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Topic: Easy Handkerchief Pumpkins  (Read 639 times)
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« on: October 14, 2019 01:57:26 PM »

This weekend some friends and I made handkerchief pumpkins! We had a ton of fun, and they make quick, adorable fall decorations for any reason. Inexpensive handkerchiefs are easy to come by (ours came from Wal-Mart and Hobby Lobby), although you could absolutely use cute cuts of any fabric you wanted. The tutorial we used just said to make sure that the fabric length is twice the width, and you can then make any size of pumpkin you want. I made three different sizes. My largest fabric piece was about 18" x 9" and the finished pumpkin was about 5-6" across.

For my pumpkins, since I plan to keep them out all season, I wanted colors that reminded me of actual pumpkin colors, so I have orange (traditional pumpkins), white (snowball pumpkins), and a kind of blue/teal (Cinderella pumpkins). Each standard size handkerchief makes at least two pumpkins, but more if you want tiny ones.

After cutting the fabric into appropriately sized strips, I sewed the short ends together to make tubes, for all of them (my friends dont machine sew, so I brought mine and did all the seams quickly to start out). I used a small hem (just the size of my presser foot).

Next, we used 3 strands of embroidery floss to run a loose gathering stitch around one end of each tube, about inch from the cut edge of the fabric. Then, we gathered it tightly, took a few securing stitches, and then tied it off. This will be the bottom of the pumpkin.

Here are my three adorable pumpkin pouches, ready for their squishy innards!

At this point, its time to stuff them. I stuffed mine quite thoroughly, which resulted in wonderfully poofy, rounded pumpkins, which I liked. If you want flatter pumpkins, which my friends went for, just stuff them a little less.

To close your pumpkin, sew another running stitch row on the open edge, about a inch from the cut edge, push the stuffing down out of the way, and then pull the mouth of the tube closed. I used my fingers to push the raw fabric edge in as I gathered it, but youll add a stem over this later, anyway.

I forgot to take actual sewing pictures of this step, but the pictures show your aim. Taking a long length of full embroidery floss (all 6 strands), tie a thick knot and bring the thread up from the bottom all the way through the pumpkin, then wrap the thread around the outside of the pumpkin, and bring it back into the bottom and through to the top. Pull that loop tight, until you like how gathered its made the segment. To make a familiarly shaped pumpkin, made 6 loops total, evenly spaced around your pumpkin. Some of the pumpkins we made only had 5 loops, which is also cute, but requires more tweaking to get them to lay evenly around the shape. Two extra tips: doll-making needles are the best for this step, because they dont get lost inside the pumpkin; make your first outside loop over the seam line, which will pull it tight and hide it completely.

For stems, vines, etc. we used pipe cleaners. In the future, I may keep an eye out for cute sticks that would make cool stems, but for now I am happy with these. I used a fluffy brown pipe cleaner wrapped around a pen to make the stems. I used a slightly thinner green pipe cleaner cut in half and wrapped much more loosely to add a little pumpkin vine for each. At this point, you can hot glue (or fabric glue) to secure the stems more permanently. For mine, since I might display them stacked sometimes, I left my stems unglued, which also will make them easier to store in my fall decoration box!

And here they are! I love that they are pretty universal fall decorations, but you could of course dress them up for Halloween by adding cute little felt facial features to turn them into Jack o Lanterns! Go forth and make festive gourds!

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« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2019 03:11:07 PM »

Super freakin' cute!  Well done.  And thanks for the tutorial.  Smiley

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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2019 04:05:54 PM »

Love the use of the bandanas! Thanks for the tutorial too!
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« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2019 04:19:22 PM »

these are really cute! thanks for posting the tutorial.
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« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2019 08:23:04 AM »

Cute! I made these for a Craftster Quickies video a few years ago. Yours turned out so pretty! I love the colors.

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« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2019 04:51:29 PM »

These are so unique!

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« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2019 11:59:28 AM »

That is so clever! And they turned out great too, really fantastic looking and unique.

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« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2019 12:48:32 PM »

Thank you all SO MUCH! Cheesy I'm currently in training for a new job position at work, and it is eating my life. I am so behind on everything I do for fun or relaxation... I'm so glad you all enjoyed the pictures, and I hope to see new adorable pumpkins start showing up in all sorts of different cool fabrics! Grin

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« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2019 01:36:08 PM »

Lovely and nice tutorial - Can I have the blue one?

« Reply #9 on: October 23, 2019 10:58:23 AM »

Ha! Thanks, Averia. Wink No, but you can easily make one! I think that blue bandana came from Hobby Lobby.

Crafter, sewist, costumer, doll maker, baker and cake decorator, reader, collector, all-purpose nerd...
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