Tag Archives: pumpkin

Halloween Decor: Painted Pumpkins

DSC_0980DSC_0937Only one more day til Halloween, which means only one more day for Halloween crafts! That’s the real tragedy, isn’t it? Well, when it gets this late and you’re looking for a last minute craft to decorate your home for Halloween, there’s nothing better than good ‘ol pumpkins.

While carving your pumpkins may the traditional route, painting them can be equally adorable and a little pop of color to your home. Instead of going with tradition this year, Andrew and I painted our pumpkins bright colors with fun patterns to brighten up the dining room, plus added some glitter to one to really make it pop. This is really easy and will even prolong the life of your pumpkins because they haven’t been carved!  DSC_0966DSC_0971Go ahead and get out of your pumpkin comfort zone! Paint them bright colors that aren’t necessarily “Halloweeny” and add patterns that YOU love. In our case, I painted a lavender pumpkin with gold herringbone lines one pumpkin, and Andrew painted his light blue with gold polkadots (he wasn’t really sure what was up with this whole “painting pumpkins” thing). Paint the stems a matching color for more uniformity and color! To decorate the small pumpkin, I covered it with Mod Podge and rolled it in a mixture of purple and silver glitter with a white painted stem.DSC_0965It may not be conventional, but they’re definitely more like me! Plus, I can keep them around after Halloween for a colorful table piece.

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Orange Buttercream Frosting Pumpkins on Chocolate Cupcakes

DSC_0941It’s almost Halloween, which means it’s time to get down to business and start throwing out themed treats. Designing with candy melts can be tough sometimes, but here’s one super simple way to show off Halloween themed cupcakes without needing superb candy melt decorating skills (because I don’t have those yet either).

What comes to mind when you think of Halloween? Or October? Or fall? Pumpkins, of course. So here’s one simple way to incorporate pumpkins into your autumn treats with orange flavored buttercream frosting, rich chocolate cupcakes, and a little bit of green candy melts. First, gather your ingredients:

For the cake:

  • Boxed mix (I used Duncan Heins Devils Food Cake)
  • Eggs
  • Water
  • Vegetable Oil

For the frosting/pumpkins:

  • 2 sticks of butter, softened
  • 4 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp orange flavoring
  • Orange gel food coloring
  • Green candy melts

Start by mixing your cake according to the box’s instructions and bake inside of cupcake liners.

While they bake, mix your frosting by mixing the softened butter and vanilla until smooth and slowly add the powdered sugar, mixing as you go until it is creamy and still pretty stiff. Add about 2 tsp of orange flavoring (try one at first, taste and decide from there) and about 6 drops of orange gel coloring, and continue to mix until the color is evenly distributed. It’s important to use gel coloring so that it does not change the frosting’s texture.

When your cupcakes are done baking, leave on a cooling rack to cool completely. In the meantime, melt your green candy by microwaving  a couple pieces (you don’t need very much) in a bowl on the defrost setting for about 30 seconds. Stir and continue to heat in 10-15 second intervals until it is completely melted. Then, move the candy into a squeeze bottle or a piping bag with a very small tip.

*Pro tip: You can totally use a regular plastic ziplock bag with the tip cut off to do this if you don’t have a bottle or piping bag.

DSC_0948DSC_0952Carefully pipe the melted candy into multiple curved pumpkin stems on a piece of waxed paper until they are about 1/4 inch wide and 1 inch tall. If you have the hang out it, try making the stems thicker on the bottom like a real pumpkin stem might be. Let them cool and harden.

Once your cupcakes are cool, pipe or  spread the orange frosting onto the tops with a large circular tip or a spatula.

Carefully peel the pumpkin stems off of the waxed paper, and stick them into the tops of each of your cupcakes for a delicious, orange and chocolate flavored pumpkin! Stay tuned for a couple more Halloween inspired DIYs and treats. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Succulent Planter

DSC_0563To celebrate the beginning of fall and to autumn-ify my apartment, I picked up a miniature pumpkin, along with several small succulents to fill it with for a fall centerpiece. While I don’t enjoy pumpkin foods, I still really enjoy the smell and aesthetic of them this time of year.

To make this centerpiece planter, you’ll need a miniature pumpkin, approximately 5 inches, and a knife, spoon and three of the smallest succulents you can find. If you prefer, you could even paint your pumpkin or coat it with glitter for a different feel.DSC_0554 DSC_0550Cut a hole in the small pumpkin, about 3-3 1/2 inches wide, and hollow it out with a spoon, scraping everything out that you can. Use your knife to clean up the sides of the hole as best you can. Then carefully place your succulents inside. You will probably need to loosen the soil around the roots and let it fall to the bottom of the pumpkin in order to fit all three of the plants insides and still have soil on the bottom.

Depending on your pumpkin, you might find that you need more soil, but I didn’t need any more than what came in my small succulent pots. Clean up the sides with a paper towel once the plants are inside and your planter is complete. DSC_0565Put it on a table, shelf or mantle for beautiful autumn decor that will brighten the room. Just remember, a carved pumpkin won’t last forever, so when it begins to spoil, you’ll want to move out your succulents and discard the pumpkin.

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