I may have mentioned this before, but it’s worth repeating– I love the fall. Love, love, love. The cool crisp air, the rich autumn colors, apple picking, back to school, the sense of impending hibernation… and of course, pumpkins. They’re way up there in my list of favorite fall foods, to be sure, but also favorite home decal. So a patchwork-pumpkin hybrid? Well it doesn’t get much better in my book…
I stitched these babies up a few days ago, right before my second move (From temporary home #1 to my parents house, where I’m having the most wonderful family-filled holiday weekend. The final move is on Tuesday. Man I’m portable these days). It really only took a few hours, and I love the combination of simple machine stitching and decorative handwork. Go ahead, give ‘em a go…
… and short squat.
For a short squat pumpkin, this one:
1. Create a cardboard template of your oval and cut out six ovals from fabrics in colors of your choice. You could cut out six different colors, or use just two colors and cut out three ovals from each. Simply trace around your oval template, and cut out along the traced line.
2. Sew together two of the ovals along their long curved edge. Use a 1/4″ seam allowance and start and stop 1/4″ before the tip of the ovals.
3. Continue sewing on ovals in this manner. It’ll look a little funky, like a deflated beach ball.
4. Once you have sewn all six ovals, sew the remaining edges of the first and last oval together. Then stuff your pumpkin. Put in enough stuffing so you have a nice, filled out pumpkin. Then slip stitch the opening closed with a thread color that matches one of the fabric oval colors that you’re stitching. Don’t worry about the tops and bottoms where the seams meet; you’ll be covering up both of these areas.
6. Make your stem. Trace a stem shape onto the back side of a piece of brown flannel. I just drew this free-hand, approximately 3″ tall and 1 1/2″ wide at the bottom. Layer this marked piece of flannel on top of another piece of flannel, right sides facing, and cut out around the drawn line, cutting through both pieces of flannel and leaving about a 1/4″ margin.
7. Stitch along the marking, leaving the bottom open. Turn the stem inside out, and stuff. Make a leaf in the same manner, drawing an oval that’s approximately 3″ long. Leave enough unstitched at the edge of the oval so you can turn the leaf inside out as well, but don’t stuff the leaf.
8. Using gold/light brown pearl cotton thread, stitch the leaf veins onto the leaf. I found it easy to stitch through just the top layer of the leaf, but you could stitch through both.
10. Slip stitch the stem and leaf to the top of the pumpkin. Insert the open, unstitched segment of the leaf underneath the stem, and catch it as you slip stitch. I went around the base of the stem twice, once stitching the stem to the leaf top, and the second time stitching the leaf bottom to the pumpkin.
11. Cut out a small circle from your brown flannel. No need to measure exactly, about 2″ in diameter. Slip stitch the circle to the bottom of the pumpkin where the seams intersect, tucking under the edge of the circle as you stitch.
Fini! You now have marvelous autumnal decor that you can reuse every year. I feel like these would look lovely on a mantelpiece, bookshelf, even by a fireplace. Hand-stitched, homemade, and totally fall.
Go ahead and make a whole patch of them (my little collection is now available on My Etsy Store).