DIY Pumpkin Cushions

How to Paint  Pumpkin Pillow Covers

These painted pumpkin cushion covers are large and bright.  Did you ever notice on the design shows their cushions are always large?  Painting your own cushion covers  allows you to upsize your cushion covers for the more luxurious look.  These DIY pumpkin cushions are surprisingly easy and fun to paint  If you have a teen you want to get involved in crafting, these painted cushions are a great way to spend a couple hours together.

Painted Pumpkin Designs and How to Make Pillow Covers on a couch.

These are easy to make when you break them down into individual steps.    I always say I am crafty, I am NOT artsy.  If I can paint these pumpkin pillows I am certain you can paint them.

Painted Pumpkin on DIY Pillow Covers for Neutral Fall Decor.

DIY Pumpkin Pillow Cover Tutorial


I made my own cushion covers, as I had the cotton and I find it easier to make them, then to shop for the large ones.  I have found an affiliate link to premade cushion covers but I personally haven’t purchased them.  Another alternative is to check out IKEA, just make sure your cushion is 20″ square.

You will need a few materials.

Material for your cushion, (I used heavy muslin)  one piece 20 by 20 inches and two pieces 16 by 20 inches.  Prewash all your material and seal the edges with a Serger or zig zag stitch.

Art paper ( I used children’s art paper from the dollar store), a pencil and a black marker.

Acrylic paint, I used Deco Art Neutral Grey, Burnt Umber, and Snow White.  Of course, you can paint with traditional Fall colours, oranges, browns, and greens.

Tintable Martha Stewart fabric medium, so you can use acrylic paint on fabric.

A plate for mixing the paint and fabric medium, a jar of water, small brushes and a paper towel.

Supplies for how to paint a pumpkin on a DIY cushion cover for fall.

To create a template cut out a piece of paper 20″ by 20″ to match your cushion cover.  Creating a template prior to painting allows you to erase as needed and gives a perspective as to the size of your pumpkin on the blank canvas of the cushion.

Pumpkin outline as part of a how to paint a pumpkin tutorial

Once the pumpkin is drawn and shaped as you like, outline it in black marker to darken the lines.

Outline of a pumpkin as part of how to paint a pumpkin on a pillow cover.

Once this is done, cut a piece of fabric 20 by 20″ piece of fabric for the front of your cushion cover.  Place the fabric good side up over your template and start painting. 4

(If your using a purchased cushion cover, insert a piece of cardboard, and then the template inside the cushion cover.  The cardboard will prevent the paint from leaking the underside.

Paint the outline neutral grey.  Once done, mix the neutral grey with white to get a slightly lighter grey.

Painting the outline of a pumpkin on a handmade cushion cover for fall.

Remember that pumpkins are curved, think about the general shape of a pumpkin and curve your strokes accordingly.

Fill your pumpkin in by section, using long C shaped strokes.

Painting a pumpkin tutorial showing how to add layers of paint of a DIY cushion cover.

As you complete each section, use a small brush and burnt umber to paint along the inside of the pumpkin section outlines.  The colours will blend.

If you put on too much dark paint even it out by adding the grey/white. If your shading is too light add some more burnt umber.

Clean your brush between dark and light colour changes.

To paint the stem.  Fill in with grey, outline with burnt umber, and add a few extra strokes for texture.

Pumpkins in nature come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and imperfections.  Have fun painting these,  they don’t need to be perfect to give the allusion of a pumpkin.

Let dry thoroughly before you start sewing.   Heat set the paint with a dry iron (described on Martha Stewart’s fabric medium).    Now you’re ready to sew.

Sewing  Simple Pumpkin Cushion Covers

To make a cushion cover you already have the front piece cut.  Now cut two more pieces of material 20″ by 16″.

Make a rolled hem on one edge of each piece.  Fold your fabric over 1/2 inch and iron.  Then fold it over 1 inch and iron.  Sew along the edge creating a hem.  Repeat for the other piece.

A pinned cushion cover with a painted pumpkin pattern.


Pin the two pieces to the front of your pumpkin cushion covers as shown above.  Sew with a 5/8 inch seam around all seams.

Then finish all the seams by sewing a zig zag stitch.  You need a 20 by 20″ pillow insert, if you don’t already have one, I like the pillow inserts from IKEA.  They are stuffed nicely and inexpensive.

Pretty DIY cushion cover with painted pumpkin for fall decorating.
A white pillow cover with neutral hand painted pumpkin.


  1. What an amazing looking pillow! I love that you actually painted it. Your pumpkin pillow turned out fabulous!

  2. Love your pumpkin pillows Leanna!! Such a great idea to paint your own so you can match the colouring of your decor!!

  3. Your pillows are beautiful and would look so good on my couch! Great job, Leanna!

  4. I am so attracted to the muted colors you used on your pumpkin pillows. I would love to find the time to make some–or even just one! We’ll see; life is pretty busy right now as I have my twin five-year-old grandsons staying at my house w/their mother right now. They keep me pretty busy as you can imagine!

    Anyway, I love your cushions. You did a great job!

    1. LeannaForsythe says:

      Thank you Maria: I have done some painting for Christmas before but never for fall. I am really proud of these cushions. Thanks for commenting

  5. These are lovely and perfect for the fall. Thanks for sharing your tutorial at Snickerdoodle. Pinning.

  6. Beautiful work, my friend. Beautiful work. Pinned to my Fall board. Best wishes for the week ahead. Keep truckin’. Linda

    1. LeannaForsythe says:

      Thanks Linda. They really are fast to put together and easier than applique is for sure.

  7. Your pumpkins turned out really lovely, almost like Pottery Barn. I actually paint with watercolor and while we’re spending a couple of weeks here at our cottage, I”m hoping to get some painting accomplished and maybe make up a few free printables for autumn. Your tutorial was great!

    1. LeannaForsythe says:

      I wish I was an artist, i especially adore watercolour art. Its so soft and the colours are calming.


  8. Leanna, your pumpkin cushions are absolutely beautiful! They’d go perfectly with my style and decor, I think I have to make some now! Love the colours you used, so pretty!!!

    1. LeannaForsythe says:

      Hi Katrin: I much prefer the neutral colours to the bright oranges for fall. I still have quite a few orange fall decor items, but I am phasing them out. Thanks for commenting. Leanna

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.