Wait until you see how easy it is to make these cute painted pumpkins. Now, you may not think you need a tutorial on how to paint pumpkins but let me tell you that my first attempt was a disaster. Why? Because I forgot a crucial step in the process. I went back and corrected my mistake but that took time that I wasn't planning on taking.
If you don't want to waste your time painting pumpkins the wrong way, I suggest you read on so you can get it right first time!
These pretty painted pumpkins are a bit more glamorous than your usual Halloween pumpkin. They would make fabulous table centrepieces for an adult Halloween dinner party or wedding.
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A quick reminder
When attempting any DIY project, please take care to undertake the necessary safety precautions. You should always follow the manufacturer's safety recommendations when using any product or tool. When following my instructions for a DIY project, you are doing so at your own risk.
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Now that's out of the way, let's get on with the post
Cute painted pumpkins – ideas for a pretty fall table!
Supplies needed for cute painted pumpkins
- Mod Podge sealer or spray
- Acrylic paints in black and white and gold
- Paintbrushes (not too soft)
- Stencil brush or sponge
- Stencil (I got my stencil here)
- Surface protection
- Paper plates (optional)
- A sheet of absorbent kitchen towel
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Choose healthy pumpkins
The first step is to choose healthy unblemished pumpkins. This may seem obvious but where I come from, we mostly buy our pumpkins from stalls at the side of the road where the pumpkins are fresh from the fields. They are usually still covered in mud so it's sometimes hard to tell whether there is a blemish underneath. Try to remove any caked-on dirt so you can see if there is a soft spot or bruising underneath it.
Don't choose pumpkins which have obvious dents in them and try to get them with a decent amount of stalk left on.
Protect your work surface
Before painting pumpkins, you should lay something over your work surface to protect it from paint drips. I popped each pumpkin on a paper plate so that I could turn them more easily and covered my table with a small piece of cloth.
Wash the pumpkins
Next up, you need to make sure that your pumpkins are clean and dry. Wash them with warm soapy water until all the dirt is gone and wipe them dry. You can't paint or stencil pumpkins if there is still dust or dirt on them because the paint won't stick and will just flake off.
How do you get paint to stick to pumpkins?
It's a good idea to seal the pumpkins with clear lacquer or sealer before painting them. My first attempt at painting pumpkins was a complete disaster because I forgot to seal the pumpkin first. When it was dry, the paint just flaked off – you don't want that to happen!
I wasted so much time and that's why I'm telling you to get yourself some sealer before you start to paint and stencil your pretty painted pumpkins.
I used Mod Podge all-in-one lacquer and glue to seal my pumpkins which dries to a transparent finish.
Paint the pumpkins in two sessions. First seal the tops of the pumpkins, (including the stalk) allow to dry completely and then, turn them over and seal the bottoms with Mod Podge.
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What paints to use to paint pumpkins?
Acrylic paints work well for me, poster paint, not so much! I painted the black pumpkin with poster straight onto the pumpkin but the paint flaked off once it was dry. The white pumpkin was painted with acrylic paint which didn't flake at all so I guess there's a clear winner.
Paint the pumpkins
Once the Mod Podge is completely dry all over, it's time to start painting the pumpkins. I gave my large pumpkin two good coats of black paint and then did the same with the smaller pumpkin which I painted white.
Use the same method as you did with the Mod Podge, paint one side of the pumpkins, allow to dry, turn them over and paint the other side. Allow to dry completely.
Repeat the painting process as needed. I gave my pumpkins two layers of paint.
Seal the paint on the pumpkins
Paint another layer of Mod Podge sealer over the whole of the pumpkins to seal the paint before stencilling.
How to use a stencil to make cute painted pumpkins
Elegant black and gold glam pumpkin
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I didn't use stencil adhesive to stick the stencil to the black pumpkin because I was afraid it might take some of the paint off with it when I removed it.
Just hold the stencil in place on the pumpkin with one hand and dab the paint on with the other. You will still need to hold the stencil in place while you work. The pumpkin is round and uneven, so it probably won't hold your stencil in place all over as it would if you were to apply the stencil to a flat surface.
Pour some of the gold paint onto a paper plate or a paint mixing pallet. Gently dip your stencil into the paint and dab most of it off onto the paper plate.
If you add too much paint to your stencil brush, it will bleed underneath the stencil and your cute pumpkin design will be spoiled.
Starting at the top, dab the paint onto the pumpkin through the stencil, reapplying where necessary. Continue until you have covered the entire stencil with paint. A great tutorial for using stencils can be found in my post 'How to paint and stencil furniture with chalk paint'.
Gently peel away the stencil so as not to smudge the paint.
Pretty white and gold painted pumpkin
Use a pencil to hand-draw your design of choice onto your painted pumpkin.
Paint over your design with gold paint.
Seal your cute painted pumpkins
Now, all that's left to do is to seal your pretty painted pumpkins. You can use the same method as above for this. I used a spray sealer which is quick and easy to use.
If you use a paint sealing spray or lacquer to seal the pumpkins, make sure to use it outdoors or in a well-ventilated room. Always follow the instructions of use on any crafting materials. You may also need to wear a respirator and goggles. As I say, read and adhere to the instructions and you should be good to go.
Let your cute painted pumpkins dry completely. I sprayed my pumpkins outside in the garden and let them sit outside on the porch for a couple of hours.
There you have it - cute painted pumpkins – ideas for a pretty fall table.
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How long will my cute painted pumpkins last?
These pretty painted pumpkins last much longer than carved pumpkins. The paint and varnish or sealer will also help to repel moisture and protect the surface which will help your elegant painted pumpkin last for weeks.
I hope you like these ideas for cute painted pumpkins. Have you ever tried to paint pretty pumpkins like these before? If so what kind of design did you use? Let me know in the comments below and maybe I'll have a go at that next year!