Check out these adorable handcrafted piñatas made here in Vancouver

Jun 1 2021, 10:02 pm

Made in Vancouver is a collaboration between Vancity and Daily Hive. Together, we’re turning the spotlight onto local businesses, organizations, and individuals who are helping to create a healthy local economy.

Birthday cakes are one of the best parts about a birthday party. We love them when we are little, and love them when we’re adults. Another fun birthday item that was always a party favourite is the piñata.

So why do we barely see them anymore?

It’s likely because cakes can be personalized with unique images and messages that appeal to us every single year. It used to be the case where if you’ve seen one piñata, you’ve seen them all — until now.

Josephine Yao started Vancouver Piñatas in 2020 by designing, assembling, and packaging piñatas herself. Each one is made with fun designs, like adorable food items, popular animated characters, and cute animals,  which means there is something for everyone. Yao is in the business of spreading smiles and the joy of bashing a piñata to expose the surprises inside is officially back.


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Vancity has been supporting people in our communities since 1946, like local artists. As part of our Made in Vancouver series spotlighting local businesses, we talked to Josephine Yao about creating a fun product that uniquely celebrates people’s interests.

“I am new to the piñata game and I am still trying to figure things out for myself based on what I know already,” Yao told Daily Hive.

“It’s been a heck of a journey engineering these mini piñatas and turning them into the best version of themselves. To answer the question, I am influenced by everything around me,” Yao added.

Yao originally wanted to go out and buy a piñata for a gift, and couldn’t find any that were very good. So, like a true creative spirit, she made her own. Then, like a true entrepreneur, she made more, and realized there was a legitimate market for these fun products. She continued to design and sell these, specifically for the Vancouver market.

The mini piñatas were inspired by the lack of space in most Vancouver homes and that most people did not want to even smash their piñata after receiving it,” Yao told us.


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You can definitely still smash these piñatas to pieces (and why wouldn’t you want to?), but these look so good, you don’t necessarily have to.

I decided little individual, pull tab piñatas would be perfect to open and display afterwards,” said Yao. They are now super duper popular amongst the amazing gifters of Vancouver,” she added.

Piñatas will always be a fun activity that puts smiles on everyone’s faces, but it’s the gift with more hidden gifts inside. It’s more than likely a piñata as a gift is the first time that receiver has ever gotten one. There’s never a bad reason to give a piñata.


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Put it this way, I want to give myself a piñata when I forget to drink coffee in the morning and not get caffeine withdrawal in the afternoon,” she said. “Make with these piñatas, what you will. It’s 2021, you don’t need a good reason to smash a piñata or give a piñata,” Yao added.

Making these piñatas and filling orders for hours on end is even more impressive knowing Yao is doing it all on her own.

If I take the joy out of it for myself, I can’t see myself doing it for much longer, regardless of the number of orders coming in,” said Yao. “I am just focusing on my piñatas and making sure that they are a great as they can be.”


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The joy of making these festive piñatas is made even easier for Yao because she’s doing it right here in Vancouver.

I love looking at art and it’s literally everywhere in the city,

“I definitely found my niche that connects me to everyone else,” said Yao. “I’ve dabbled in other creative art forms, but it did not take off like this one. Vancouver is an expensive city, and art is always competitive, but it feels good knowing that people are following their dreams regardless,” she added.

There is so much art in this city and people love that about Vancouver. We also love to support the local artists, and people seem to be falling for these new piñatas made by Yao. She’s already seeing emerging favourites, even if it can be a learning process seeing what people want to buy.


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Vancouver is saturated with talented artists already,” she said. “I do find it hard to gage what everyone wants and likes, the unique designs that I invest most of my time in creating are usually the less popular ones. Everyone seems to love the basic koala, pineapple, ramen and avocado,” she also added.

No matter which piñata you decide to order from Vancouver Piñatas, it will make for a fantastic gift and stress reliever in a time where we might need that the most. It’s also another excellent way to support our local artists and entrepreneurs.

Vancouver specifically is one of the raddest place to sell your art because people are always looking to buy handmade and local to support artists,” said Yao.

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