Thursday, October 13, 2011

Green Halloween Crafts - Pumpkins from Twine, Books, and Wool

The other day, Liz and I were sharing ideas about how to have a green Halloween party. To take it one step further, what about making some green crafts to use as decorations? Buying a real pumpkin is a waste if you don't compost it when you're done. And even then, it seems pointless to buy food just to let it rot on your doorstep. (Don't get me wrong--I have 2 pumpkins on my very cute doorstep, but I would like to make some more eco-friendly decorations).

I was inspired by some great crafts I found online, and I was going to make them so I could share with you, but they are not as easy to make as they look. So I'm passing along the ideas, but I admit--they are not my own. Here are some pictures and links to tutorials, as well as instructions for how not to do these crafts, and pictures of my failures. Gather your materials over the weekend, though: Next week I'm posting video tutorials to my successful versions!

Twine Pumpkins
Twine balls made on the Nate Berkus show
I love this idea, and I thought it would look great if you made these balls out of orange yarn or spray painted the twine orange after it hardened. After searching multiple websites to find instructions, I settled on this eHow article that advises to use a flour paste, because I felt like that was the greenest option, especially if you are doing this craft with kids.

This is what I ended up with:

The flour paste left residue all over, even in between the strings. It took me 3 tries to boil the flour paste and not let it turn into a hard, gummy ball. It also attracted flies.

I'm going to try again, though. I think this would make a cute pumpkin, and you could even embellish with felt cutouts in the shape of a jack-o-lantern face and insert a battery-operated tea light.

If you want to try this craft, you can use white glue and water, liquid starch, or fabric stiffener (buy this at a craft or fabric store). I'll post pics when I successfully make mine!

Book Page Pumpkin
Beautiful pumpkin made from a book on The Artsy Girl Connection

I thought this book page pumpkin from the Artsy Girl Connection was a beautiful, unexpected fall decoration. I tried to make it, but I tore out the pages from the book instead of keeping them all together. They were still bound in small batches though, so I glued them together with a thin strip of glue on the binding edge. Now I have some great half-moon shaped mini books:

But when I tried to assemble them, I didn't have that fluffed, rounded look. So I did some more research, and found this Book Page Pumpkin Tutorial from Now it makes sense. I'm redoing this one, and I'll post a video tutorial when I'm done. It will make a lot more sense.

Felted Wool Pumpkins
Amy at Anktangle's wool dryer balls
I know, I know. These don't look like pumpkins at all. But you can make these with orange wool and add jack-o-lantern faces. My balls are in the dryer right now. Again--I know, I know. You know what I mean.

This is what I have so far:

Stay tuned for more fall crafts in the next week!

No comments:

Post a Comment