I have to admit, I took my inspiration from kirstie allsopp's new "craft" book - which features a papier mâché snowman piñata - my thinking was - if you can do a snowman - I must be able to create a pumpkin!
Also, I wanted to replicate a pumpkin rather than do a real one for 2 reasons,
1) I felt that my 2 year old could join in more and 2) I don't actually have anywhere safe to put a lit pumpkin in the house at the moment!
I haven't done papier mâché for about 20 years and it was the first time Blake has done papier mâché so if your expecting something amazing - you might want to pop over to red ted art instead! (my fave children's craft blog)
Ok so firstly we blew up a balloon - a free one from mcdonalds - and covered it in olive oil - really you should cover the balloon in Vaseline but I didn't have any so I thought I'd try oil instead!
Then I divided a newspaper up - I split 1 page into 3 long strips and kept going until we had a large pile of paper.
To make the paste, we added one cup of flour and two cups of water to a bowl and Blake mixed it all up with a wooden spoon... which he looooved to do!
We dipped the paper strips into the paste and layered on the ballon until it was fully coated, Blake really enjoyed this bit!
It usually takes about 4 hours for a layer to dry, we left it overnight and did a second layer the next day.
Our intention was to paint it orange but we couldn't find orange paint anywhere! Our first point of call was elc but they didn't have orange, we also tried smiths, hawkin bizarre and that book shop next to patisserie vallerie in the glades (where we did buy a pack of cheap small felt sheets for 99p to use for the pumpkin's face features) . I'm guessing rymans down at Bromley south would have had some but I didn't fancy the walk.
As an alternative I decided to try orange tissue paper from paperchase.
I wasn't sure if a layer of orange tissue papier mâché would work but there's only one way to find out!
We left our orange pumpkin to dry over night again on the kitchen window.
Unfortunately it was a sorry sight the next morning and I'm not sure what went wrong! The balloon had shrunk inside so maybe that was to blame for it's deformity, or maybe it was because that night was particularly cold and it didn't get to dry out properly on the side that was closest to the window, or maybe a third layer was one to many. Maybe the oil instead of vaseline ruined it? I'm not sure.
The orange tissue papier mâché layer did not work at all, not only was there the scary looking deformity but also, it just didn't look nice at all!
As a fix it job we but the pumpkin's best side forward and covered in orange tissue paper - just as it is and pritt sticked it on!
We then stuck on black felt cut outs for eyes, nose and mouth and a green card for it stem / hair, i did the cutting out and pointing, Blake did the sticking!
Et voila ... Toddler friendly pumpkin!
While I don't like to encourage trick or treating, I do love Halloween parties, dressing up and the fun it brings!
Halloween is a great time to do crafts with your little one and be a bit more creative with food too.
Loved getting messy and trying something new and this craft was easy for my two year old to do, he did most of this - even down to sticking the face details on.
Emma in Bromley xx