Thursday, October 1, 2020

~ DIY : How to Make Velvet Pumpkins Plush & Pretty Fall Decorating - Tutorial

DIY Velvet Pumpkins Tutorial. The Decorated House . How to make these pretty and plush velvet pumpkins.

I think the lovely velvet pumpkins are still a wonderful
addition to our Fall decorating. The instructions that I posted a
while ago is still one of the easiest ones to make.
Although I have seen some highly embellished, and some
imported ones of China or wherever, to me to the simplest handcrafted ones
you can make yourself are still the nicest.

 How to Make Plush and Pretty Velvet Pumpkins:

It's getting to be that time of year again! Here is an early Fall Project 
you can make now, and use through Thanksgiving. 
You can find so many tutorials for making these pretty velvet pumpkins, it didn't seem necessary to write another one in great detail with step by step pictures.  Pinterest has lots of examples for DIY pumpkins and they are mostly the same. I have a bit different way of making them and I'm going to share that with you along with some finished pictures of course!
It was tough finding velvet when I made these! I guess there just isn't much demand. The type of fabric the companies use who make these commercially, and sell for big bucks, is silk velvet. You can order it online, if you cannot find it in the store. But one of the fabric stores had a nice stretch velvet in cream, off-white which was mainly what I wanted anyway, and that is what I used.

DIY . How to make Pretty and Plush Velvet Pumpkins. Tutorial The Decorated House

Close up of Stem and Ruching Details.

Inside my pumpkin is one of those cheap dollar pumpkins. Those things are pretty ugly. They are easy to spot because they have  bulky seam running across them. Unless you decorate them in some way to cover it, they always look odd. However, used as the inside center  of my new velvet pumpkin they work great!

Here is my method of a less floppy pumpkin. But it is equally as plush!

1.  Start with a cheap faux pumpkin, and cut a circle from your fabric to cover the whole thing, plus some extra for the bulk that you are going to add. Remember you can always cut it smaller, but you can't make it bigger once it is cut.

2.  Some of the more expensive velvet pumpkins have plastic (doll making) pellets inside.  This is not my choice if there are kids or dogs around who might get them.

The best alternative that I found is to use beans instead. I used dried lentils and dried black beans. Both were equally good for this purpose. You can find large, very inexpensive bags of beans at both costco and bj's.

3.  Put your faux pumpkin in a plastic bag; I used a gallon size zip lock bag.  Then cut off the zip part of the bag,  and tape the folds of the edge of the bag up around the pumpkin to a more round shape so that the bag will lay more flatly against the pumpkin. But leave the bag open enough to put in the beans.

4.  Now fill up the between the plastic bag, and around the pumpkin, with the beans. Move them around so that you have a layer of beans all around the pumpkin.

Then tie up the plastic bag with a baggie tie around the pumpkin and the beans.

5. Take the circle of fabric, and sew a simple basting stick about 1/4 inch from the edge all the way around. Use a double thread so you when you pull, it will be less likely to break.

6. Gather the thread around the edge, making a sack or bag for the pumpkin. Leave it open enough so that the pumpkin will fit inside.

7.  Put the bean-bag-pumpkin inside the center, and continue pulling the gathering thread until it is closed and then sew it from side to side to close it tight. Now you will have a lovely ruching at the top which you can adjust after you tie off the thread.

8.  Now you can play with the beans and pinch the velvet and beans to make ribs.

9.  Hot glue, or regular glue, a real pumpkin stem on the velvet pumpkin. Be sure that has been thoroughly dried. (Do not store real pumpkin stems you collect and dry in a plastic bag unless they are very, very dry, or they will mildew.)

So now you can see that by doing your pumpkins this way they have a little different look. I like to make pretty ribs, and have them stay that way.

The stem is real, but I dry brushed some lime green on it instead of leaving it all brown. See the previous post for how to make a really pretty stem from air-dry clay.

