Custom file maché sword piñata!

Published by Manning on respectable 2nd, 2019

My ceo at my day task asked me if I’d it is in up because that making a record maché knife piñata because that our company’s 10th anniversary, and also I jumped at the chance! This thing is a giant-sized replica the a wooden sword the periodically alters hands among different teams below as a trophy because that amazing creative work. Here’s a pic of the real sword and one that the winning teams, on ours company’s Instagram. Anyway, I’d never made a piñata before, but I constantly wanted to shot — it was fun!

I began with some photos i took that the wooden sword.

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I photographed the knife on a printout that a network of square inches; this is a trick I consisted of so i can conveniently eyeball the real-life dimensions when I’m in Photoshop. Ns scaled the whole thing up to make a graphic that’s around 65″ long, and then ns exaggerated the size to make the knife thicker and bulkier overall, to allow much more room for candy and other treats inside!

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I printed out the graphic as numerous pages, videotaped ’em together, and also cut the end the sword shape.

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I offered foam board as the base because that the sword shape. I tape-recorded three sheets of foam board together with shipping tape, and also then ns traced mine printout top top them and also cut out the form with an X-acto knife. I collection aside the big printout; I’ll require it later on to use as a overview when placing the letters on the piñata.

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I designed a bunch of shapes in Photoshop to help build the end the 2d knife shape into a 3d sculpture — two lengthy thin pieces for the blade, and a most smaller half-ovals and other forms for the rest. Ns traced these forms onto foam board and also cut lock out.

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Then i hot-glued and taped every these forms along the size of the base at the suitable points.

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The sword’s manage (I learned this is dubbed the grip) to be the most intricate component of the whole sword, for this reason I made up a more facility method to create the rounded concave shapes there. I supplied thin strips the construction record for this — this took lots of measuring and also planning to get it perfect! Like, I drew tons that lines v a leader to make sure that the parts of the paper strips the touch the edges of the foam to be 1/4″, and also the curved components that span between the foam parts are 2 1/2″. That method the whole thing end up looking very regular and geometric. I set all these file strips in location with the tiniest dots of glue I might get the end of my mini warm glue gun. This whole process was really tricky!

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I climate loosely covered the strips of document with masking tape. This watch so lot uglier 보다 the record strips! yet it doesn’t matter; the following steps will certainly hide all of that.

To additional solidify the grip, I extended this area v one layer of file maché. You deserve to read around my file maché procedure and products here.

Next: the guard and the pommel (more native I had actually to watch up!). The guard is basically just an irregular-shaped box, when the pommel is huge and round prefer a smooshed rarely often, rarely sphere.

At this point I forgot come take pictures of several large steps! This happens as soon as I’m confused/distracted/stressed out!

I built the pommel in a similar way to the grip, through foam board edges and strips of paper. I then spanned this shape with masking tape and also then a great of file maché.

I’d currently cut the end the two large foam pieces for the external surfaces security a if back. I developed a sort of box form out that foam board to walk in between these panels and also hold them out at the ideal distance. I then built a wall of poster board roughly all this and also taped every little thing together.

Now on come the blade area. Ns used many strips the construction file to expectancy over the lengthy foam ridges in stimulate to develop the outer “walls” the the blade.

I spanned over the blade form with a class of masking tape, and also then a class of shipping tape. This is to assist solidify and also stabilize the tongue so the won’t gain dented as soon as I apply document maché (coming up).

My base because that the sword piñata was done! prior to moving ~ above to record maché, i carefully included a layer of aluminum foil all around the sword, connecting the here and there through tiny piece of tape. The foil will certainly act together a release agent so ns can conveniently remove the record maché from the base when it’s done. The grip was impossible to cover nicely with foil, so I offered plastic plunder on the part. I hate doing every one of this! Attaching every the foil and also plastic pave is a actual pain, and no matter how cautious you are you can just feel how you’re covering up details and losing part crispness to the shape. It constantly feel favor this component is going badly, but then as soon as the document maché is on there it’s entirely fine. Speak of which…

Paper maché

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Finally it was time for document maché! I spanned the entirety sword piñata with five layers of paper maché over numerous days. Look at how big this point is! Pictured with 5’8″ creep for scale.

