I decided last November that I wanted to dress up as a piñata for Halloween, and have been concepting the costume for weeks now. Bringing my vision to reality turned out to be quite the hilarious feat, as Camille and I got to work on my prototype & I was humbly reminded of the woes of leotard life. After it all, I’m happy to report that I’m super pleased with the way the outfit came together (though the true test will lie in its durability), and that creating it was actually very simple. If you’re still costume-less and have gone into panic mode, recreating this getup is easy as pie, and I’m here to show you how to do it…

  1. Cut crepe paper into long, 1″ wide strips.
  2. Use hot glue gun to attach strips to bottom half of leotard in three layers, all the way around, creating the ‘skirt’. Cut skirt strips to desired length in zig zag pattern.
  3. Cut crepe paper into long 3″ wide strips. Be sure that the length of the strips run perpendicular to the grain of the crepe paper, to allow stretching when worn. Use scissors to cut 2″ long fringe into the strips (as pictured above).
  4. Glue fringed crepe paper strips in arched pattern on front of the bodice (as pictured below), and wrap around back of bodice to cover.
  5. Use remaining fringe strips to trim neckline and straps.
  6. It’s not pictured, but I think I’ll create some fringe cuffs, and maybe even fringe tube socks, to finish off the look.

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Comments (107)
  1. 1
    Claire Zinnecker October 26, 2011 at 8:07 am

    oh. my. goodness. best costume ever! Chanel you rock.

  2. 2
    jess October 26, 2011 at 8:09 am

    HOLY GUACAMOLE, CHANEL. I love it! So adorable!

  3. 3
    Damaris @KitchenCorners October 26, 2011 at 8:16 am

    What a great costume. I love this. I want to be a Pinata.

  4. 4
    Jennifer October 26, 2011 at 8:34 am

    I am impressed. I love this idea. And she looks so cute! This sort of reminds me of the year when I dresses up like a vine of grapes :: leggings and lots of purple balloons attached to my body. It was awkward, but really fun! Again, great job!

  5. 5
    ash October 26, 2011 at 8:47 am

    you know i love this. byrd? next year?

  6. 6
    Supal October 26, 2011 at 8:47 am

    this is so adorable!

  7. 7
    Barchbo October 26, 2011 at 8:52 am

    What a darling costume! So clever and well-executed.

  8. 8
    Laura October 26, 2011 at 9:13 am

    I love it! I still need a costume and I seriously might attempt this! Great idea.

  9. 9
    Beach Coast Style October 26, 2011 at 9:52 am

    omg!!! how creative! love the idea and she looks so cute!

  10. 10
    Lisa October 26, 2011 at 10:19 am

    This is the best costume idea EVER!! Wow! It is so fun and perfect. I’m LOVING it.

  11. 11
    Kelly October 26, 2011 at 10:52 am

    Obsessed with this!!! I want to make one!

  12. 12
    Jen Pinkston October 26, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    Oh my goodness! You could not be any more adorable!
    Love it!

  13. 13
    Heather October 26, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    This is SO cute!! You make it look so easy that I want to try it! One of the best DIY costumes I’ve seen!!

  14. 14
    Rebecca - A Daily Something October 26, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Oh my word, this is adorable. My fave part about this post is the colorful pics. Also, LOVE the crepe paper sheets. Need to get my hands on that stuff!

  15. 15
    Aleksander October 26, 2011 at 1:41 pm

    I lile the dres and the smile of this model. I ad your site to my list

  16. 16
    The Design Daredevil {Jessie D Miller} October 26, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    I LOVE it! Is it bad that I would probably wear that as a dress to a party…….?

  17. 17
    Varda October 26, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    OMG. The best custom!!! What a great idea, so proud of you!!!

