There’s a little nip the air, and that means pumpkins and wearing sweaters. But as most of you already know, wearing sweaters is not what gets me excited; it’s MAKING THINGS WITH SWEATERS that makes me smile.
In this sewing tutorial I am going to show you how to make these fun, whimsy upcycled DIY sweater pumpkins. These pumpkins can be made with felted wool sweaters, cotton sweaters, orange knit, and even fleece. They have so much character; each one turns out a little different and is sure to bring a smile to anyone who sees them.
I am not a big fan of Halloween decor, but I do like to decorate with pumpkins and leaves. So you can put these out for Halloween and leave them sitting around for Thanksgiving.
Don’t limit your color options to just ORANGE sweaters or fabric, look how cute they are made up using a yellow and even a brown sweater. A little whimsy, fun and something you don’t see every day.
You can make these DIY sweater pumpkins with upcycled sweaters, t-shirt fabric, and even fleece. They are quite easy to make and you can even sew these by hand if you don’t have a sewing machine. (Learn some easy and basic hand sewing skills here).
The pumpkin leaves are made with two different shades of green felt and this layering technique that I’ll show you, really adds a unique look.
The pattern comes with two different sizes of pumpkins and can be downloaded and printed out so you can save and use it as much as you want.
DIY Sweater Pumpkins Materials & Items Needed
- Sewing machine or you can sew by hand with a needle and thread.
- Felted Wool sweaters or mixed fiber sweaters work as well, knit or fleece
- Fiberfill Stuffing
- Two shades of green felt
- 2-3 inch length of thin tree branch
- Hot glue gun/glue
- Green 18- 20 gauge cloth stem wire or green craft pipe cleaners
- Dual Duty Heavy Thread or /Upholstery thread
- Pattern and leaf template
If using upcycled wool sweaters read and watch this video for some great tips.
DIY Sweater Pumpkins Instructions
1 – Cut out 6 sweater pumpkin panels.
They can be all the same color or mix and match colors and fabrics.
2 -Using the leaf template, cut out one light green leaf and one dark green leaf.
Sewing Sweater Pumpkins Leaf
3 – Stack the leaves on top of each other, with the dark leaf on top.
Using the leaf template as a visual, sew the leaf veins using a straight stitch on the sewing machine.
You don’t need to be too particular. You can draw the lines lightly with a pencil if you feel you need a pattern or just free sew it. Clip threads.
4 -Apply a strip of hot glue or craft glue along the back center vein of the leaf.
Place the stem wire onto the leaf.
Sewing Sweater Pumpkins
5 – With Right Sides Together (RST) place two of the pumpkin panels together and pin in place.
Sew from tip to tip and backstitch.
6 – Sew the third panel to the two you just sewed together with (RST).
Set that set aside while you sew the next three together. You should have two sets of three panels.
7 – With (RST) place the two pieces together. Line up the top and bottom tips and pin them in place.
Starting on one of the side panels, start sewing around the circle. (You will be leaving about a 3 inch opening for stuffing).
Take your time when going over the top and bottom tips where all the pieces come together. Make sure the seams line up. Go slow so you don’t break a needle!
8 – Trim the bottom and top tips.
Stuffing the Sweater Pumpkins
9 – Stuff the pumpkin through the hole you left.
10-Sew opening closed.
Double thread a needle with matching thread and slip stitch the opening closed.
*I have a little tutorial on how to do the slip stitch. You can locate HERE
11-Making pumpkin contour
Double thread a LONG needle with upholstery thread so it is about 20 inches in length and knot the end.
To plump out and give the top indent: Stick the needle into the top center end poke the needle through the pumpkin to the bottom. You will have to pinch the top and bottom together to find the needle. Just gently keep poking until it pokes through the center bottom.
12- Repeat this back and forth a few times until you get the plumpness you desire.
End at the top and take a little stitch and knot. Don’t worry about the knot showing, as it will be covered up by the stem.
Adding Sweater Pumpkin Stem
13- Cut tree branch.
Get out your tree pruners and go out in your yard and find a thin tree branch that looks suitable for a pumpkin stem and cut about two inches off.
Apply a big dab of hot glue in the top indent of the pumpkin and stick your branch in and secure place.
14- Wrap the wire around the stem several times and then wrap the other end around a pencil to make the curly vine.
Pull the pencil out and you are finished!