pumpkin-spiration

Friends, it’s time!  Fall is officially here.  Yay!  I am ready to do some pumpkin picking and jack-o-lantern carving!  And I’m waiting for the leaves to change colors right before my eyes!  Yahoo!  How about you?

Yesterday, I spent the afternoon visiting several fab antique shops.  The trip to Western MD/Northern VA was somewhat spontaneous however I’ve long anticipated stepping foot in these shops…Chartreuse & Co., Sweet Clover and The Old Lucketts Store.  Sometimes you just need a good ol’ fashioned road trip!  My excursion has definitely given me the inspiration and kick in the pants I needed.

chartreuse & co.

I love this simple, spooky vignette at Lucketts…I might have to put something similar together.

lucketts

I also had the pleasure of meeting Cassie at Sweet Clover.  What a doll!  I’ve been following her blog for years and feel like I know her life story so it was fun to meet her in person.  Plus, she and her partners curated a great barn sale full of vintage goodness.  Yes, I found some new treasures!  Bonus, Cassie schooled me on how to take a decent selfie…

sweet clover

Sometimes some new scenery is just the right dose of inspiration!  I’m headed to a milk paint workshop for the next two days.  I’m sure even more inspiration will strike.  Can’t wait to share.

With that said, let me share a few pumpkin projects today that may inspire you…

Stocking Pumpkin: Even easier than carving a pumpkin – just pop it into a fishnet or graphic stocking for instant spooktackular impact.

IMG_2417

Safety in Numbers: There’s something so simply appealing about an abundance of mini pumpkins or gourds.  It looks great with reindeer moss, pinecones, acorns and other natural elements too.  Start filling a dough bowl or harvest basket!

mini pumpkins in abundance

Pumpkin Tea Lights: Easy!  Just carve out the top and pop a tea light candle in.

pumpkin tea light

Vomiting Pumpkin Salsa: So gross but so good!  Seriously, this carved pumpkin face makes such a conversation piece at a Halloween party.

jack-o-lantern salsa

If you missed it, check out my farmers market roundup for more simple, fall decor!  What’s inspiring you this fall?

farmers market roundup

I’m usually that girl who plants mums in August and has pumpkins out for Labor Day.  This year, however, I have been reluctant to say goodbye to summer.  I’m simply not going to do it ’til summer is really over.  At the end of September.

But I can’t deny the crisp air and winding down humidity so I have been thinking about switching out my seasonal decor and introducing some late summer favorites.  I love this time of year at the farmer’s market.  The colors, textures and pickins’ are in abundance.  Not only do I want to eat the season’s harvest but I want to decorate with it!

fall bistro table

Here are a few decorating ideas that will bring the changing season in without breaking your budget.  If you’re lucky, you might already have these crops growing in your own backyard garden.  If not, you know where to go!

Indian Corn Wreath:  Husks of Indian corn aren’t just for the lamp-post.  Pick up clusters of mini Indian corn which show a variety of colors.  Attach them to a wire form and you have yourself a new wreath plus a squirrel’s feast.  These are best hung between a storm door and front door or you won’t have anything left in a matter of hours!

mini Indian corn fall harvest wreath

Hot Pepper Wreath:  Pick up some hot peppers next time you’re at the market.  If you can find a surplus of them, you’ll get a better deal.  Wire them up to wreath form for new door decor.

hot pepper wreath

Farmers Market Vignette:  This vignette is nothing more than colorful, seasonal squashes and a pumpkin mixed with locally grown flowers that are drying out.  Arrange them amongst some other items that are already on hand like a rusty old scale and homemade pumpkin for instant impact!  When you’re not sure about what’s for dinner, slice open that squash and steam it.

fall vignette

Mumkin:  There is always the classic pumpkin planter stand by.  Grab a large pumpkin and 6 inch mum at the market.  Carve and hollow the pumpkin.  Plant the mum, pot and all, directly into the pumpkin planter.

Mumkin

Seed Packet Art:  If you can’t bring the freshness of the harvest inside, you can always create your own original seed packet art.  I duplicated a few vintage seed graphics last fall with paint and reclaimed wood.

vintage sunflower seed pack reproduction sign

last call

These mini pumpkins really have made their rounds this fall.  They’ve been on the mantel, in centerpieces, in a cornucopia, on the dining table…and now they officially have a death sentence.  So harsh I know.

They’re last meal will be on Thursday.  After Thanksgiving they’re out.  So I made them into pumpkin votive candles.  I simply carved the top and popped tea lights in. 

Done and done.

They revived the mantel and might just make an appearnace as a Thanksgiving table centerpiece. 

I’m officially over carving pumpkins of any sort this season.  Bring on the Christmas greens!

Linking to:

Home Stories A2Z

happy halloween

Boo!

I’m still not over the fact that it snowed this weekend.  I know.  I am acting like it was a blizzard of epic proportions but the sheer fact that we got about 4-6 inches in October is debilitating enough.  It’s just weird and doesn’t happen in PA.

