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Tutorial: Clay Mini Pumpkins

 September is here, and it's time for a craft project!

I've linked this one up with Donna's FunkyJunk Interiors

Years ago, when my four children were small, I came across a recipe for homemade clay.
We used it to make little pumpkins for Halloween decor. 
The pumpkins shown here are the last remaining few from that project over 20 years ago.
Yes, they have lasted that long! 

The scene above shows the clay pumpkins gathered around a porcelain figure of a girl -
she's a 'shelf-sitter' that I used in my seasonal decorating over the years.
I made her party hat out of scrapbook papers and crepe paper, 
and included a 'Winnie the Pooh in the Hundred Acre Wood' cookie jar in the party.
The characters on it are wearing costumes, so it was a perfect fit for Halloween. 

Making these little pumpkins from clay was a fun project for the kids... and me ;0) 
While I displayed them in their original orange craft-paint finish for years
the paint began to wear off after two decades, and I decided that it was finally time
to make them match the rest of my pale color scheme.
I repainted them in a creamy ivory color, and displayed them with more elegant surroundings:
Whether you use colored clay or paint the finished pumpkins, 
this clay craft is something the whole family can enjoy -
and it's made using ingredients from your pantry!

The recipe and instructions are below, so you can make your own.
Happy Fall!!!


1 c. cornstarch
1 1/2 c. baking soda
1 c. cold water
Food coloring if you wish to use colored clay

Cookie Sheet

Combine ingredients in saucepan.
Stir gently while cooking on medium heat stovetop until liquid solidifies and clay forms. 
Remove from heat. Turn off burner.
Remove clay from saucepan and place on cutting board to let cool.

Knead clay for a few minutes to create smooth texture. If the clay cracks as you knead it, add a few drops of water and keep kneading.
Form balls of various sizes. [For best drying results, do not make balls larger than 2" diameter.]
Press down on top of ball lightly to form a more pumpkin-like shape.
Use toothpick to score lines like pumpkin grooves. 
Make indentation on top of pumpkin for stem to sit in.

Form small cylinder,  and squish both ends to look like a stem.
Place stem into indentation on top of pumpkin, and use toothpick to press edges together. 
[you can break a toothpick and insert it into the middle of the stem, then into the pumpkin to help anchor it, if you wish]

**my friend David at BasilicusJones Home used real twigs, broken into small lengths, for his stems. Cute idea!**
Add details into pumpkins to make faces, if you wish, using toothpicks, nut picks, dental tools, etc.

Place on cookie sheet and Bake for 1 hour at 250 degrees, or harden at room temperature overnight. 
Paint if you wish, then seal with clear acrylic spray paint.
When not being used, store in a ziploc plastic bag to prevent moisture from  reaching pumpkins.

I hope you enjoy this easy fall craft! Want MORE great pumpkin ideas from Deb?

Check out my Original Glass Lamp Globe Pumpkins
and my Original Sweet Sweater Pumpkin Tutorial

shared online:

Funky Junk Interiors Party Junk | DIY Pumpkin Projects


  1. Cute project! I may give this a try.

  2. Thanks for that recipe and instructions. They are so cute! xo Diana

  3. This is great Deb, I got some mini clay Fall/Halloween ornaments from a shop owner last year and thought they were some kind of clay. They sold out and Ive been trying to figure out how to make them.

    Your awesome...can you please publish a Fall project/decor book. I would love to flip through those pages. I love Fall...my favorite season!

    Lucky 7 Design

  4. Oh love just love these! thanks for posting the recipe, I've heard the cornstarch and BS is better than the flour and salt. Your lil' pumpkins are simply adorable! visiting thru Funky Junk pumpkin party - new follower!