Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons.
~ Jim Bishop
With fall being the favorite time of year for many of us, it’s no wonder it’s such a great season for getting the creative juices going! One look through the fall editions of home decor magazines and blogs, and you’re bound to see why pumpkins are the ideal blank canvas for so many inspiring ideas.
This is a quick and easy DIY project that you can create in no time at all and will dress up your pumpkins quicker than you can say “Boo!”
Total time to create this look: 30-45 minutes
PUMPKINS WITH GILDED ACORNS PROJECT
For this project, you will need the following items:
- Pumpkins with long, curvy stems, which I personally find irresistible, especially if they’ve still got a little of the vine still clinging to it. They’re just very expressive and seem to have so much personality, but I digress…white pumpkins will look amazing with the colors used in this project, but any color pumpkin will work beautifully.
- Acorns with intact stems, preferably double acorns, which are harder to find but easier to tie on than single acorns.
- Pine cones. Almost any kind will do, but I prefer the type shown below, as they’re easier to tie twine onto. For this project, I chose smaller spruce cones to go with my petite-sized sugar pumpkin.
- Metallic gold paint and a small paintbrush. You can even use gold spray paint for the acorns if you prefer. For this project, I used a product called Brush ‘N Leaf made by Amaco in Interior Antique Gold, which I bought from an arts supply store. TIP: Brush ‘N Leaf is also great for touching up worn-off gilding on old picture frames.
- Jute twine in a narrow width.
- Black and white ribbon (5/8″-7/8″ wide will work well but experiment and see what works best for you). Look for gingham, whip stitch, polka dotted, or even plain black raffia. Alternatively, you could try velvet ribbon in fall colors, like olive green and chocolate brown.
- Paint acorns with metallic gold paint and let dry. If you also plan to paint the edges or tips of the pine cones, lightly paint those now and allow to dry as well.
- While the acorns are drying, tie the pine cones onto the stem of the pumpkin with your jute twine so that the pine cones dangle, like so:
- Next, tie your gilded acorns onto the dangling pine cones using additional jute twine, as much as you need to secure them. You’ll ultimately want the acorns and pine cones to rest near the base of the stem so hike everything up by wrapping the excess dangling twine around the stem base once or twice more.
- Cut a length of ribbon (6″-8″ should be sufficient). Tie ribbon around the pumpkin stem into a bow and display. Here are examples of the completed project displayed on our mantel, one with gingham ribbon and the other with polka dotted:
ALTERNATE LEAF DECORATION: You can alternately substitute ribbon with leaf embellishments made of felt, burlap, or velvet. Below is a wonderful embroidered felt leaf pattern that I found on Etsy from TLCsTreasures, but you can also find pre-cut versions of felt leaves at craft stores without the embroidery. And here’s a fun example of burlap leaves in fall colors from Oriental Trading. Even real leaves will work if they’re pliable enough (try gilding them for a shimmery yet natural look). Once you’ve decided on the type of leaf, tie them onto the pumpkin stem using twine, or simply tuck the stems under the wrapped twine. You could also adhere the leaves directly to the top of the pumpkin with an adhesive (I find that Aleene’s Tacky Glue has great adhesion for crafts like these because of its quick drying time).
Keep your decorated pumpkins indoors or sheltered from the elements under a covered porch and enjoy your handiwork all season!
Can’t wait to carve up some jack-o-lanterns for Halloween! Enjoy the fall, dear readers…