So unfortunately our festive costume party that was planned among friends for Saturday night was seriously scaled back.  Only the diehards made it out.  What did they dress up as?  So glad you asked…

Zombies.  Yes, that is Zombie Flo from Progressive.

Ceiling Fan & Window Fan.  Punny.

Sexy Pirate.  Fred Flintstone.  Sexy Baseball Player.

Reversed Religion.  Catholic & Jewish.

Flapper & Karate Sensei.

And the best costume went to…drumroll please…Mother Nature & Father Time.

Ryan, Wilson and I dressed as Little Red Riding Hood & the Big Bad Wolf.

Doesn’t Wilson make a cute grandmother?

Although it seemed like we should be dancing along to “the weather outside is frightful…”  we managed to play scary music, indulge in apple cider and eat spooky treats…like jack-o-lantern vom.

The snow is beginning to melt here just in time for tonight’s trick-or-treaters!  What is your best Halloween costume?  

Happy Halloween!

mini mumkin

The original mumkin was such a hit that I decided it was time for a spinoff. 
Meet the mini mumkin. 

This petite mumkin makes the perfect centerpiece for any fall occasion.  I put together a few minis for my friend’s bridal shower this past weekend.  The mini mumkins gave just the right fall vibe.  The arrangement would also make a nice wedding centerpiece.

Thanks to pinterest the original mumkin has received a ton of traffic and a number of comments and emails.  I hope to answer your questions today with another tutorial.

Again, we start with a pumpkin and a fall plant of your choice.  The plant’s pot needs to be plastic, not the biodegradable papery type.  It also needs to be slightly smaller than the pumpkin.  In the case of the original mumkin, I used a large pumpkin and a 4 inch potted mum.  You could get crazy and get an extra large pumpkin and pair it with a 6 inch or gallon size potted plant.

I like the small version.  The mini mumkin is partnered with a pansy in a small individual pot.  This pot is larger than a market pack cell.   Should it be called a pankin?  pansy + pumpkin

Carve the top of the pumpkin slightly larger than the pot.  You have to scoop all of the pumpkin guts out.  And then scoop some more.  I use a spoon to “shave” the inside layer off of the pumpkin.  This is important because you want to eliminate as much moisture as possible.

Then let the pumpkin dry out.  I usually let it sit for just a couple of hours before adding the plant.  Again, it is about getting the moisture out of the pumpkin.  Once it is ready, I place the potted plant in the pumpkin.  Never take the plant out of its original plastic pot.  Direct contact between the soil and pumpkin will cause the pumpkin to rot quickly.  If you need to water the plant, remove it from the pumpkin and make sure it drains completely before putting it back in.

In the case of the mini mumkin, I added spanish moss to unite the pumpkin and the pansy.  You could slightly see the top of the pot.  The moss hid that and gave it a finished look.  The original mumkin just needed a bow to dress it up.  It is really your choice how you want to finish your arrangement.  I received questions about bows too.  More about that in a future post.

I received several questions about how long the mumkin should last.  Mine lasted exactly 2 weeks.  The environment the mumkin is left in directly influences this though.  I displayed mine in our sunroom which is cold and also covered from rain and direct sun.  The cool temperature preserves the pumpkin from rotting.  This is similar to putting produce in a refrigerator to lengthen its shelf life.  You may want to display it on a front porch under a roof.  Displaying your mumkin inside a warm home will definitely shorten its life.  If you choose to make mumkins for a table centerpiece for say Thanksgiving or a wedding, do it as close to the event as possible so they look fresh. 

Several readers said that they would make this arrangement with a “funkin”, a fake pumpkin.  That will obviously lengthen the shelf life.  I personally prefer the real thing.  I wonder what we would call a funkin mumkin.  A fumkin?  Fu-umkin?  These name choices are endless.

Linking to:

Home Stories A2ZSaved by Suzy

mumkin

Hello there punkin!

Can you believe October is upon us already?  That means it is time to go pumpkin picking!  My fave…

Here is an out of the box use for a pumpkin.  It becomes a unique fall planter.  My SIL dubbed it a “mumkin”…can’t take credit for that one but I sure do love it!

Pick a large pumpkin.  Carve the top wide enough to fit a 4 inch or 6 inch plant.  Clean out the inside of the pumpkin and let it dry.

Once it is dry, insert the plant leaving it in its nursery pot.  It is really important that you leave the pot around the soil.  I learned the hard way a few years ago that if you plant the soil in the pumpkin it will rot almost immediately.  It is just too much moisture for the pumpkin.  Also remove the plant from the pumpkin when watering.  Let all of the water drain before re-planting.  Try not to get any excess water in the pumpkin.


Then the fun part…decorating!  I chose a chocolate brown satin ribbon to contrast with all of the orange.  You could use raffia or moss to finish it off or even decorate the pumpkin with glitter.

There you have a mumkin!  It makes the perfect fall centerpiece.

Check out the mini mumkin here!