  18. 18
    jamie P October 26, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    Very cool! You are so crafty :). Is it bad that I kind of want one for a cocktail party, and I’m not talking halloween 😉

    • Camille Styles October 26, 2011 at 10:25 pm

      Jamie, you would be SO adorable in this costume! I mean seriously, you can pull anything off…

  19. 19
    Ashley October 26, 2011 at 9:28 pm

    How fun! Such a cute, creative outfit!!!

  20. 20
    Emily @ Little Bits of Delight October 26, 2011 at 9:29 pm

    I’m seriously regretting my costume choice now! Alas, the three hours making my dinosaur tail have already been spent… pinning this for next year, though!

    • Camille Styles October 26, 2011 at 10:24 pm

      Oh my gosh, a dinosaur costume sounds adorable! Send us links to pics next week! 🙂

  21. 21
    Xio October 28, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    I LOVE IT!!!!! So bright and fun! I might have to try this.

  22. 22
    Nicole October 29, 2011 at 7:37 am

    This is AMAZING! I am actually supposed to go to a Dia de los Muertos themed party tonight and was debating over my costume (not into the dead look) – you may just have a costume copier 😉

  23. 23
    Laura October 31, 2011 at 9:27 am

    I made it! http://ooola-la.tumblr.com/post/12160457349/my-halloween-costume
    I think it turned out great. Thanks for the great idea!!

    • Camille Styles October 31, 2011 at 10:18 am

      omg this turned out incredible Laura!! You look absolutely darling. Happy Halloween!

  24. 24
    Kelly October 31, 2011 at 10:16 am

    I used this post as my halloween inspiration 🙂 The costume came out amazing and was an absolute hit at the party I went to! Thanks for the idea!

    • Camille Styles October 31, 2011 at 10:17 am

      Oooh we love love love hearing this! Did you take any pics?

  25. 25
    pris January 7, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    I will do this on this year’s halloween! 😀 my first halloween on college ..it will be great:D

  26. 26
    Kaity September 13, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    this is such a clever idea! I’ll have to keep it in mind for future Halloweens. 🙂

  27. 27
    Karly September 28, 2012 at 12:28 am

    Love this it’s adorable but what I’m wondering is the durability of it owe night? Like for example when u sat down and got back up did it wreck any of the costume?

    • Chanel Dror September 28, 2012 at 12:53 pm

      Hi Karly. It was actually REALLY durable! A few strips came unglued here in there, but no major damage and no tears in the crepe paper, and nothing fell off. I even touched it up and re-wore it on Cinco de Mayo 🙂

  28. 28
    Paulina October 10, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    When you glued it onto the leotard, then put it on, did it stretch to fit your body? I am worried when the leotard stretches as I wear it they will break

    • Chanel Dror October 10, 2012 at 1:19 pm

      Hi Paulina! Because the crepe paper material has ridges it was able to stretch quite a bit. Even if one glue piece becomes detached here & there, the whole strip should still stay put, and you can just touch it up as you go. Overall, it was very durable! Good luck!

  29. 29
    Christy October 11, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    Hi there, I just got my crepe paper order in the mail today and am excited to make this costume. Do you by chance have any photos of the back of the bodice? If you do, that would be amazing, thanks!

  30. 30
    Cammie October 12, 2012 at 9:02 am

    My friends and I were thinking of doing this costume for our senior dress up day. Very creative costume! We love it! any pointers? How long in advance should we make it? Did it stay together well?

  31. 31
    Eva October 14, 2012 at 2:01 am

    Where can you find crepe paper? I live in Albuquerque where there are not alot of sources. Could you use streamers? I don’t think that there’s enough time between now and Halloween to order it online.

    • Avery October 28, 2012 at 10:09 am

      That’s what I used when my daughter made this costume for herself and it turned out super cute.

      • Eva October 28, 2012 at 4:39 pm

        Thanks Avery! I ended up ordering the original crepe paper from Paper Mart online, and it turned out great! For those who are thinking of making this, it only lasted the night, because it tore every time I put it on and took it off (and I’m a small girl).

