Paper Mache Piggy Bank

A paper mache piggy bank is both a fun craft idea and a very practical one too making an excellent opportunity to teach children about saving money. As I was putting this together I was curious to know how on earth these containers for holding savings came to be known as 'piggy banks' (I mean, what on earth does a pig have to do with money?) and this is the theory I found:

During the middle ages, household containers were usually made of clay rather than metal. The clay most commonly used by potters was known as 'pygg'. Housewives of the time would store surplus coins in their earthenware pots, and referred to them as their 'pygg banks'. Over the next few hundred years, these pots retained their name even after potters no longer used pygg clay, and the name transformed to 'piggy banks'. When English potters of the 19th century were asked to make piggy banks, they produced containers in the shape of pigs - and thus the current form.

If you want to have a look at examples of piggy banks and a little more of the history, try

Just for fun, you can also get a piggy bank screen saver (It floats piggy banks all over the screen) at This piggy bank page

After all the intro, here is the craft idea...


  • An egg carton or egg tray
  • A balloon
  • paper and glue for paper mache
  • Pink paper or pink paint
  • cellotape or masking tape

Method First blow up the balloon to the size of the piggy bank you want. Paper mache over the balloon and allow to dry. Once it has dried and the paper mache is thick enough, pop the balloon and remove it. Next, cut out 6 egg cups from the egg carton or egg tray. Tape 4 of these on as feet and one on as a snout. Cut the last one in half vertically, and tape the two halves on as ears. Now add a layer of paper mache over the legs, snout and ears. For the final layer, either coat it in pink paper, or paint it with pink paint. A pipe cleaner makes a fine curled tail.

Once the final product is dried, use a sharp knife to cut a slot in the pigs back.

Try making the most of this activity to teach the value of saving to the children. We personally have our daughter put part aside for donations, part for saving and part for spending, which is probably a fairly common practice amongst parents. With the piggy bank you could potentially make three pigs and create a financial lesson around the story of the three pigs - spend your money and you are building a house of straw which will never last etc..

Happy saving!

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