Last year, Julien and I made a piggy bank for him out of paper mache. It was, of course, in the shape of a pig. This year, I decided it was time for Noah to have one of his very own as well. Then I decided it was a great gift for two of our favourite 5 year olds. So, armed with a Sunday edition of the newspaper and a glue recipe from an old issue of Living Crafts magazine, we set to work.
There is nothing particularly special on how we did this and most people have done paper mache work in school at some point, but if you are like me and have never really done it before, you can google it and there are lots of glue recipes, instructions, and helpful tips to get you going in the right direction. We made our basic body shape using a balloon that was only partially blown up. We put a good base layer down before adding legs and snout to make sure we had something to attach said legs and snout to.
Speaking of legs and snout, we used a plastic egg carton in which we cut apart the little cups. They work perfectly for the shape and size. Just make sure you put enough layers on them so the plastic doesn’t show through anywhere.
Next you need ears, and for that I just took a strip of paper and played with it until I got the look I wanted. After they were added, we did another good layer all over again just to make sure they were solid. No one wants a pig that falls apart or worse yet, wears through and looses all your money!
The last thing to add is a tail. For this I just sandwiched a twist tie between some of the newspaper, then coated it with glue, folded it up length wise and then wrapped it around my finger to give it its twisty shape. Attach it with a few strips of paper and there you have it.
Ours took about 4 days to dry completely but it all depends on weather and humidity and all that. Expect it to take at least 3-4 days. After they are completely dry, you can paint them. Now I just let the kiddos do whatever they want with them, but if you want them to be fancy, I would suggest putting a base coat or two to help hide the newsprint underneath.
As I said, these are their pigs and they decide how they are painted so we didn’t put a base coat on. These are quite big and the painting also took a few days to do. They came back to it when they felt like it and if your children are like mine, they are a bit Van Gogh-ish with the paint so that will also factor into drying times. Last thing to do is to cut a slot in the top to put your money into.
And there you have it, your very own “money pig”. Simple, easy and a fun way to clean up all that loose change around your house!