Gorgeous Gourds and Pumpkins for Fall Decorating

Get ready for fall with our fresh ideas for decorating with gourds and pumpkins. Use them to add autumn elegance to your home -- inside and out.


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Halloween Pumpkin Arrangement
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Piled-High Pumpkins

    Set a festive tone with a table piled with pumpkins, gourds, and bittersweet. Raid the cupboard for display ideas such as bowls or cake plates. The rich fall colors of gourds and pumpkins make it easy to create an elegant centerpiece.

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Tablecloth-Weight Gourds

    Little gourds can do great things. Try creating these table weights from mini-gourds to hold the tablecloth in place at an outdoor dinner party. Measure the tabletop and add enough for a 6-inch drop of yardage on all sides plus a 1-inch hem. Hem with fusible tape and an iron. To make the corner flaps, notch a 5-inch square from each corner and hem using fusible tape. Add grommets with a kit from a crafts or fabrics store.

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Pumpkin Place Cards

    Add a thoughtful touch to a fall dinner with custom-made place cards. Using your computer, create business-card-size tags with simple imagery and fanciful lettering. Print and attach to a small gourd with a pushpin. Guests will appreciate the personalized touch.

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Stacked Gourds in Glass Vases

    Gather gourds in cylindrical vases to bring autumn to a tabletop or mantel. Use containers of different sizes to stack gourds in varying amounts. To give each display a vibrant touch, add a length of fresh pumpkin vine from the garden, pulling the vine out at the root and rinsing off the dirt. Place it in the vase with a bit of water.

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Pumpkins on White Dishes

    Stack squatty gourds among your favorite white china. Dishes with ridges complement the natural elements in the display. Mixing and matching is in and is a great way to use your collectibles.

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Crafty Gourd Critters

    Fashion a family of friendly critters to nestle on a fence post or railing. Use small pumpkins and gourds for bodies and attach sunflower seeds, feathers, and nuts with hot glue to make facial features.

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Pumpkin Garland

    A festive fall feel is easy to create in any room by dressing windows with a pumpkin-laden garland. Simply knot clusters of fresh leaves and mini pumpkins onto a length of twine and swag along the top of a window.

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Gourd Candleholders

    Craft a set of candleholders from gourds by simply cutting off the tops and hollowing out the centers. For an easy autumn display, arrange them in a metal tray filled with green hedge apples.

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Prettiest Pumpkin Vases

    White pumpkins double as vases and make for an artful, natural fall display. Tuck leaves, orange flowers, and cattails into a vase hidden inside the hollowed-out pumpkins.

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Wheelbarrow Pumpkin Welcoming Display

    Put an old wheelbarrow to use by filling it with an assortment of pumpkins, gourds, and squash. Use black acrylic paint or a permanent marker to decorate one of the pumpkins with a welcoming message.

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Gourd Sculpture

    Turn white gourds into miniature sculptures by displaying them on small pedestals cut from old table legs and balusters (available at salvage yards).

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Potted Pumpkins

    Weathered terra-cotta pots give this simple display a boost. Set pumpkins in or atop them, and pair them with an explosion of rich burgundy dahlias accented with pumpkin leaves.

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Floating Pumpkins

    Fill an assortment of glasses with water and float mini pumpkin gourds inside. A Teddy Bear sunflower set in a shallow dipping bowl makes a frilly dinner accent.

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Pumpkins on Candlesticks

    White pumpkins look striking when perched on dark wood candlesticks. Arrange your display on a dining room table or fireplace mantel.

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Hanging Gourd Vase

    Hook a swan gourd over a balcony rail to create a hanging vase. Cut a 1- to 2-inch hole near the neck of the gourd, remove a bit of the pith, and insert mums, black-eyed Susans, and a length of Virginia creeper.

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Flowered Pumpkins

    Create this beautiful floral display using yellow and orange mums. Cut the heads from the flowers and hot-glue them all over the pumpkins. Display on tabletops or in small footed urns.

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Pumpkin Luminaries

    Illuminate a fall night with candleholders fit for the season. Carve a small hole in the top of a miniature pumpkin -- wide enough to hold a votive candle and deep enough so the candle can be nestled in securely. For a rustic look, display the pumpkin inside a wire jar holder as shown here.

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Gourd Planters

    Transform gourds into planters for the fall season. Simply hollow out the gourds and tuck in the root balls of ornamental grasses or sedge (a perennial herb). Draw jack-o'-lantern faces onto the gourds with paint pens for a Halloween-theme arrangement.

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Gourds Galore

    Bring a warm glow to the front porch with a generous tumble of smooth-skin gourds in soft, creamy colors. Accent them with frilly ornamental kale and fall flowers.

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Gourd Vase

    Hollow out several tall squashes and use them as vases for your favorite fall blossoms. White gourds make a beautiful pairing with pink and orange flowers.

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Mini-Pumpkin Wreath

    For this autumn wreath, first tap small nails into the surface of miniature gourds and pumpkins to break the surface. Carefully poke sturdy toothpicks into the holes. Coat the protruding end of the toothpick with hot glue and immediately stick into a straw wreath form. Once the wreath is as completely covered with pumpkins and gourds as possible, hot-glue silk leaves around the wreath to fill in the gaps.

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Gourds Under Glass

    Display petite gourds-turned-treasures in a decorative apothecary jar. Garnet-hue leaves and a dried hydrangea benefit from the same prescription.

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Wrapped-Pumpkin Display

    Expand your pumpkin decor with unique yellow, white, and gray pumpkins in lieu of the traditional orange. Wrap them with grapevine tendrils for an additional touch of originality. Arrange them on a tabletop with other fall favorites, such as leaves and dried wheat bundles.

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Squash Blossoms

    Create a vase with a gourd that stands upright. Slice off the stem and use a long slender knife to widen the opening if necessary. Add a handful of bright mums.

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Gourds in a Row

    Create a stunning contemporary centerpiece by arranging four gourds and six large chrysanthemum blossoms symmetrically in a flat bowl or tray.

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Etched Pumpkin

    Dress up a simple pumpkin with a carved design, such as birds or leaves. Simply trace your design on the pumpkin and gouge out the pumpkin skin within the outline. Nestle the pumpkin inside a lush wreath of fall blooms.

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Golden Gourds

    Spray-paint a mix of small gourds shimmery gold, and stack them on a glass cake plate to create an elegant display.

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Carved Gourd

    Take a gourd to the next level with a skin-deep cut in the shape of a leaf. Simply trace a sugar maple leaf (or other found-on-the-ground variety) with a permanent pen. Cut lightly around the outline with a knife, being sure not to cut all the way through the gourd. A simple scraping tool (such as an inexpensive clayworkers' ribbon tool) will help you trim out the shape.

    Editor's Tip: When buying a gourd, pick one in a shape and color that you like. More often than not, the color of the flesh will be different enough from the color of the skin to create a nice contrast.

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