I first saw the idea for little round Halloween paper-strip ornament balls at Convention 2007, and since I don't do Halloween, came right home and made them into paper pumpkins. It is super easy and makes a great fall decoration or children's project. Double-sided paper with orangey tones in it makes the best ones--such as the versatile Haiku papers, Hawaii Papaya, or the lovely new Autumn Vine pattern that you will be seeing shortly in the Holiday Mini Catalog--check your mailboxes! And of course the Patterns DSP in Pumpkin Pie or Tangerine Tango would be the best bet since ALL of the papers are orange in those collections.
To form the largest pumpkin, cut a sheet of DSP into 8x1-inch strips. You can make any size pumpkin by varying the length of the strips, but learn from my experience--if the strips are too long, the pumpkin will sag like a real pumpkin past it's prime (you know, when you really should have thrown the porch decoration pumpkins out last week but you didn't and now there's a pumpkin-guts stain next to your front door?). And likewise, if the strips are too short (trying to make munchkin pumpkins???) then you will need to make the WIDTH of the strips smaller, say half an inch. Trust me.
Hold all the strips together in a stack and punch a hole near both ends through all the layers at once with your Crop A Dile (you can make this project with a regular handheld hole punch, but it will take a lot longer and you will have to line up each individual punch. MUCH more fun with the CAD!)
Still holding the strips together, thread Chocolate Chip wide grosgrain ribbon through one hole and tie a knot. Then, bring the other end of the stacked strips (also punched, remember?), thread it through and pull until the paper strips are bent in a half-circle. Then tie a knot in to keep it taut.
Fan out the paper strips into the body of the pumpkin (oooh, it's like magic!) and trim the grosgrain at an angle to both prevent unravelling and look like a pumpkin handle on the top. Make paper leaves out of Wide Oval punches folded in half and run through the crimper. The paper "vine" curls are made by spritzing a slender strip of Garden Green CS with plain water, then winding it around a pencil. Hold it firmly for a few seconds. The water helps break down the bonds of the paper (that's all the chemistry you'll ever hear from ME) and it will retain it's curlique shape after you let it slide off the pencil.
Attach everything with Sticky Strip, because people are going to HANDLE these little cuties and you don't want them to fall apart. Now wish me luck, because Dan's first grade class is going to make these at his fall party, of which I am in charge!
There you go--now you have an excuse to buy a Crop A Dile! And I'm closing with a photo of my smallest pumpkin and an example of why your strips need to get thinner the shorter they are. Still, cute!
Such a cute idea! I would have never even thought about doing this, but it is really cute Fall Decor for a table. Thanks for the tutorial.
Posted by: Latisha | 09/04/2008 at 11:11 AM
I just love these pumpkins. I miss the Apple Cider paper, but I'm looking foward to the new dsp. Great job on the pumpkins!
Posted by: Jenn D | 09/04/2008 at 03:49 PM
These are so cute! I made some last year thanks for reminding me about them
Posted by: hope | 09/04/2008 at 03:55 PM
Really cute! Good luck with the first graders.....
Posted by: Lisa (crazycatstamper) | 09/04/2008 at 06:01 PM
Oh, I remember you making these from last year! I loved them. I vow to make them this year for sure. Thanks for your "how to" & "not to" on here.
Posted by: Julia | 09/04/2008 at 07:04 PM
These are SO cute! I'm glad you jumped on the blog bandwagon. LOL! I hope I won't offend you by suggesting to put your pictures bigger so they can be viewed without having to click on them to see a close-up. just a suggestion. TFS!
Posted by: Brandi Wiggins | 09/04/2008 at 08:42 PM
Cool pumpkins! I've never seen these before and they look like they would be fun to make.
Posted by: Amanda | 09/09/2008 at 08:02 AM