The Decorated House :: How to make Pretty and Plush Velvet Pumpkins

You'll notice that my pumpkin is not floppy. It holds it shape exactly. If you want a floppy version, most of the tutorials I found make them so.  Some used polyester batting inside and nothing that holds the shape like the faux pumpkin and the beans. Those can be nice as well, it just  wasn't the look I was after.

See Y'All Soon~


  1. Beautiful, Donna! I love how this turned out. It looks so fairy tale-like ~ makes me think of Cinderella! : )

    1. Hey Kathy, Nice to see you. Hmm.... Pat thinks it has a Cinderella feeling too! I think that's just fine. :)

  2. Elegant! I love this in white. Did you use a faux silk leaf? Your photo does remind me of Cinderella! :)

    Thanks so much for sharing ~


    1. Hi Pat,
      Yes, it is a faux silk leaf. It's one that I had stashed away and can be bent to shape to look more realistic. It adds a nice little touch to the all white pumpkin.

  3. This must be the very best velvet pumpkin there is! I love the photo, it looks like a painting. Is it photo edited?

    1. Hello Pamela,
      Thank you! Yes, the photo has some editing. It was taken out on my porch with nice sunlight so there wasn't much to do other than lightening some shadows. After it was reduced in size, I usually do a sharpen to return a little crispness to the details.

  4. Very Beautiful and Elegant!! We love the photo!!
    María and María Inés

  5. Beautiful! I am going out to get some supplies today.
    Also, where did you get the little silver crown you have in some of your other fall posts? I am a crown lover and collector.
    Thanks for sharing!

  6. Hi Laney, I found a set of those little crowns several years ago at an "antique" shop although they are not that old. I use them a lot just because I love them and they add a little extra pretty to the decor.

    1. Thanks for your response. I will continue the hunt!
      Let me know if you ever see a place for something similiar.
      Thanks so much for sharing! Love your posts!

  7. Donna

    These are the most beautiful examples I have seen! I am posting to my facebook page!!

    1. Hello Cindy,
      So happy to you like the velvet pumpkins. Thanks for stopping by.

  8. Okay, you know how I love velvet pumpkins and THESE are truly lovely! White is my fave too! Beautifully executed.

    1. Oh yes, I was admiring your lovely pumpkins and was happy at least I had a couple of my own. So nice to see you, thanks for coming by.

  9. Love your little white velvet pumpkin! So glamorous the way you have it displayed and thanks for the tutorial.
    Happy Autumn

  10. Donna,
    Total elegance, dear friend!!!
    Thanks for sharing the "how~to's" for making our own Velvet Pumpkins!!!

  11. Beautiful but I am confused. By faux pumpkin do you mean one of those cheap plastic ones at a craft store, etc. ? And if so how do you get a beanbag effect if you fill the pumpkin and then put fabric around it? Not understanding the whole plastic bag thing either. So sorry that I may seem dense. I am an old woman and just can't picture it.
    Thank you.

  12. Hi ~ Yes, the "faux pumpkin" is the very inexpensive foam ones that you can find at craft stores or even the dollar store has them in the smaller size.
    The foam pumpkin is at the very center, giving it the shape. You put that in the plastic bag so that the beans will be all around it and not fall out. When you pull the fabric up around the plastic bag, the beans and the faux pumpkin are in the middle of all of it.
    I used the bag with the beans around the foam pumpkin so it would not as floppy as just filling the fabric up with beans or pellets. It gives you a sturdy looking pumpkin but very plush.
    Hope that helps! Donna
    So from the center out you have, foam pumpkin, beans, plastic bag, then the fabric.

  13. You are placing the beans between the faux pumpkin and the plastic bag? What keeps them in place?

  14. Yes, the beans are inside the bag next to the pumpkin. The beans almost fill the space you made when you put the plastic bag around the pumpkin. They stay around the pumpkin, but you can moved them to make it look like ribs in the pumpkin if you wish. If they move out of place, like falling to one side from storage, you just push them around from the outside of the velvet. Like you could with a bean bag toy. They stay in place as long as their are enough beans in the bag.


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