Rustic Pumpkins

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day


Turn your front porch into the envy of the neighborhood with this trio of quick-and-simple rustic pumpkins.


  • Dow STYROFOAM Brand Foam Sheets: 1″x12″x18″, 1⁄2″x12″x12″
  • Modern Options Paints: Metallic Surfacer, Iron; Antiquing Solution, Rust
  • Brown acrylic paint (optional)


  • Paintbrush, 1″
  • Utility knife or serrated kitchen knife
  • Teaspoon

Basic Supplies

scissors, pencil, soap, newspaper (to cover work surface)



9-1⁄2″, 14-1⁄4″, 17-1⁄2″ tall


1. Print and cut out pattern. Transfer design. Use knife to cut materials from plastic-foam as indicated. (Note: Rub blade with bar soap to help blade glide through foam easily.) Make 1⁄4″-deep, “V”-shaped cuts along section lines. Use edge of spoon to smooth cut edges and tip of spoon to press central vein line on each leaf.

2. Adhere leaves to pumpkins.

3. Follow manufacturer’s instructions to paint pumpkins and leaves two coats Iron. Paint backs Iron or Brown. Follow manufacturer’s instructions and use disposable brush to paint pumpkins and leaves Rust.

by Kathleen George for The Dow Chemical Co.

Fall Gold Card

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day


This autumn mixed media card is highlighted with Premo! Sculpey maple leaves you create yourself. Create just the embellishment you want in any color imaginable!


  • Polyform Premo! Sculpey Clay: Purple, 18K Gold
  • Paper: Pink Paislee Butterfly Garden Collection Paper Pad, DCWV Ciao Bella Stack
  • Jillibean Soup Corrugated Shapes
  • Prima Softees Collection Bonnet Flowers
  • Horizon Group Industrial Chic Charms by Susan Lenart Kazmer #MKP24088-123


  • Polyform Tools: Sculpey Clay Conditioning Machine or Acrylic Roller, Sculpey Clay Tool Starter Set, Premo! Mini Metal Cutters Nature
  • Oven and parchment-lined baking sheet
  • Inkadinkado Autumn Foliage Clear Stamps
  • Tsukineko Ink Pads: Brilliance Dew Drops Pearlescent Crimson, Pearlescent Rust; VersaMagic Hint of Pesto
  • Jacquard Products PearlEx Gold Powder Pigment
  • Adhesives: paper adhesive, liquid glue

Basic Supplies

paper trimmer, scissors, ruler, pencil, waxed paper, sponge dauber





1. Wash hands. Cover work surface with waxed paper; do not use unbaked clay on unprotected furniture or finished surfaces. Preheat oven to 275°F; test temperature with oven thermometer for perfectly cured clay. Do not use microwave oven.

2. Knead each package of clay until soft and smooth, washing hands between colors, or follow manufacturer’s instructions to use Clay Conditioning Machine. Run clay through machine several times on widest setting; fold clay in half after each pass and insert folded edge into rollers first.

3. When clay is pliable, mix small amounts Purple and 18K Gold clay. Run clay through Clay Conditioning Machine on #1 setting to create sheet. Cut six maple leaves from clay; use needle tool from Starter Set to make vein lines. See Photo 1.

Photo 1

4. Place leaves on parchment-lined baking sheet. Use finger to edge leaves with gold pigment powder.

5. Bake clay shapes as directed; let cool completely.

6. Choose three Butterfly Garden paper sheets. From first sheet, make 5”x7” side-fold card; sponge edges Hint of Pesto.

7. Using Pearlescent Rust ink, stamp sentiment onto second sheet of paper. Tear stamped area from sheet; sponge edges Pearlescent Rust.

8. Determine sentiment placement but do not adhere paper. Press Pearlescent Crimson ink pad onto card once so ink will be partially visible behind sentiment. Adhere sentiment to card.

9. Tear thin strip from third sheet of paper. Tear wider strip from Ciao Bella purple paper. Trim both strips to 7” long and sponge edges Pearlescent Crimson. Adhere strips to card.

10. Use liquid glue to adhere corrugated shape, flower, and charm to card; let dry.

11. Use liquid glue to adhere clay leaves to card; let dry

by Iris Weiss for Polyform Products

Give Thanks Chalkboard

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day


To make this Thanksgiving season truly special, ask family members to list a blessing on this chalkboard each day until the holiday arrives. Or, make several as placecards for the holiday meal.


