31 Days of Shut Up and Sew: Fabric Pumpkins

Thursday, October 4, 2012

In today's installment of Shut Up and Sew, I'm attempting...

I couldn't let this whole month of sewing projects pass by without at least a hint of fall/Halloween thrown in there.  October is my most favorite month, after all!

18" x 6" piece of fabric (for small pumpkin)
21" x 9" piece of fabric (for large pumpkin)
Felt for stems
Matching embroidery floss

45 minutes (could be longer or shorter, depending on how frustrating your fiberfill decides to be)

First things first, set your machine's straight stitch to as long as possible (mine goes up to 4.8... 2.5 is the standard length).

Then sew a quick straight stitch along both of the long edges, making sure to leave a few inches of thread at each end.  Do not backstitch at the beginning or end!!

When you've stitched both sides (the more imperfect the better in my opinion, so just push down on that pedal and go go go!), pull on your bobbin thread and slide your fabric down the thread to create a ruffled effect.

Do this for both edges, until you have this diaper/baby bloomer looking thing.

Then match up the ends that you haven't yet stitched, right sides together, and sew them to create a tube.  Make sure to backstitch on this seam!

Now, there are probably better ways to do this next part that probably require some hand sewing, but I loathe hand sewing (I'm really terrible at it) so I just took one of my ruffled ends and gave it a rough zig zag stitch so it would stay together and create a little pouch.

Then you want to turn it right side out.  Only one end should be open at this point.

Stuff your pumpkin pouch with as much fiberfill as it will hold!

Before we sew the top closed, we want to make a little felt stem.  I just cut a rough rectangle of brown felt, made a triangle at one end...

...folded it over again...

...and hand stitched it together.  Cut off any extra felt you may have left.

Now comes the hardest part of this whole project... stitching it closed to make it actually look like a pumpkin!  First I tried to use regular ol' thread but that didn't work at all so I switched to embroidery floss which worked like a charm.  Stick your felt stem in the opening, then sew it closed vertically to make it look more pumpkin-esque.  Does that make sense?  Wait a sec and I'll try to explain it a little better.

Turn your pumpkin over and push your needle through the bottom...

...and back out the top and pull tight.  Keep doing this all the way around until it's more of a pumpkin shape.  Tie a knot in the embroidery floss when you decide you're done.  Also, if you want, you can add little dimples with your embroidery floss.  Just instead of going bottom-top-top-bottom when you're stitching, do bottom-top-bring thread around-bottom top.  Okay, so this is really hard to explain...

Add a little felt leaf if you can't figure out how to get the opening all the way closed and have it still look like a pumpkin.  Shh... it's our little secret. :)

Which one do you like better?  Dimples or no dimples?  I think they're both adorbs.

What I Learned
Fabric pumpkins are really forgiving because there's no exact science.  Just keep stitching until it looks right to you.  Imperfection is welcome.  Also, use embroidery floss when you need something to hold its shape because it's super strong.

To read all 31 Days of Shut Up and Sew, click here.


  1. Adorable!

    <3 Christina at I Gotta Create!
    Wildly Original Linky party is open!

  2. so cute. i've seen a lot of fabric pumpkins this year but these seems super easy, even for me! :)

    We're starting back up our weekly link parties and I would love for you to stop by and link up. We are giving away a $25 gift card to Hobby Lobby to one lucky featured blogger too! :)