H is for Holidays: Four Fun No-Carve Pumpkin Ideas
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Every year our early childhood center sends home a small pumpkin for each child with the request that we spend time together decorating them as a family. The only rule is that the pumpkin cannot be carved. It has been fun coming up with unique ideas using all kinds of craft materials. The school puts them on display for the week before Halloween and through the class parties. We have seen some amazingly creative ideas. Today I will share with you four fun no-carve pumpkin ideas that we have made in years past. Here we go:
“Girlie” Ghost Footprint Pumpkin
This “girlie” ghost footprint pumpkin was the first no-carve pumpkin that we created when Ava was about 16 months old. I started by giving the pumpkin two coats of bright pink acrylic paint and letting it dry thoroughly. The next step is to add the ghosts. I again used acrylic paint, this time in white. I painted the bottoms of Ava’s feet using a foam brush and quickly but firmly pressed them against the pumpkin to leave a footprint. I made them all the way around the pumpkins which required 4-5 footprints. I have made a lot of hand and footprint art with my kiddos and pretty much have it down to a science. To learn more about my tips and techniques, visit my Bunny Footprint Art post or Handprint Fireworks post.
Once the ghost footprints had dried thoroughly, I added the simple mouth and nose using a permanent marker. Next I glued a tiny ribbon bow to the top of each ghost head. The glitter polka dots were sprinkled around the pumpkin between ghosts using glue dots and green metallic glitter. Be sure your paint is VERY dry before applying the glitter. The idea is that you will be able to brush away all stray glitter and that it will only adhere to the glue dots. The finishing touch was to tie some bright green curling ribbon around the stem. Pretty cute, huh? We received a lot of positive feedback about this one.
Silly Pink Glitter Monkey
Our next attempt at a no-carve pumpkin was this silly pink glitter monkey pumpkin. My original inspiration came from this pin on Pinterest – because this is only an image and does not link to any instructions, we made it up as we went a long. It looks to me like the original monkey parts were made out of craft foam, but I just cut the ears, mouth, eyes and curly tail out of an old cereal box. Next I painted them all with pink acrylic paint, except for the eyes which we painted white. It took a couple coats of paint to achieve full coverage and I made sure to let them dry thoroughly in between coats of paint. I added the pupils, nostrils and smiles using a black permanent marker. We glittered the outside edges of the ears and the entire tail using a thin coat of craft glue and shiny pink glitter. Of course, the glittering was the best part of this project for Miss Ava! After all the pieces and parts were good and dry, it was time to attach them to the pumpkin using hot glue. The ears and tail were tricky to keep attached as they need to stand upright so I reinforced them from the back using push pins. You can’t see the push pins from the front and they really gave the ears and tail some extra staying power. This guy had loads of personality and just made us smile every time we saw him!
Fancy Frozen Pumpkin with Crown
Last year’s no-carve masterpiece was this fancy Frozen pumpkin with a paper crown. We started by painting the pumpkin white using acrylic paint. After that was dry, we applied several coats of turquoise glitter paint until we had the effect we wanted. Ava was very excited about this process! Once the paint was completely dry, I let Ava go to town with several sheets of peel and stick rhinestones that I picked up at the local craft store for a few bucks. She was in her glory. Glitter paint and rhinestones? Oh, my!!!
When everything was good and dry, we added a fancy paper crown leftover from Ava’s Frozen birthday party earlier in the year. I found these darling printable crowns and headpieces from Printable Crush here. I discovered that you could make a small sized crown by printing it out in portrait rather landscape. The smaller size was perfect for baby sister and for dolls and stuffed animals. I added some detail to the crown with glitter glue in various colors and tied them on using strips of tulle. To use one on our Frozen pumpkin, I pulled the crown together in a circle and taped the ends together in the back. We sat it over the stem of the pumpkin and secured it with several dots of hot glue. The finishing touch to our Fancy Frozen pumpkin was to tie a pretty iridescent turquoise bow around it just under the paper crown. Voila! A pumpkin fit for an ice queen!
Simple Minnie Mouse Pumpkin
Madeleine has only had the chance to make one no-carve pumpkin so far. For her first year of pumpkin decorating, we decided to make a simple Minnie Mouse Pumpkin. I have seen many variations on this idea, but we really just stuck to the basics. We painted the top half of the pumpkin black and the bottom half of the pumpkin hot pink using acrylic paint, letting each coat of paint dry thoroughly. The ears were cut out of black cardstock. I used a circular cookie cutter to make sure both ears were the same size, but you could use a drinking glass or the opening of a jar for the same effect. I bent one edge of the circle under slightly to give me a surface to attach it to the pumpkin. I used my hot glue gun to stick them on on either side of the stem. I also used push pins behind the ears to give them added stability just like I did with the monkey pumpkin. We finished our Minnie Mouse pumpkin off with a cute little hot pink polka dot bow. Sweet and simple!
So, there you have it … Four fun no-carve pumpkin ideas. Which style is your favorite? We had so much fun making all of them, it is hard for me to decide which one I like the best. I am looking forward to this year as my girls are a little older and can be more involved in planning and making their pumpkins. It is time to put my thinking cap on and get the creative ideas flowing. Do you have any great no-carve pumpkin ideas? I would love to hear from you in the comments. I hope you are inspired to do some no-carve pumpkin decorating of your own this year. Happy Halloween!
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