have. In addition, I like the thick, wrinkly texture. But I don’t think you would really notice if I used tissue paper or crepe paper streamer for the fringe.
I just cut about a one inch strip from the crepe paper and cut the fringe about every 1/4 or so. If you use the crepe paper streamers, fold the paper in half to make the fringe. And for tissue paper layer, layer several strips together to cut the fringe.
Glue fringe to the cardboard mini llama starting at the bottom
So there is no one perfect way to glue on the fringe. You can’t mess it up because it’s supposed to be fringy. One time I just started at the bottom of the legs and worked my way up on the front. And the other time, I added the fringe to the edge and then to each side. It really doesn’t matter much. But do only one side at a time. Otherwise it’s a gluey mess.
Sometimes I trim the paper fringe as I go and sometimes I trim around the edge all at once. Below I trimmed around the head after I had all the pieces glued on.
Also I made a little tassel for the tail and a bit of fringe to go on the llama’s forehead. When you look at photos of llamas, they have these funny furry poofs on the top of their foreheads. It adds to their endearing charm so I added it to my little DIY cardboard piñata llamas.
Glue the decorated saddle onto the mini llama piñata
After the miniature llama is covered with fringe it’s time to glue the saddle on. I covered it with tissue paper and an extra layer of crepe paper that I just freehand cut out. You can add ribbons, trim, miniature pom poms, lots of tassels, whatever you want to decorate the saddle.
Obviously, if you want the saddle to hide a secret compartment, don’t glue down that side.
Cut out the eyes from the pattern template and glue to the llama’s face
Cut out the eyelashes from the pattern template. I didn’t bother cutting out the individual lashes. Now glue to the little llama. I put them about 1/2 down the face. Just play around to find the placement you like.
Add the ribbon bridle around the now and neck
I kept the bridle kind of simple with 2 lengths of ribbon around the nose and the neck glued directly to the llama.
Decorate your llama piñata with tassels or tiny pom poms
Now decorate as much as you want. Again I made pretty simple llamas with only a few fringed tassels on the saddle, but you can add lots more embellishments on the bridle and saddle. You can paint the feet a different color. You could even have gold feet on your llama. One crazy variation on the llama piñatas is called the llamacorn. Llamacorn? Yes, a combination llama and a unicorn.
Add a message or some small pieces of candy in the trapdoor
Finally add a message or stuff a few small pieces of candy in the trapdoor under the saddle. Now you have your very own “loot llama” like the one that delivers loot on the Fortnite video game.
And speaking of videos, here is the short video on Making the DIY Mini Lllama Piñata
Other Llama piñata ideas
There are so many other things you can do with these funny little piñatas. I mentioned the llamacorns – llama unicorn hybrids for cuteness overload. You can make them smaller and add a cord to hang them on a Christmas tree as ornaments. You could enlarge the pattern and make a real full-size llama piñata. And then there is the Loot Llama from the Fortnite who actually looks like a piñata in shades of purple and blue. He delivers supplies in the online game. You could even make a variation to look like him if you have Fortnite fans in your family.
So I hope you will try one of these mini llama piñatas because they are seriously cute and people will enjoy them as gifts or as decorations.
Let me know if you have any questions. You are always welcome to pin my projects on pinterest. And I now have a Facebook Group – Paper Houses and Paper Crafts Hosts by Paper Glitter Glue where you can post your questions and your projects as well.
Subscribe to get the Paper Glitter Glue Newsletter
Subscribe to get my latest newsletter by email. Also get access to the Paper Glitter Glue library. I will send you a newsletter every one to two weeks.