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When the record maché was dry, ns made three incisions v my X-acto knife: First, ns chopped the totality sword in fifty percent with a line around the guard. Then ns made a lengthy incision all along one leaf of the blade. Lastly, ns traced a plastic cup onto the ago of the pommel and cut the end this circle. This will be the hole where the treats will go in!

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I very closely pulled all of the internal materials out of the file maché. This to be pretty difficult! I started with the guard/grip/pommel; I got to in and started breaking up the foam board and tape and also stuff with my hands, which yes, really took a most physical effort. Some of the ingredient was yes, really locked in there and hard to pull out. This ends up being a little different because that every project. Plus, something to keep in psychic is that as soon as you reduced through numerous layers of record maché through an X-acto knife, the cut edges that the file maché have the right to be surprisingly sharp! friend can offer yourself some pretty serious file cuts as soon as you stick your hands in there to work, and also I certain did! Gardening gloves would certainly definitely aid here.

I regulated to remove all the foam board and also tape and stuff, and most that the aluminum foil. Girlfriend can practically never acquire all the foil the end of a project choose this; some of it is just stuck in there also well. But this isn’t a problem.

Getting the stuff the end of the blade segment was lot easier; I might easily open up up the whole blade thanks to the lengthy incision ns made follow me the edge. The inner products came the end in one big piece, and also then ns pulled the end as much of the aluminum foil as possible.

I closed increase the piñata by taping the piece together and then extending the taped edges with an additional four great of document maché. I have to mention, I’d use way fewer layers in its entirety if i were make a piñata because that kids; this thing was to plan to be beat on by adults v a lot of stress to job-related out.

I didn’t close increase the hole in the end of the pommel at this stage…

Creating the opened for treats

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Back to the circular item I reduced out of the finish of the pommel. I included some stuff to revolve this circle right into sort the a plug that could be used to close up the piñata in ~ the really end as soon as the candy and stuff is inside. To do this, very first I trimmed a very thin piece off the sheet of the circle, come make certain it’ll absolutely fit ago in, also if points warp a bit. Climate I cut out a slightly smaller sized disk that foam board and taped it to the inner next of the circle. Then I included a ring of pasteboard (from a LaCroix box) on the outer side of this plug, come act together a lip to prevent the the point from falling within the piñata. I covered this entirety plug shape with three layers of document maché.

My setup was come hot-glue this plug really firmly in location after pour it until it is full the piñata v treats. For currently I just collection it aside.

Adding grooves come the pommel and also guard

I left these grooves because that this late phase of the project just since I knew it would certainly be a lot easier this way. The would’ve been lot more daunting to construct the pommel and guard shapes with grooves already in them, and also then try to cover the totality thing with 7 layers of record maché without inadvertently smoothing the end the grooves. For this reason I decided to carry out the opposite and create the grooves after the fact, by structure up the convex spaces between the grooves rather of digging out the concave shapes of the grooves.

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For the guard, I supplied thin strips that foam board to construct up these ridges, and I included a couple layers the construction file and masking ice cream (not shown) in ~ the ago side the this to smooth that biggest foam shape onto the guard and also create a pretty curve.

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I then covered over these areas with simply three class of file maché. This details are just for show; lock don’t have to contribute to the as whole sturdiness the the piñata.

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I did usually the exact same thing for the pommel, yet with strips of soft handmade foam quite than foam board. Then I included the construction file and masking tape at the external edges, and then covered all this with three layers of file maché.

Reinforcing the piñata

With a piñata this narrow, ns was worried the the very first person that hit it might break the totality thing in fifty percent and/or hit it under off that the wire it’ll it is in hanging on, so i took a few measures the would help keep the knife in one piece and also hanging up also as it’s acquiring destroyed…

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I offered a lengthy piece of slim steel cable to produce two loops that’ll be supplied to hang the piñata. I measured the sword and the wire and figured out whereby to put the loops; I simply twisted the wire approximately a pen a few times because that each loop. Then ns took videotaped the wire down on the knife with hefty duty shipping tape. This every goes on the leaf of the knife that’ll be the “top” when it’s hanging horizontally.

