Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Harvest Pumpkin...

I was on the phone with a friend the other day, and she was telling me about a project she was starting where she was going to decoupage book pages onto a black plastic pumpkin she had lying around to make it less dreary.  I really liked that idea, but I hate destroying books, so I came up with a Harvest Pumpkin...

To make your own, you will need: 
  • A small fake pumpkin ~ I found this beauty at my local dollar store... supposedly you can carve it, so I'm guessing it's made of some sort of styrofoam.
  • Hymn lyrics printed on ivory computer paper ~ I'll give instructions for how to do this very shortly.
  • Scissors, Mod Podge (matte finish), and a 1-inch foam brush
  • One paper bag ~ This is for keeping your table glue-free as well as for covering the stem.

Step 1: Find lyrics and prep your paper...

Start out by selecting the hymns that are either meaningful to you, or relate to praise or harvest.  I picked:
  • "Praise to the Lord, the Almighty" by Joachim Neander
  • "Sing to the Lord of the Harvest" by John S.B. Monsell
  • "For the Beauty of the Earth" by Folliot S. Pierpoint
  • "Come, Ye Thankful People, Come" by Henry Alford
  • "As the Sun Doth Daily Rise" by an unknown author
  • "All Creatures of Our God and King" by Francis of Assisi
I then found the lyrics to these songs on Net Hymnal, a great resource for finding old hymns and lyrics, as well as authors and dates the lyrics were written.  

I then copied and pasted the lyrics into a word processing program, formatted them to a font and size I liked and oriented the page in landscape to fit the size of my pumpkin.  I printed them and cut the sheets of paper into strips with approximately 1/2 inch border around the top and sides, leaving the bottom full-length.  (I did not end up using the text I put in the fancy text box, but you could...)

Step 2: Crumple and start gluing!

Once you have cut out your strips of lyrics, crumple them up to make the thick computer paper more flexible.  I ended up crumpling each sheet twice.  

Glue the back of the page and then begin to position it on the pumpkin, starting at the top and smoothing it down the side.  I ended up with some extra paper on the sides and bottom that didn't lay nicely, so I tore off the parts that hung over, and was then careful to cover the parts I tore.  

Once you have positioned all the paper, use the sponge to put a layer of the glue over top of all the paper.  Tip the pumpkin on its side, resting it on the stem to allow it to dry.  (Cover your glue and clean your brush while you wait so it doesn't dry out.) I had to wait a little longer than the drying time described on the bottle, because I put the glue on a bit thick in some places.

Be careful with this step, because the ink has a tendency to smudge when it gets wet.  There are a few places where my fingers smeared the ink a bit while I was holding the pumpkin to glue.

Step 3: Cover the Stem

Once the glue dries, cut a square of paper from your paper bag, large enough that it will meet up with the rest of the paper on the pumpkin when you fold it down over the stem.

Crumple the paper a few times to get it soft and pliable.  Trim notches from the edges to make a jagged edge where the stem meets the pumpkin.

Apply glue to the back of the paper, and form the paper around the stem, crinkling it so it follows the contours of the stem.  Once you are satisfied with its positioning, spread a layer of glue over the top of the stem and allow it to dry.  Clean up and put your feet up. 

When it dries, add your cute little harvest pumpkin to your fall centerpiece, your mantle, or somewhere you can look at it and smile. Enjoy!

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