How to Decorate Mini Pumpkins (Pumpkin Decorating Ideas)

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The change of season inspires me to create beautiful fall decorations and to decorate mini pumpkins accented with fall accents. It is easy to find mini pumpkins, gourds, and decorative corn at grocery and craft stores to use to make festive fall displays. Click here to learn how to make 5 DIY Fall Centerpiece Ideas showing how to decorate with mini pumpkins, decorative corn, leaves and natural branches. The fall centerpieces and accents show what to do with mini pumpkins for fall decor.

Some of my favorite DIY projects I created are Fall and Halloween Decorations. I like to incorporated mini pumpkin decorating ideas in my designs because they are so much fun to paint and embellish using small accents.

Watch my step-by-step tutorial on how to decorate mini pumpkins for fall.

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When I first started to decorate mini pumpkins, I used them for Halloween accents, and then after Halloween, I transformed them into Fall and Thanksgiving decor. The pumpkins I used for Halloween were real and I decorated them by drawing a jack-o-lantern face on the front with a Sharpie and attaching frayed corn husks around the stem to give them a harvest design. Here is my Halloween TV segment where I teach the hosts how to decorate mini pumpkins for Halloween

After Halloween, I use the same pumpkins and painted them with metallic golds and bronze acrylic paint giving them an elegant fall design. Here is my Thanksgiving TV segment where I show these painted pumpkins for Thanksgiving.

Real Painted Mini Pumpkins


Real Painted Pumpkins Thanksgiving Decorations

I have been asked how do I get paint to stick to the pumpkin. I have never had a problem with paint sticking to real or foam pumpkins because I always use the same paint that I trust for all of my craft projects.

Here’s how I paint a mini pumpkin and the best paint for pumpkins. I use the same paint for both real and foam  pumpkins. For a real pumpkin, I wash the pumpkin with water to remove any dirt or residue and let it dry. I either spray paint the pumpkin with metallic paint and let it dry thoroughly before I decorate or I paint the pumpkin with Multi-Surface acrylic paint in metallic colors. I usually paint two coats to give them a fully covered look.

Painted real mini pumpkins are a beautiful decoration, but the paint does not preserve them. They will only last about a month or so before they need to be discarded. It makes me sad that I need to throw them away because they were so pretty and it would have been nice to save them for the following year.

Decorated Real Mini Pumpkins

I decided to purchase artificial mini pumpkins so they could be saved after the fall decorating season and displayed year after year. These painted pumpkins make excellent fall decorations and would look nice incorporated into a fall centerpiece. They would also and look great on a Thanksgiving table as placeholders or a decorative accent.

Decorated Artificial Mini Pumpkins

Here is how to make my mini pumpkin painting ideas using artificial pumpkins, accented with leaves and beads.

Materials for the DIY Mini Pumpkin Decorating Ideas

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How to Paint and Decorate Mini Pumpkins

Step 1:  Paint the pumpkins with a foam brush.

Step 2:  Apply two coats for full coverage. Let dry in between each coat.

Step 3:  Attach beads to the paper leaves with craft glue. Add metallic paint around the edges of the leaves with a foam brush to add dimension to the leaves.

Step 4:  Attach the leaves to the front of the pumpkins with craft glue.

Step 5: Using the Dimensional paint, draw swirls and scrollwork on the pumpkins as shown above. The dimensional paint takes a long time to dry. Avoid touching the paint until it is completely dry. I usually leave it overnight to be safe.

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