These DIY fabric pumpkins are the most adorable home decor item for fall. Whether you’re looking to jazz up your mantle or add a new texture or color to your centerpiece, making fabric pumpkins from old wool socks is one of our favorite holiday crafts this year.
The beauty of autumn compels me to celebrate with decorations. But rather than head out to the shops and buy all-new decor, I like to consider what materials I already have in my home that can be repurposed:
- An earth-toned mug that could hold some snipped mums from the garden
- A stack of autumn-hued, vintage books that could be arranged in an artful display
- A few old socks missing their mates that can be made into little pumpkins
Why not take a tour through the sock drawers in the house and collect all those that seem to have lost their original purpose? Then, follow along with me as I show you how to make a new creation out of them.
- Old sock, big enough to cut out a 7 inch tube
- Spool of jute string or twine
- Spool of embroidery thread in a complementary color to your sock
- Long embroidery needle (about 5 inches)
- Fiberfill (you will need a good handful per pumpkin; a 10-oz bag would make several pumpkins)
- Glue gun and glue stick
CREATE THE BASIC PUMPKIN FORM
- Lay your sock flat, and measure 7 inches from the open end of the sock. Cut your sock at that measurement so that you have a fabric tube that is 7 inches long.
- Turn the sock inside out and tie one end firmly closed with a piece of jute string.
- Turn the sock right side out again and stuff with fiberfill to make a roundish shape that is full but not too firmly packed (leave 1.5-2 inches unstuffed).
- Take the spool of jute/twine and tie the open end shut tightly leaving about 1.5 inches of sock above the closure for the stem. Knot the twine and put a tiny dab of hot glue on the knot to hold in place (do not cut the twine from the spool, as you will continue to use more to make the stem).
MAKE THE STEM
- With the twine attached to the base of the stem and the spool in hand, wrap the twine tightly around the 1.5 inch of remaining sock. Once you have created the cylindrical twine stem, add another dab of glue to hold in place before you attempt the top of the stem (do not yet snip the twine).
- To finish the stem, add hot glue to the very end of the stem and carefully (do not burn yourself) spiral the thread from the outside in to cover the tip of the stem and finally snip the spool free.
CREATE THE PUMPKIN’S GROOVES
- Thread your needle with an arm’s length piece of embroidery thread and add a few knots to the end.
- Insert your needle and thread into the bottom of your pumpkin and draw it back out again, tucking the knot into the grooves of the sock to hide it.
- Bring the thread up and around the outside of the pumpkin. Insert the needle into the pumpkin just at the base of the stem and pull it down through to the bottom of the pumpkin. Pull this outside-inside loop tight to form the first groove and tie a knot at the base of the pumpkin. Repeat this process on the opposite side of your sock to form the second groove. Continue until you have as many grooves as you like for your pumpkin. (There are six grooves in the pumpkins pictured.)
Now that your sock pumpkin is essentially complete, you can leave it as-is or consider adding some embellishments to the top.
- A simple twine bow is a sweet touch (see pumpkins pictured).
- A curvy piece of grapevine or a spiraled piece of wire at the stem of your pumpkin will give it texture.
- Some felt or dried leaves can be added at the base of the stem to add a hint of rusticity.
- A leaf-shaped piece of cardstock with your family members’ names would easily turn these pumpkins into placeholders for the Thanksgiving table.
Repurposing socks into pumpkins is kind to the planet, easy on the wallet, and not insignificantly, a nod to our Ultimate Repurposer who can make all things new again.
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