I then spanned the wire and also tape with three layers of paper maché. The setup is the the thick plastic ice in there will (hopefully) stop the wire from tearing with the document maché.

Adding the logo and text

I printed out the Neon logo and the message at the ideal size, and then I cut out the letters, leaving many of space around them. I pasted the letter onto large strips the poster board making use of the very same wallpaper adhesive I usage for file maché. I understand from suffer that once you paste paper onto poster board favor this it’ll dry a lot together it dries, so ns weighed under the edges of the poster board with heavy publications in order to prevent/reduce curling.

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When the dough was 100% dry, I very first cut the letters apart into big/loose rectangles (above), and also then closely I cut the letter out v scissors and an X-acto knife (below). You have the right to see I significant a period at the height of every one, to help me remember which way they every go.

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The letter were a tiny bit warped and curled, so i laid some heavy publications on them and left castle there over night. This made them nice and also flat. The over pic is ~ they to be flattened out.

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I got my printout of the sword form to usage as a overview for put the letters. I cut out the the space around the letters, leaving the guideline of the sword and the room around the Neon logo design at the back. I taped this top top the sword, and then I used a marker to mark where the tops and bottoms of all the letters have to go.

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When I removed this paper, I had a perfect guide for gluing all the letters in place.

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I pasted the letter on using the exact same wallpaper dough I usage for paper maché; i smoothed a bunch of paste onto the surface, then set the letters in place. Ns let this dried in the sunlight for a pair hours. As soon as it was every dry, a couple of corners the a few of the letters weren’t completely glued down, so ns took some Tacky Glue and also applied that in tiny blobs with a toothpick under the raised bits. I pressed the corners down right into place and also wiped away any type of excess the oozed out.

The finished letters aren’t very thick, therefore they don’t was standing out very much on the blade, however they’ll provide wonderful guide because that hand-painting the letters later.

Painting

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I applied a coating the spray gesso come the piñata in order come smooth out the torn paper texture a bit. Ns let that collection for a few hours. You have the right to see that the letters have nearly disappeared now that the whole thing is white top top white.

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Here’s a silly trick ns use occasionally for choosing spray paint colors: ns made this graphic (above) in Photoshop by sampling the colors native a photograph of the genuine sword, and I sent it come myself for this reason I’d have it on my phone. I visited the arts store and I eyeballed this graphics in front of all the millions of colors that spray repaint of they have so i could pick the closest ones. It’s always hard to be sure! but I think it’d be means harder to choose without a visual reference choose this.

I always use Montana golden acrylic spray paint

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; it’s the highest-quality spray repaint I’ve ever worked with, and also they have an amazing variety of colors. The color I ended up v for the sword were “nougat” and also “cacao” — tasty!

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Anyway, i spray painted the blade of the piñata v the lighter that the 2 brown colors, letting the repaint spill over onto the security a bit.

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I let that set for a day. Then I offered newspaper and also painter’s ice to safeguard the blade — you deserve to see my usual technique above; an initial I apply the painter’s tape follow me the line I desire to produce (that’s the white line, dead center), and then ns use constant masking tape (which is lot stickier) to tape the newspaper ~ above the painter’s tape. I always use at least two layers of newspaper, since if girlfriend spray the repaint on really heavy it can sometimes soak with one class of paper.

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Now, v my surface ar protected, ns spray painted the grip/guard/pommel v the darker brown color. Of food I also spray painted the small circular spanning for the hole in the pommel. Ns let that set for a day.

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It’s important to remove the tape slowly, so regarding not peel any paint off!

I very closely painted the Neon logo and all the message by hand, making use of acrylic paint and some small paintbrushes. I blended some brown, yellow, black, and also white to gain the ideal color.

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And finally, the sword piñata to be done! every that continues to be is to fill it v stuff, hot-glue the plug ~ above the pommel, and then hang it up and watch world beat the crap out of it! I’ll shot to obtain some pics/video of the thing in activity at the work event where this point will be displayed. Ns can’t wait to see just how that goes!