The morning air is getting crisper, and the evenings are growing shorter which means we’re drawer closer to fall! I have been loving all of the fall decor inspiration that features more subtle hues and white accent pieces, but what I don’t love is the price tag that comes with those trendy items. What can I say, I have champagne taste on a beer budget. SO, I hit the local dollar store and found these small plastic pumpkins and that’s when the lights went off – I could turn these guys into the fall foliage of my dreams with just a few adjustments.
Cheap Plastic Pumpkins
Hot Glue Gun
Add Some Texture
One thing that I’ve noticed gives dollar store items a cheap look is the overly shinny quality. To fix this, I found a unique technique that adds that much needed texture while also showing some of the original color through the upcoming paint job. All that you do is paint on a layer of tacky glue! Grab your paint brush and add a light layer of glue over the entire surface and wait for it to dry completely.
Once the glue has dried, you may slightly question my sanity because it appears that they have become more shiny than before, but trust me – it will come together in the end! Next, I used an oatmeal colored chalk paint from Hobby Lobby that I mixed with a small amount of an oyster white acrylic paint and gave the pumpkins a light coat, making sure that all of my brush strokes went in a vertical direction across the pumpkin. Note that after one coat, I removed the plastic stems and gave them a coat of a basic brown acrylic paint and set them aside to dry.
Shabby Chic Pumpkins
As you can see from the picture above, the pumpkins dried with these lovely rustic “cracks” in the paint. Essentially, the glue acted as a barrier between the plastic and the paint and created this shabby texture! At this point, I re-attached my stems with the help of my trusty hot glue gun and I was satisfied with how they turned out. I decided to call it quits at this point, but for an added layer of interest, you could also use your paint brush and add a “splatter” of darker color on the sides. The great thing about dollar store pumpkins is even if you make a mistake… they are very affordable so it’s fun to experiment! Below is a closer look at how these cute little pumpkins turned out.
Final Fall Display
I completed this look by tossing these shabby chic pumpkins in basket with a collection of fall foliage, including fabric leaves, pinecones, acorns, and some green and orange gourds. This came together inside my large galvanized metal serving tray which housed a rustic painted mason jar filled to the brim with a pop of traditional fall flowers, a fall candle, and my mason jar salt and pepper shakers. This entire project came together for only $5 and less than a half an hour, including dry-time.
What do you think – will you give this idea a try? Until next time!