How to Make Velvet Pumpkins

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Good Morning, Quilters, Crafters and Autumn-Lovers!

Several weeks ago, at a family party, we made more than 30 velvet pumpkins.  By putting our heads together, we tried several methods to refine our process.  I think you are going to love these gorgeous table decorations.  They pair well with quilts, make great gifts and are fun to make as a group project.




Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Velvet-Look for velvet with good drape and rich color.  (Or for a different look, try wool?)

We used Silk-Rayon Velvet from Treadle Yard Goods in St. Paul, MN.  (Between $25-35/yard)  It is available online from several sources, if YOU have a source you recommend, please leave a link in today’s comments.

You will need a minimum of 1/4 yard–for small pumpkins, up to 2/3 yard for larger pumpkins.  Each piece of fabric will yield multiple pumpkins in a variety of sizes.

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Pumpkin Stems-Last year, after the first frost, we obtained two large bags of pumpkin stems from a local farmer’s field.  Once the pumpkins freeze, the stems are easy to remove.  Check out a local farmer or garden center and ask for their leftover pumpkins.  Also, save pumpkin tops, squash stems or use vines or twigs from your trees.  Be creative!

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

More Supplies

  • Rice-buy in bulk–it takes a lot!
  • Strong thread
  • Large hand-sewing needles
  • Scissors
  • Glue gun/glue
  • Marking pen
  • Variety of round plates, bowls, pizza pans

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy


Trace and cut out circles from the velvet.  Nine inch diameter minimum….

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Choose a strong thread…Hand quilting thread, buttonhole twist, or Sulky 12 wt cotton…

Double or triple the thread….If it breaks when you pull it to gather–you have to start over!

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Stitch a long running stitch 1/4 inch from the raw edge.  (Leave a long tail on the knot to pull later.)

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Pull both ends of the running stitch thread to gather the circle of fabric into a pouch.

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori KennedyFill with rice.  We found that filling the pumpkin quite full looked the best.Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Pull the ends of the running stitch as tight as possible and hand tie in a double knot.
Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Stitch the pumpkin closed.

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Choose a pumpkin stem.

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Add hot glue to the pumpkin stem.

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Invert the pumpkin onto the stem (this prevents the hot glue from dripping onto the velvet.)

That’s it!

You have a gorgeous pumpkin!!!

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Once you get started, you will want a rainbow of pumpkins!

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

Then pair them with your favorite fall quilt!

Velvet pumpkins tutorial, Lori Kennedy

NOTE-We tried inserting the stem into the pumpkin pouch before gathering and glueing…but we found this method easier and we liked how they looked better too!

The hardest part of these adorable pumpkins is finding the velvet and the stems…once you find a source for these-you can make these quickly and easily.

Have fun and send photos!

Happy Autumn!


PS…All tutorials, images and information are the property of Lori Kennedy at The Inbox Jaunt and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin or share with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at  Thanks!

23 thoughts on “How to Make Velvet Pumpkins

  1. They are so pretty! I’ve been collecting stems. As soon as I find some velvet–let the fun begin! Thanks once again, Lori!

      • What if you put a pocket of gravel, sand, beans, etc in the bottom & polyfil the rest? I recently made some Zombie pincushions & use some scrap fabric to insert bird seed in the center for weight, & filled the rest tightly with polyfil /batting scraps. (Our bird died some months ago & I still had about 5# of seed left.)

  2. Yeah! Been waiting for this post since you mentioned it! Thank you Lori. Now I’m on the hunt for the velvet fabric! These will make a wonderful addition to my pumpkin collection – crocheted pumpkin patch in a basket with a scarecrow and the table top wheel of multiple size fabric pumpkins. Cheers! V-

  3. Thank you! These are wonderful! I’m on a search for stems. (I may be going door to door in my neighborhood.) You are so generous to share your beautiful ideas.

  4. On a similar project, I’ve used small dry beans as the fill. I found them to be less likely to absorb moisture than rice. I also like the weight these fills provide as compared to poly stuffing.

  5. Very cute! I’d hesitate to use rice, however, especially if it is something we’d want to save and use every year. I had a big bag of rice infested with worms years ago, and it was horrifying! I’d feel much better using something non-edible/non-perishable. Isn’t there some sort of poly bead available to crafters? Like what they use to fill stuffed animals like Beanie Babies.

  6. Ground walnut hulls might work. I use them to stuff pincushions. You can get it at pet stores. They use it in some animals cages. I got mine from Stitch n Post in Sisters,OR but it is a small bag. Also available on Amazon.

  7. I used them a long time ago. I haven’t seen them in awhile. Maybe on line still? I recall they were a little expensive and the bag was about the size a large confectioner’s sugar bag. I do like the idea of beans and lavendar. Maybe in a plastic bag first? anyone ever see bugs, worms or ants in their dried beans before? I live in SE FL and am hesitant to use rice. I get vermin even in pasta and have to microwave for 1 min and then transfer to glass jar. I could try that with rice and do an experiment. Hmm, it’ll have to wait until summer humidity returns to know for sure. Thanks all for input!!

  8. My mom liked to use tiny gravel sold for aquariums for weighting crafts. It was also available in floral crafting sections of stores. Glass beads can be ordered online but I wouldn’t suggest them.. as they are sensitive to wafts of air in the room. We were sorry we ordered them for some craft a few years ago. We got concerned we might breathe them in ! That was ignorance….ordering from just seeing them in catalog and liking the weight. As long as we are experimenting, I think I will try using some of my inherited lame’ – have gold, emerald and fuschia. Have some velveteen in emerald but it may be too thick for pretty gathering up. These velvet pumpkins sort of remind me of making stuffed yoyos. We are making yoyo Christmas trees this year…a range of 4″ to 20 inches.. still trying to choose something for the base ( the trunk?) for the big ones or maybe the lower branch will set down without a trunk.. LOL

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