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DIY Concrete Pumpkins

Decor, DIY, How-Tos

“Dreams come true when desire transforms into concrete actions.” -Napolean Hill

Three concrete pumpkins displayed on a riser on a kitchen island with a copper pitcher filled with Fall florals.

I’ve decided that 2020 is the year of concrete crafts at the farm, so what better way to celebrate the arrival of Fall than with DIY concrete pumpkins. I can’t get enough of them, y’all! This Fall I’m obsessed with making concrete pumpkins, much like I was obsessed this past Summer when I discovered how to make concrete bowls.  If you’ve never tried to make concrete bowls, you’ll want to check out my post for them here. Fair warning: once you start, it’s hard to stop!

Concrete although messy is so easy to work with, very fun, and inexpensive. It’s a wonderful media for making home decor and it’s fun for the whole family. Dare I say… These concrete pumpkins may even be more fun than the bowls!? 

Can you ever have too many pumpkins?

The answer to this question is no. Along with leaves changing colors and cool crisp air, pumpkins are another telltale sign that Fall has arrived. At the farmhouse, I love to decorate for Fall with pumpkins. Whether they are real pumpkins or faux pumpkins, I say the more the merrier to celebrate the season. This year though, I felt like something was missing. 

I wanted to add more texture to my fall decor and I needed some smaller pumpkins to use in vignettes. Being that I still had concrete leftover from the Summer bowls, it didn’t take long before I decided I would try my hand at making some concrete pumpkins. 

Fresh, faux, or concrete- all pumpkins are beautiful.

Concrete pumpkins are easy, inexpensive, and so fun to make! You can really let your creativity run wild. Quick-dry concrete, quality pantyhose (or trouser stockings), and some twine are basically all you need to make adorable concrete pumpkins for your home. 

Close up of concrete pumpkins with brick background

A word to the wise.

The beauty of my tutorial is that I am providing you with the exact materials that I found which worked best for making the perfect concrete pumpkins. Through trial and error here at the farm, I’ve taken the guesswork out of it for you. Quality nylons are key. I found that “Active” pantyhose and trouser socks made the best pumpkins. My favorite was the trouser socks, though they are slightly more expensive. In the end, I think the ease of using quality nylons out-weighed the cost. (Note: The cheaper the nylon, the harder it is to peel off your pumpkin. Believe me, they make a fuzzy mess… I learned the hard way!)

A photo collage of two photos. One photo is pantyhose and trouser socks. The other photo is trouser socks with a knot tied at the bottom of them.

One of the things I decided early on was that I was going to sift out the small rocks from the concrete. After making concrete bowls, I realized that there is a tremendous amount of rocks in concrete. I loved the texture the rocks added to the bowls however, I didn’t think they would be a good look for the pumpkins. Knowing that the concrete pumpkins were not going to be large and I was hoping for a smooth look, I decided that for this project I wanted the concrete to be as rock-free as possible. Using an old net I found in the garage, I sifted out the rocks. You can also try using an old window screen or a wire mesh colander. 

A close up photo of the rocks in the sifter that were sifted out of the concrete.

The container you use to hold the nylons open is also important. It needs to be wide enough that you can get a good amount of concrete in the nylon. At the same time, the mouth of the container cannot be too wide, otherwise, your nylon will not fit around it. It took some trial and error to find the perfect container around the farmhouse to use. I ended up using an old crock to hold my nylons. It worked beautifully! You can also use an old ice cream container or small sand pail. 

Photo collage of two photos. The first photo of a nylon on the crock. The second photo os of the concrete in the nylon in the crock.

Be sure when you are tying up your concrete-filled nylons with twine to make the creases for the pumpkins that you don’t tie the strings too tight. If your twine disappears into the nylon and concrete to the point you can’t see it, the concrete will dry and you will have a lot of trouble getting the twine off. It will end up being buried in the concrete.

Also, be careful not to tie the twine too close to the top knot in the nylon or over the top knot. This will also cause you trouble once your pumpkins are dry and you are ready to cut off the nylon and twine.

Photo collage of three photos. The first photo is the twine displayed in a star needed to tie up the nylons to make the shape of a pumpkin. The second photo is the nylon filled with concrete and tied up by twine looking like a pumpkin. The third photo is all the concrete pumpkins drying on cardboard.

