It’s time to decorate for the fall (or at least I probably should have started, I’m a little behind) and I love using ‘evergreen’ decor! What does ‘evergreen’ mean? It means you can use it from year to year, it’s not disposable. I like that concept for a few reasons. 1) I don’t have to spend money on new decor 2) I don’t even have to leave my house to decorate for holiday (except of course going out to decorate the outside of the house 3) I know what I have from year to year 4) I get to create something fun! 5) It is easy to do! So today I am going to show you a little, stuffed, fabric pumpkin that I affectionately call, “Plumpkin”. It is easy, quick, doesn’t require a ton of supplies and can be done by hand or by sewing machine.
● Fabric – approximately 9″ x 22″ for a standard size, you can do whatever you want to make many sizes, just make sure it is a rectangle
● Sewing Needle or Sewing Machine
● Stuffing – Polyester fiber fill is good, you can fill it with whatever you want…
● Yarn or Embroidery Floss
● Yarn Needle – prefer metal with a large eye
● Item to Use for Stem – Tree branch, Cinnamon Stick, Paper Covered Floral Wire, etc.
● Optional – something to look like vines or whatever you want to make it look great! (raffia, ribbon, paper covered wire all work well)
With the right sides of the fabric together (the less pretty side should be out), line up the fabric with the short ends together.
Thread a needle with the thread doubled. See here if you are not familiar with that technique. Sew in about a half inch from the cut edge, with stitches running parallel to the edge. This is called the Running Stitch. If you need some help, use this video.
When you get to the end of the seam, use some securing stitches so the thread stays in place. (Securing Stitch – Take a tiny stitch right over where you ended but don’t pull the thread all the way taut, have the needle go through the loop that is made. Repeat this twice.)
Take a new knotted thread and use a running stitch about 1/2 down on one end of the fabric cylinder’s edges, parallel to the edge. This will become the bottom of the pumpkin.
Finish sewing around top of fabric cylinder. Keep stitching until you reach the point you started at.
After you’ve pulled the thread to gather up and close the hole, repeat those securing stitches. Since you have been sewing on the wrong side, flip the piece so that the right side is facing out.
When chosing your stem, place it all the way down to the bottom of the pumpkin. Then put the edges down in towards the stem so you can see if you like the stem. I always look at things before they are secured or glued down or stitched down to make sure I like it!
When you have the ‘stem’ inserted, we are going to stitch around the top edge again to secure the stem and the stuffing inside the pumpkin. Using the same method, sew a running stitch around the fabric, about 1/2 inch down from the top edge.
Use some securing stitches here, as many as you feel you need. It will not be super tight, just make sure you are comfortable with how tightly it is secured.
Here is where we need the yarn needle. Cut off a long length of yarn or embroidery floss imagine going around a pumpkin a few times and that’s how much you want. It will end up using less than you probably cut, but we need it to be longer so it can go in and out of the pumpkin.
We are going to give the pumpkin its segmentmented or ‘ribbed’ look. Starting at the top, take your threaded yarn needle and push it down through the pumpkin following the path of the stem to the bottom center of the pumpkin. Bring the yarn needle through the hole you created when you sewed up the bottom earlier. This is a pain in the butt. You just have to keep going. Just Keep Sewing, Just Keep Sewing…
When pulling the yarn through the bottom of the pumpkin, make sure you leave a few inches of a tail sticking out the top, we will need it for later. (Alternatively, you can make a massive knot to get stuck in the polyester fiber fill so it stays hidden, but that method isn’t as predictable)
I like to cover the fabric seam with a strand of yarn, makes it disappear! Keep repeating that process for as many segments as you would like. It certainly gives the pumpkins a different look if there are 4 segments vs 8 segments.
Here is where you can get creative or just messy. The yarn needs to be secured, the bottom of the pumpkin is not going to be seen, so do what you have to do to make it secure. I have at times had to wrap the yarn around the stem to secure it more. Do whatever you think is necessary!
Here are a few pumpkins from previous years. I think I like my green stripey fabric the best It just looks so realistic!
They can be as simple or as fancy as you like!