This DIY Beaded Pumpkin has saved me more than once when I needed a quick, fun craft. It’s cute, simple and can be done by large groups, making it a perfect Halloween party craft.
I signed up (again) to be the Room Parent for Middle’s classroom (because I can’t say no.) At her school, Room Parent means organizing the 3 classroom parties: Halloween, Winter, and Valentine’s Day.
A great classroom party included some games, a craft or two, and snacks (well, let’s call it a mediocre party because, let’s be honest, I’m a little bit lazy. Plus there are lots of rules to follow and only 50 minutes. Although, if you haven’t planned well, a 50-minute classroom party can feel like eternity. Ask me how I know.)
This particular year, I was working with other room parents to create a plan and I was in charge of crafts. I found this cute little Beaded Pumpkin and modified it to be manageable for most elementary school kids (and most adults.)
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Beaded Pumpkin Supplies Supplies
Create Your Base
First, hold your 4 brown pipe cleaners in one hand at about the middle.
Using your other hand, twist the bundle right at the middle. This will hold the bundle together.
Tip: If you are using this for a group craft or a kid’s craft, it can be helpful if you do this ahead of time. It’s more work for you but will make the craft go faster and easier for the group.
Lay your brown pipe cleaners on a flat surface and spread out the ends. It should look like a star or asterisk.
Thread Pony Beads
Next you will thread the pony beads onto each arm.
You should put about 10 beads onto each arm. You want to thread them all the way to the base of your arm. The fuzziness of the pipe cleaner will help to hold them in place.
If you are doing this for a group craft, you will want to count out the beads ahead of time. The fastest way to do this is to count out 80 beads one time. Then use either a scale (a kitchen or mailing scale will usually weigh light items like this) or use a small cup or container. Mark the weight or where the beads fill the container and then you can simply reweigh or refill the container to make your kits.
Create the Stem
This next part is the trickiest part, because you only have 2 hands. Gently bend the arms up to meet where your pony beads end.
It is easiest to work with in pairs with arms across from each other.
Once you’re holding all the arms in one hand, give it a twist so that you can secure the stem. Don’t work yet about making the sides of your pumpkin pretty, we will do that later.
When working with kids, depending on their age and skill level, they might need help with this part.
Create the Vine
Finally, twist the green pipe cleaner once around the stem to hold it in place.
Using a pencil or pen, wrap the green pipe cleaner to create a tight, uniform spiral.
Slide the pencil out.
Twist the other side around a pencil and slide the pencil out.
Fold or Twist the Stem
Depending on what you plan to do with the finished pumpkin, you will either twist or bend the remaining pipe cleaner to form a stem.
To twist the stem, fold it in half so the sharp ends are tucked in and twist the whole bundle.
To bend it for a place card or paper holder, separate the stem into two groups of 4.
Bend each group in half to keep the sharp ends in. Gently bend the stems to create a sort-of stand to rest a piece of paper or cardstock, or bend them in half to create a sort of clip-like holder for pictures or cardstock.
All the twisting for the stem and vine might have crushed our pumpkin a bit. Gently bend the sides of your pumpkin into the shape you want. You can space the sides out evenly and give them all a slight curve.
If you make a beaded pumpkin, please share a photo of it with me by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Happy (lazy) crafting!