DIY – Easy Flannel Pumpkins

MML Flannel pumpkins 500

This is such a fun & quick decoration DIY for fall! I’m sure you’ve seen these little fabric pumpkins done in velvet…so pretty in all the jewel tones or creams & whites…but so expensive! What’s that all about? These little babies are super cheap and fast to DIY even using velvet!

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(Above photo) To give you an idea of how expensive velvet pumpkins are – these I saw when we recently stayed at Apple Farm on a coastal wine-tasting trip. Top orange pumpkin is around $60, bottom gray small one is $30! Whaaatt??? Big ones were $80. No amount of wine could convince me to pay that ; )

I lean more toward a casual look so I was thinking of how they would look in a different fabric. I love fall color palettes incorporating shades of gray…a much calmer fall color combination. So I thought my little pumpkins would look great made with gray flannel fabric. I made some in the gray flannels then, because it was cheap & fun, I headed back to the fabric store and bought some pale orange faux suede to add to the mix. What can I say…orange is my happy place, and it is Fall. I also made some of the faux suede pumpkins with the fabric wrong-side out so they would be a shade darker…for variety.

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Fabric choice makes all the difference – Flannel is soft and thin enough to drape but, unlike velvet, it has a textured matte finish. More of a natural feeling fabric.  My color choice of flannel was 2 warm of the 50 shades of gray <|:>)

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The filler used to stuff the pumpkins makes all the difference, too! I bought some cheap styrofoam pumpkins at the Dollar store (just popped off the foam stems) and a few bags of uncooked pearl barley at the grocery store. Later, when I made the faux suede pumpkins, I used polyfill (batting) to see how that filler made the pumpkin look. The polyfill gave a squatty-look similar to the barley filler, but it did not drape as well. Each filler changes the pumpkins’ shape which is nice, since real pumpkins come in all shapes and sizes. Truthfully, once the stems are on they all look fabulous all nestled together in a basket or on a table. In fact, I didn’t start liking the big faux suede pumpkin until I put the stem on it, the stem is dried from a big pumpkin 2 seasons ago. That is how long I stored stems for this project!

Process:

SUPPLIES: Soft Fabric, stuffing material (barley, beans, polyfill, batting, or a pumpkin form), thread, needle, scissors, measuring tape, plate or other round template, stems (*stem ideas are listed in the post).

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Cut a circle out of fabric, it is easiest to just use a plate or platter for a random sized pumpkin (like my barley or polyfill pumpkins.) But to get a circle that would fit my Dollar store styrofoam pumpkins, I used a pen and string to draw out a specific size to fit. Here’s how: I measured from stem at top to bottom center of pumpkin, added 1″ and cut a string that when tied to an ink pen would be that measurement. Place string end in center of fabric and with pen stretched out draw on fabric as you turn from center. watch that the string doesn’t wrap around the pen as you make the circle. The circle when cut gives that extra inch all the way around to sew & make gathers. Wheew…Now, back to the Process…Using a needle/thread hand-sew a running stitch 1/2″- 1″ from edge. The smaller the pumpkin the smaller the stitch. I purposely vary my stitch-length. Pull thread to gather as you go. Don’t sweat any of the process this is fool-proof.  Insert the filling and draw thread tight to close the opening. Make some additional knot stitches to hold and cut thread.

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Tuck the gathered edges into the top of the pumpkin and attach a stem. *For stems you can use dried real pumpkin stems from previous season, twigs/branches, driftwood, or my favorite easy solution…buy some mini faux gourds & pumpkins at Dollar store, they can easily be pulled out of the plastic or foam. Reminder this season before you throw out your real pumpkins, trim off the pumpkin meat until you get the entire stems off. Let them air dry, do not bag, turn occasionally so they don’t mold.

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Pumpkin, above, is filled with a Dollar store styrofoam pumpkin. It has a taller more structured shape. This one has a real dried pumpkin stem.

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Pumpkin, above, is filled with barley which makes it more squatty and the gathers drape nicely; this one has a faux plastic stem.

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Thanks for meeting me Lakeside!

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