Don’t want the carving mess? Here are 5 other ways to decorate your pumpkins


Kyran Crist

There are many ways to decorate your pumpkins for the season, such as painting them with whatever design your heart desires.

We are officially over halfway past October and Halloween is creeping around the corner. The breeze is getting colder on campus and nighttime arrives sooner. A majority of pumpkin patches have their best pumpkins picked by now. Let’s not forget that college students do not always have the time and money to dedicate to buying and carving pumpkins between their classes, homework and other commitments.

Not only can any of these ideas prevent a mess (cleaning the slimy bit of pumpkin off the dorm floor totally kills the vibe), but also gives the opportunity to create a unique pumpkin.

1. Gluing ribbons or lace

If paint is too messy or not fancy enough, ribbons at craft stores range from really cheap prices. Michael’s has three yards of Halloween and Autumn themed ribbons for $2.99 before their seasonal sales are applied.

Ribbons can be featured by running up and down along the ridges of the pumpkin or tied in a bow around the stem.

Using liquid glue to secure the ribbons onto pumpkins is the best option.All-over lace on a sphere will not be an easy task. Using a foam brush to apply mod podge to the outside of the pumpkin will be a seriously sticky task but can leave you with perfect Autumn room decor.

2. Flowers

Take a stroll down the flower section at Hobby Lobby and get lost. From realistic baby’s breath, to black roses, to twigs and foliage for your flowery pumpkin dreams can be found.The store typically has sales in the flower section and will allow for a cheaper experience while also giving the perfect opportunity to go out with the roommates or a few friends and have fun off of campus.

Trim the stem down and poke it through the surface of the pumpkin. Cutting the flowers and petals off of the stem and gluing them down to the pumpkin is also an easy way to add 3D elements to the pumpkin.

From flower crows, to a fully-covered pumpkin of white daisies, anything is possible when you have a craft store available within 20 minutes of campus, a creative mind, and Pinterest.

3. Push pins

When money is tight, push pins save the day. The super cute, shiny gold push pins reserved for notes and photos on the bulletin board in the dorm room – can easily become a cute accessory for any pumpkin.

Simply push the pin through the surface of any pumpkin type and create a totally chic new design for pumpkins with barely any effort.

4. Painting your pumpkins

Pumpkin painting has slowly become a fun trend the past few years through the younger crowd decorating and sharing on social media platforms such as Pinterest, Instagram, and VSCO.

Plastic craft pumpkins are on display at Michael’s craft store to buy between $4.99-$9.99 before tax depending on chosen size. Michael’s also has multiple tools such as Sharpie paint markers to draw metallic designs or trace letters on the pumpkin to make them pop.

However, brushes are cheaper to buy from 5 Below. They offer giant packs of paints for only five dollars before taxes. They also have a wide variety of brushes that come in large packs for low prices. From large brushes, to small detail brushes, to foam brushes, you can find what you need.

Michael’s offers larger bottles of paint and other colors. From pastels, to neutrals, to vibrant and neon, there is every color imaginable in the paint aisle. For specific colors, it is easier to buy a specific bottle rather than trusting that creating a lilac purple is as easy as artists make it look by using only primary colors and mixing. It will waste time and paint. Buying a pack of fun and bright colors will only cost about ten dollars (give or take) and will be perfect for multiple people to use and share.

As far as canvases go, painting a real pumpkin is easier than painting on plastic ones. The small pumpkin pie pumpkins at Target are about three dollars and are adorable. The texture of the pumpkin allows an easier canvas to paint. The paint covers the surface and does not chip away as easily as it does on the smooth plastic. The paint separates with each stroke on the plastic and will show visible brush strokes on the pumpkin even after the paint dries.

Nail polish is another item that can be used to splatter color across your pumpkin canvas if money is tight or if there is an old bottle laying around somewhere.

5. Glitter

Glitter can be used for an entire pumpkin or just in addition to any of the above. A sparkly magenta pumpkin is the perfect way to draw attention to the dorm room. Glitter can be used in different ways such as buying glitter glue to drip down the pumpkin or to make a shimmery concoction by mixing it into the paint.

Although a real pumpkin can be easier to test out a lot of the crafts, the fake plastic pumpkins also allow your masterpiece to be taken out of storage for future Halloweens to put out for display.

Trying these ideas for pumpkins this year will give you the “coolest roomie” vibes when other students walk past your dorm. A glittery pumpkin will be the perfect prop to hold in your spooky season Instagram posts as well.