  • Chalkboard, 5″x7″
  • Wooden items: beehive, 2″; tulip, 1″; sign, 2″; acorn, 1″; pre-stained easel, 6″
  • Glitter maple leaves
  • Assorted beads and spacers
  • Wire: brass, 20-gauge, 4′ length; black, 22-gauge, 4″ length


  • Delta Ceramcoat Acrylic Paints: Black, White, Empire Gold, Antique Gold, Moroccan Red, Terra Cotta, Raw Sienna, Spice Brown
  • Black fine-tip permanent marker
  • Powdered blush
  • Matte sealer
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • Drill with 1⁄16″ bit
  • Wood glue
  • Bead board (optional)

Basic Supplies

paintbrush, wire cutter, sandpaper, newspaper (to cover work surface)





1. Use wood glue to glue tulip (head) to top of beehive (body). Drill hole in top of chalkboard frame and two holes in opposite sides of sign top.

2. Paint: frame and sign Empire Gold, shade Raw Sienna; acorn Raw Sienna; acorn cap Spice Brown with Antique Gold + Terra Cotta (3:1) brush strokes; turkey head and body Terra Cotta. Draw face as shown. Paint: beak Empire Gold; wattle Moroccan Red. Sand turkey until smooth and shade edges Spice Brown. Apply blush to cheeks. Dot eyes White and pupils Black. Apply sealer. Let dry. Use marker to add line details to turkey edges and to write sign lettering.

3. Use Fig. 1 as tail feather bending guide. Cut 3′ wire length. Working from center feather out to edges, thread beads as desired for a total of five tail sections. (Note: For easier beading, use a bead board to place bead combinations in desired order.) After each section is complete, twist wire to secure. Push feathers together and bend wire ends out at bottom for turkey’s feet (Fig. 2).

4. Use hot glue gun to glue leaves and acorn as desired to frame and turkey to tail. Adhere turkey to frame. Wrap remaining brass wire length around chalk several times and thread end through frame front; twist wire at back to secure. Attach beads to wire end. Thread black wire ends through sign holes and wrap each end around wire to secure.

Chalking in Thanks

The days fly by and the seasons change without a moment’s notice. In today’s busy world, taking a moment to sit back with loved ones and reflect upon all of life’s precious gifts is a priceless luxury. The holidays bring families closer together and heighten everyone’s appreciation for even the small things too often taken for granted. If you choose to create the placecards, ask each guest before the meal begins to write down at least one thing they’re thankful for this past year. Maybe someone overcame an illness, came home from patriotic duties, or was blessed with the birth of a new child. Even in the aftermath of personal and family hardships, take the time to try and find the day’s and future’s silver lining.

by Meggan Maravich

Fall Bake Sale Treats

Hello there! I’m so excited to be joining you with my first post as part of the Crafts ’n things Blog Team. My name is Alice Golden and I live in Massachusetts with my husband of 23 years, three teenage boys, a dog and two cats. I’ve loved arts and crafts for as long as I can remember, but it wasn’t until my youngest son was born 13 years ago that I started working in the industry. One of my favorite things about my job is teaching classes, so I was thrilled when Crafts ’n things asked if I would be interested in sharing ideas with their readers twice a month on this brand new blog.

Today I have some ideas that combine two of my favorite hobbies – baking and paper crafting. It seems like fall is full of opportunities for creating yummy baked goods. Whether it is making a treat for a friend, goodies for a class party, or something special for a family celebration, a homemade delicacy is always sure to delight.

For many school organizations and community groups a national election is a fundraising opportunity not to be missed. Next Tuesday here in the U.S., in addition to choosing the next President, you’ll most likely be faced with lots of tasty choices at the ubiquitous Election Day Bake Sale. If you are helping out with a bake sale, I have a few ways for you to put your crafting skills to good use.

By using a few inexpensive paper goods and craft supplies – many are probably things you already have on hand – you can turn a humble cookie, brownie, or loaf of bread into something that looks like it came from a high-end bakery… and will get top dollar at your bake sale.

Using cellophane bags – not thin plastic ones, but the stiffer ones that make a crinkling sound – makes a huge difference. You can find them in a variety of sizes and they don’t cost that much… on average just a few cents each. I got these from

I also like using glassine bags. Many online retailers carry these – try searching for “glassine envelopes” or “glassine sleeves”. I used a glue stick to attach the strip of red and white paper to the top of the bag for a custom look.

I found these unbleached, natural waxed paper bags at my local grocery store for less than 5 cents each. A circle punch and sticker help to quickly make a label.

There are usually a lot of kids in tow with their parents, so having a few items geared to the younger crowd is a good idea.

Miniature loaves of bread always seem to be a big hit at bake sales. Cover up plastic wrap with strips of patterned paper, ribbons, and a tag.

This is a great way to use up paper scraps too… even a 1” wide strip of paper can come in handy. Don’t have any ribbon on hand? Try using inexpensive jute garden twine instead for a rustic look. You can create your own tag using punches or die cuts, or use a pre-made tag from the office supply store.

If you are making lots of one thing, use your computer and printer to create labels. Print an entire sheet and then punch or die cut one at a time (this is a perfect job to do while catching up on your favorite fall television shows).

