Skip the Jack-O-Lantern, these terra-cotta pumpkins will last longer

Oct 13, 2014 at 4:20 p.m. ET

Looking for sophisticated fall decor to adorn your porch? Look no further than this amazing terra-cotta mosaic pumpkin that brings the earthy orange color to a fake pumpkin.

Fall is my favorite season, hands down, and I really like the look and feel of autumn. And in light of that, it may come as a surprise to you that it’s at this time of year I tend to decorate the least. I decided, however, to change things, and this year my front porch will be bedecked in mums, hay bales and pumpkins. Fall decorating, here we come!

Pumpkin

And after watching the decor I did put out last year rot, I decided that in 2014 I was going to be all about making permanent pumpkins I can toss into storage and reuse in the next year. After all, it seems such a waste to put pumpkins on my porch for a few months and watch them decay when I could be doing something much more productive with them. Like pumpkin seeds!

Making one of these pumpkins is lots of fun, even if it is lots of work. The results of this gorgeous terra-cotta mosaic pumpkin is well worth the effort and will grace the porch of your home for years.

Pumpkin supplies

Materials you will need:

  • Fake pumpkin
  • Terra-cotta pots
  • Hot glue gun
  • Plaster of paris
You can typically find pots for around a dollar apiece at big box stores. Also, dig around in your unused pots you may have in the garage or storage and keep an eye out for cheap finds at thrift stores and garage sales.
Pumpkin 4
Take a hammer and smash your pot into medium to large sizes. If you strike your pot on something soft (like inside a cardboard box), you’ll get larger pieces. If you strike on something firm, like a tabletop, you’ll get smaller and more jagged pieces.
pumpkin 5
Using a hot glue gun, apply your pieces to the pumpkin. Take care as terra-cotta can take on heat pretty quickly.
Pumpkin 6
Depending on where from the pot your piece came, it could be flat or curved. Be sure to place your pieces to where they lie nice and flush.
Pumpkin 7
Pieces that do not lie flat can be difficult to attach and pose problems when attempting to grout your pumpkin. You can use a hammer to make these pieces smaller to fit better or find a different place for it on your pumpkin.
pumpkin
Cover the entire pumpkin with pieces.
Pumpkin 6

You can find plaster of paris at big box stores, craft stores or hardware stores. Mix up a very, very small amount at a time. You’ll want it to be like a thick soup. Allow to set for a minute or two and thicken up.

If you’re an impatient crafter, you can have two bowls going at once so you can keep up the pace.

Pumpkin

Pour the thickening plaster in between the pieces of terra-cotta.

Pumpkin 9

Use your fingers to press the plaster into the cracks. It may start off looking kind of neat but it will get messier the further you go along. That’s to be expected, so no worries if you’re not getting things perfectly done.

Pumpkin 10

Work on a section, turn the pumpkin and work on the opposite side. This will help to distribute the weight while you work.

Pumpkin 10

As you fill in a section, use a wet sponge to wipe the excess off the terra-cotta pieces. You can work in large areas, just be sure to wipe the extra away before it starts to really set up or you’ll have some scrubbing on your hands.

Pumpkin

Allow the pumpkin to dry as the terra-cotta will take on water and that will change the color of the pieces to be much darker.

Set outside with the rest of your fall decor and cherish it for years to come!

More Halloween inspiration

More great fall decor crafts

Fall decor with pressed leaves
DIY fluffy burlap wreath
Harvest basket craft

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