  32. 32
    obxchick October 31, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Hi Chanel! I loved your idea and could not figure out how to show you my costume. I made a WordPress and posted my photo there. Thanks!

  33. 33
    marie September 18, 2013 at 10:56 am

    O.k. have a few questions,did you the premium or heavy duty crepe paper.and in the picture it shows you attaching it to a leotard with no legs,but in the finish picture of your full body you can see nude short leg leotards? using the bathroom seems to be trying to do without destorying the costume..

    • Chanel Dror September 18, 2013 at 11:59 am

      Hi Marie. I used the premium crepe paper. And those aren’t short legs on the leotard, that’s just the upper leg on the nude tights i’m wearing. The costume was surprisingly durable, but if you’re worried about going to the restroom, I’d advise finding a leotard with snaps at the crotch, or cutting the crotch of an existing leotard and adding your own snaps or velcro! Good luck 🙂

  34. 34
    marie September 18, 2013 at 10:58 am

    Love the costume and want to make it .hoping it will work on a plus size woman.

  35. 35
    Teresa September 24, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    I LOVE this idea! So adorable. I asked my sis-in-law if I could make a tiny one for her 2 yr old and then take a stick to her just hard enough to get the candy outta her. For some reason she said no.

  36. 36
    inspiremybucketlist October 7, 2013 at 12:06 am

    Im planning on making this for Halloween and I’m so glad you have a step by step! How did it hold up when it came to liquids? I will be going to wear this to a few parties if I am able to make it and am worried about drinks spilling on it.

  37. 37
    Laura October 20, 2013 at 6:11 pm

    Attempting to make this costume now with a friend it is so hard. Looks way easier online then to make it in real life. Crepe paper keeps ripping when I try on the actual costume. We’re now starting to apply the strips one by one

    • Chanel Dror October 20, 2013 at 7:09 pm

      Hi Laura, sorry to hear that you’re struggling with this! As I mentioned to another reader, a few bits may come unglued here and there, but overall the crepe paper strips should stay in place. If you need, you can make touch-ups while wearing it (either with fabric glue, or by being extra careful with the hot glue gun). Good luck!

  38. 38
    Jessica October 26, 2013 at 9:35 pm

    I would love to see a picture of the back of this costume. I made a modified version, instead of a piñata dress I made a piñata shirt but when I went to put it on it was so difficult. I could barely get it on, even though I made the shirt while stretch on a large cardboard. Any pointers?? Did you do the same crepe paper treatment on the back??

  39. 39
    Peter October 27, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    Wow – this a fun and creative costume. I don’t think I’ve seen anything similar before:)

    I thought that you and your readers might be interested in the Creative Costume Contest at http://www.halloweenhero.com/costume-contest-2013.html

    You can enter multiple times as long as each entry is for a different costume – and there is a $250 grand prize.

    Anyway, thanks again for sharing this fun costume and tutorial. Happy Halloween!!


  40. 40
    Katie October 6, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    This is such a cute idea! How did you make the headpiece?

    • Venicia October 24, 2014 at 10:51 pm

      To make the headpeice you need to use the crepe paper, smae pattern, and glue them onto party hats (2). Ajust them on your head so that it looks like a pinata!
      Thank You!

  41. 41
    Jason P. (@Candid_bk) October 9, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    Gotta admit, I’d hit that.

  42. 42
    Judy September 17, 2015 at 3:23 pm

    Made this last Halloween. # 72 above is right: the strips “popped off” when putting on the leotard .of course it did: it becomes larger when stretched . Yes,the crepe paper is stretchable but not when hot glued on. We had to start over by putting on the leotard and with a towel against her skin,so the hot glue didn’t burn, re- glue the paper on. It did turn out vey cute. Even made a small version for her poodle so they matched going to work that day. It’s a one day event only.

  43. 43
    Berenice September 10, 2022 at 1:42 pm

    Hi there, may I ask how durable this was ? I feel like if I sat down it would tear the Crepe. Any updates after you wore it ?



Chanel Dror