Rifle-inspired Painted Pumpkin Tutorial

When I have a DIY post scheduled I can get a little nervous. First of all, what have I done that I’m not subconsciously copying from an idea I’ve seen on Pinterest? Second of all, how much DIY time, money, and energy do I have right now? Not much. Third, am I capable of doing something someone would want to copy?!

Here’s my thought pattern on this latest project….
(While grocery shopping) I can’t forget that I need to plan my DIY post for next week. Ooh pumpkins are only $2.99. That’s a good deal. I’ll do something with pumpkins. There are some really great ideas for painting pumpkins on Pinterest! (While getting in the car) Uh-oh, I can’t do an idea I saw on Pinterest! This has to be my DIY. Besides, my boys aren’t old enough to accomplish any of those painting ideas. (While sitting on the couch a few days later) What am I going to do with these pumpkins? I don’t even really like the color orange. I love fall, just not the color scheme…. (I spot my Rifle calendar hanging on the wall.) Well I like orange in her paintings. She surrounds them with such soft colors so it’s not overwhelming. That’s it! I will paint flowers on a pumpkin! I’ve never seen it done, and I have some paints in the attic! It will make a great, cheap centerpiece for a fall tablescape!

Okay, now that you’ve been in my brain for a way too long, I’ll show you my process for this project. I have very, very little art training, and I thought it was quite easy. I promise yours will look great!

Materials Needed:
Pumpkin
Paint Brushes
Acrylic Paints (If you need to buy these, you can get away with getting white, brown, black, red, yellow, and blue and mixing the colors as needed.)
Inspiration photo (preferably Rifle)
Optional: piece of paper

Time Estimated: 1 Hour

1.    Select the image you like best. I chose one with an orange background, so I knew the color palette would go well with the pumpkin. Pour the appropriate paint colors into a paint tray. 

2.    I decided to paint the image on paper first to see if I could hack it. (Pun intended.:) ) I focused on imitating the basic shape of each flower or leaf. I tried to apply depth by mixing in white, brown, or black to the larger flowers. You don’t need to do start on paper, but it only took 15 min. and it helped me notice some of my errors before I put them on the pumpkin. I realized should be painting the foliage before the flowers, the spacing was a little off, etc...

3.    Paint the branch structure onto the pumpkin.

4.    Add the leaves.

5. Add the filler flowers (the smaller bunches).

6. Paint the larger flowers. You will notice that my spacing was wrong for these, so I added in a third flower. It’s not ideal as it made the pumpkin lose a little of the whimsical look I was going for, but it was better than leaving the space open. 

7. Use a few real leaves from outside to complete the centerpiece. I added Laura’s beautiful Psalm 127 printable, and a few hedge apples I got for $0.50. 

I’m certainly not Anna Rifle, but I was pleased I could make a uniquely festive display for $3.50 in an hour. Added bonus: I didn’t have to get any pumpkin grime on me, and this will last longer than a carved image!
And just in case you were wondering, I let my boys paint a few pumpkins too. As much fun as it was to do an adult craft for once, I couldn’t deny them the fun of joining me!

Posted on October 7, 2015 and filed under Building Your Home.