If you are using a die that you can’t see through, try creating a template out of a scrap of cardstock. Place the opening over the spot you want to cut and then use that to help position the die.

I cut a slit in the template to make it easier to remove when the die is in place. I also use a piece of tape to help hold the die in place.

Who could resist a brownie wrapped up in parchment paper and tied with baker’s twine? The tag came from the office supply store.

Hope I have given you some useful ideas today… at the very least, I bet I’ve made you hungry! Please take a minute to say hello and let us know what types of projects you would be most interested in seeing in the future.

Happy Halloween!

Alice Golden from Golden Moments (


Fall Fleece Pumpkin

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day


Decorate your home with this quick-and-easy pumpkin – make in various sizes and shades to create your own unique pumpkin patch!


  • Orange fleece, 12” x 24”
  • Polyester fiberfill
  • Jute twine, 2-ply
  • Natural raffia
  • Brown paper lunch bag


  • Sewing needle with orange thread
  • Glue gun and sticks

Basic Supplies

scissors, ruler



Adult supervision for kids is needed when using a glue gun.


1. With right sides together, use a running stitch to sew short ends of fleece together in a 1/2” seam. Use long running stitches to sew along one long edge, pull up threads to gather, knot and clip threads. Turn fleece right side out. Stuff with fiberfill. Gather stitch at top of pumpkin; knot and clip threads.

2. To make the grooved sections, cut a 22” length from twine. Center twine at bottom of pumpkin, and pull up ends to make slight indent; tie ends together in a knot at top. Repeat two more times so grooved sections are approximately 4” apart. Trim twine ends.

3. For stem, measure 5” from top of bag and cut; discard bottom. Leaving bottom of stem flared out, twist remaining portion of bag forming a stem. Adhere stem to top of pumpkin. Tie several strands of raffia in a bow around stem.


For larger or smaller pumpkins, follow above instructions, cutting different size pieces of fleece. Use various shades of orange if desired.

by Sharon Cindrich

Leafy Inspiration

Hello, crafters! My name is Suzanne Czosek and I’m excited to be part of the new Crafts ‘n things Blog Team. I live in northern Illinois with my husband, three kids, and two dogs. I will be sharing my creative ideas with you here twice each month.

Fall breezes are blowing here in Illinois. The leaves on the trees are painted in beautiful hues of yellow, orange and red. I decided to go out and pick up a few leaves from outside to use on an autumnal card.

I started with my leaves, STAEDTLER Aquarell Watercolor Crayons, and a STAEDTLER drawing paper to create this leaf inspired card:

To create my background, I laid the leaves vein side up onto my work surface. I placed the drawing paper over the leaves. Next, I peeled away the watercolor crayon wrapper to expose the crayon and rubbed the crayon lengthwise over the leaves under the paper. This creates the outline of the leaves on the paper.

Helpful Tip: The drawing paper was a lighter weight of cardstock and allowed the technique to capture texture from the paper and the veins. The heavier the cardstock, the more pressure you need to apply to make the veins appear.

To allow the watercolor crayon to soften and to add a splash of fall colors, the surface was spritzed with yellow, orange and red Glimmer Mists. The red was squirted a few times to get splotches of red. Let dry.

To add a little more definition to the leaves, I colored in the leaves using STAEDTLER Aquarell watercolor pencils and a waterbrush.

To finish off the card, mount the leafy background onto ivory cardstock.

Stamp Artistic Outpost Old Grist Mill leaf onto white cardstock using yellow, orange, red and brown dye inks. Cut out leaves with detail scissors.

Add Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Crackle Paint over leaves; let dry.

Stamp Memory Box Happy Fall stamp onto ivory cardstock using brown ink. Cut into tag shape and punch hole at end.

Tie twine several times around leafy background and attach tag and leaves. Mount onto brown card base.

Hope this inspires you to head out and look for some beautiful autumn leaves. Happy fall!

Suzanne Czosek from Suzz’s Stamping Spot (

Quick Knit Fingerless Gloves

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day


When the cold wind starts blowing, these fingerless gloves are a sure way to keep your hands warm and fingers free. From only one skein of yarn, you can knit several pairs!


  • Coats & Clark Red Heart Super Saver Yarn: Pretty ’n Pink (solid) or Pink Camo (multi-colored), 1 skein


  • Knitting needles, size 8
  • Sewing needle and coordinating thread

Basic Supplies

scissors, ruler



One size fits most adult women or teens.


15 sts = 4”; 21 rows = 4”


1. Cast on 30 sts.

2. Work in St st (K 1 row, P 1 row) to 8”. End P row. Bind off.


1. Fold in half lengthwise with right sides together. Sew seam 5” from one edge and 2” from opposite edge, leaving 1-1/2” opening for thumb.

2. Weave in ends. Turn right side out.

by Kathleen Sams for Coats & Clark