Finally, take caution when cutting off the twine and nylon once the pumpkins are dry (after 24-48 hours). I started at the bottom. I cut the twine off first and removed it. Then, I cut the knot in the nylon off and slowly peeled it upward.

Photo collage of three photos showing how to cut twine, and knot from concrete pumpkin and then peel nylon off.

If you notice a texture to the concrete from the nylon that you’re not happy with, sponge off your pumpkins with some water and use 220 grit sandpaper to smooth it out.  

Get creative when making your concrete pumpkins.

The best part of making these pumpkins is experimenting with their sizes and shapes. I was challenged by trying to make a taller pumpkin and some smaller ones. I also loved walking around the farm in search of branches and things to make the best stems and curly vines to decorate my pumpkins. You can add flowers, berries, or leaves to your pumpkins if you like too.

The fun of this DIY is making your concrete pumpkins as ornate or as simple as you choose. Enjoy decorating them. Make them a representation of you and your beautiful home. 

Concrete Pumpkins with a stack of sticks and curly vines to make stems and vines for the pumpkins.

Concrete pumpkins on a riser in front of a brick wall.

Three concrete pumpkins displayed on a riser on a kitchen island with a copper pitcher filled with Fall florals.

DIY Concrete Pumpkins

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Active Time: 1 hour
Additional Time: 1 day
Total Time: 1 day 1 hour 10 minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated Cost: Less than $30

DIY concrete pumpkins are a wonderful way to celebrate the arrival of Fall. They are a fun, easy, and inexpensive DIY that is great for all ages. Use concrete pumpkins inside and outside your home to celebrate and decorate for the season. Be careful though, once you start- you may find it hard to stop. Enjoy!

Materials

  • Cardboard
  • Quick-dry Concrete
  • Water
  • Recycled container or crock
  • Quality (strong) pantyhose or nylons
  • Twine
  • Branches (for stems)

Tools

  • Bucket
  • Concrete mixing attachment for drill
  • Scissors
  • 220 grit sandpaper
  • Hot glue gun 

Instructions

  1. Place cardboard on your work surface. (You'll thank me later!)
  2. If using full pantyhose, cut the legs off the top. Fold the legs in half and cut. You will end up with four equal lengths of nylons.
  3. Tie a knot at one end of each nylon.
  4. Wrap the open end of the nylon around the container or crock.
  5. Place something over the top of the bucket to sift out the small rocks in the concrete.
  6. Pour a small amount of concrete over the sifter. Once you have the rocks separated from the concrete, discard them. Add water to the concrete in small amounts. Mix. The concrete should be the consistency of pudding. Slightly thicker is okay but more watery is not. If it's too watery, add more concrete.
  7. Pour concrete into nylon. The amount you pour in depends on how big you want your pumpkins to be. Have fun experiment with sizes!
  8. Take the nylon off the sides of the container. Lift the nylon up but not out of the container holding it with one hand. Use your free hand to slide down the nylon and push concrete down forming a sphere. (Think milking a cow.)
  9. Tie a knot tightly at the top.
  10. Cut three lengths equal lengths of twine and lay them out on the cardboard in a star formation (*).
  11. Pull your concrete sphere from your container and place it on the cardboard in the center of the twine star.
  12. Bring each string up one at a time tying each to its own end. Tie them as taught as you want to create the grooves of the pumpkin. NOTE: Do not tie the strings so tight that they get buried in the concrete. It will be very difficult to get out once the concrete has dried. Also, do not tie them over the knot at the top of the nylon.
  13. Once you've got your strings tied, you can press and shape your pumpkin how ever you like.
  14. Allow the concrete pumpkins to dry for at least 24-48 hours.
  15. Once your pumpkins are dry, cut the nylon knot off the top or bottom and begin cutting the strings of twine. Carefully, peel the twine and nylons off the concrete.
  16. Use 220 grit sandpaper and water to smooth out the pumpkins.
  17. Hot glue stems on the pumpkins using cut branches.
  18. Have fun decorating your pumpkins any way you like. Add leaves, berries, or curly vines. Get creative!
Pin for Pinterest of close up of concrete pumpkins with brick background.

 

  1. Michelle says:

    Can you tell me where you got that tray? It’s so pretty!

  2. Mercedes says:

    I love how these pumpkins turned out!

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