Monday, October 3, 2011

Velvet Pumpkins 101

The first time I walked into a store and saw these beauties I gasped!

Velvet pumpkins! What a fantastic idea.  However, I gasped a second time when I read the price tag. 
Made with real silk velvet and real dried pumpkin stems, a group of these gorgeous pumpkins would set me back a pretty penny.  Unless...I could figure out a way to make my own.

It wasn't long before my very crafty friend Laurel, of Petal Pusher Accessories, eye spied these pretties. She and I got to talking about duplicating them and we decided to join forces to tackle the task. 

While Laurel researched patterns and gathered supplies, I solicited my retired parents for any gourd stems they could find in their garden and tracked down silk velvet fabric in various colors.

When crafting day arrived, Laurel and I set down determined and armed for battle. I have to say, while I knew we'd find a way to make a cute velvet pumpkin, I never expected them to turn out as fabulous as they did.  I am so impressed with these and I know you will be too. 

These were not hard to make. Honestly, if you can sew on a button, you can make these pumpkins! So let's get started.

*In full disclosure, I an not a seamstress, so I do apologise for my abysmal use of sewing terminology.

Silk Velvet Fabric (a fat quarter of fabric will make around one large pumpkin, or two medium pumpkins, or 4ish small pumpkins or several tiny pumpkins).
Dried gourd stems (from pumpkins, acorn squash, spaghetti squash, etc...)
Dried navy beans
Poly fill (pillow stuffing)
Needle and strong thread
Hot glue gun

1. Cut your fabric in desired size circle.
We used just about every round item we could think of around the house to trace our circles on the fabric.  In this photo we are using a trash can.  To give you an idea of scale, a circle of fabric 11" in diameter makes a grapefruit sized pumpkin.

2. Thread your needle, knotting the end so that the tread is 2-ply and then sew a basic stitch by hand around the edge leaving 1/4" inch lip.

3. Once you've got your stitch underway, start gathering as you go by gently pulling the thread to pleat the fabric.  Be careful not to break the thread or you'll have to start sewing all over again.

4. When you've sewn completely around the circle, hold off on gathering the last few inches of fabric until after you've filled your velvet sack with beans and poly fill.  I poured the beans in first and then used the poly fill to get the desired shape I wanted.

5. Now gently pull the thread to close the hole.

6. Sew a few stitches across the hole to make sure it is tightly closed.
Knot off your end and cut the thread.

7. Apply hot glue to the bottom of a dried gourd stem and stick it on the velvet pumpkin to cover your sewing, pressing down on the pumpkin until the glue hardens/cools.

8. Sit back and admire you're amazing creations!

Repeat this project until your heart's content.

How cute is this tiny pumpkin I made with some of the scrap fabric?

These look so great on my kitchen table.  I couldn't be more thrilled.  I've already put in an order for more stems from my parents for next year. 

I purchased all of the silk velvet for this project from the following etsy seller:

***See how I used one of my velvet pumpkins in my 2012 Spooky Halloween Mantle.

Thanks again to Laurel for figuring out how to make these and for a fun afternoon.

~The Lemonista

Linked to Feathered Nest Friday
Linked to At The Picket Fence
Linked to Show of Saturday


  1. Those are amazing! Gorgeous colours. I may have to scour the grocery stores for broken off stems in the bottom of the pumpkin crates. Thank you so much for showing how to make these!

  2. Darling! I agree, love the store bought but not the price tag....may have to give these a try!
    Visiting from Centsational Gal.
    Cathy @ Room Rx

  3. Started to comment when I realized your blog name is somewhat similar to mine... lemon-wise, anyway! Great idea, I've been sitting back and wondering how to make these for awhile. Love how you made them, and FOR SURE I'm saving my pumpkin stems this year!

  4. Such pretty pumpkins! I love the colors. They're perfect for your table.

  5. OMG!!!! You are my hero! I too fell in love with these velvet pumpkins but couldn't part with the chunk of change needed to purchase them. Your tutorial makes it look sew simple! I just need to find some stems? I'm over from Censational Girl. Thank you so much!

  6. Thanks for the tutorial... I Love Velvet Pumpkins but the retail price can be prohibitive... now that I know they're so easy, I'll be designing my own! *winks*

    Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

  7. You know, I've seen these before, but never took the notion to make them. They are so incredibly beautiful!

  8. These pumpkins are so pretty. Best tutorial I've seen on how to make them! I'd love it if you linked them to my party going on now at Project Queen.
    I've enjoyed reading your blog! I'm a new follower.

  9. Pumpkins are so cute and your tutorial makes it look so easy. Love the colors! Came over from and I'm a new follower. Would love for you to stop over to my place.

  10. Hi Erin,

    I just made some velvet pumpkins using your fabulous tutorial and I blogged about it. To see it go to:

    Thanks again!

  11. These are stunning. Thank you for sharing!

  12. I do love these pumpkins! i made some this afternoon from brocade and 1 from a cream satin. Since I didn't have any silk velvet on hand :) and couldn't wait to make them. I'm going to use sticks for the stems, or maybe some wool felted kind of a stem.... Anyway, right now they have no stems, but they will! Thanks for sharing the tutorial :)

  13. Love the colors of the velvet pumpkins ! You can find them here too:
    Happy Crafting ! :o)

  14. Thanks for the tutoria! I have been dreaming of making these since I saw them this summer on Pinterest! I bought the velvet today- wish me luck!

  15. I just say WOOW:....this is a great job :)
    and do not miss....




    it is FUN , last week 102 lovley blogs :)
    Håkan ( The Roseman)

  16. Loving your pumpkins!! Looking forward to your posts, new follower.

    Margaret (Moving Forward)

  17. I am happily featuring your tutorial on my blog, Monday, Sept. 30th. I hope you will have a minute to stop by! Lovely!!

  18. thanks for sharing they are very beautiful

  19. LOVING THEM! thank you for sharing!! :)

  20. Awesome pumpkins. They sell the stems on etsy and other places.

  21. I was just killing time browsing pinterest when I came across this...amazing! I too was not willing to pay the price but I think I can do make it look so simple. I am going to follow you now. Thanks.

  22. I also fell in love with these beauties when I saw them at a store, but the price was ridiculous! I studied them and said to myself, hmmm I can make these and for almost nothing. I find fabric at thrift stores and the stuffing. I add rice to the bottom for weight. I have my family save pumpkin stems.

  23. I also fell in love with these beauties when I saw them at a store, but the price was ridiculous! I studied them and said to myself, hmmm I can make these and for almost nothing. I find fabric at thrift stores and the stuffing. I add rice to the bottom for weight. I have my family save pumpkin stems.