BLOG Painting Pumpkins White - An easy way to paint faux pumpkins to make them look amazingly real.  
White mini pumpkins are very popular again this year! I had several people comment recently about the Baby Boo’s I used to decorate StoneGable with this fall.Apparently, mini white pumpkins are not available everywhere… but no problem. We can fix that!

I had a big bag full of orange pumpkins that I painted to look like Baby Boo’s…



white pumpkin with checkered ribbon -

Today is THROWBACK FRIDAY. I decorated and posted my fall mantel on Wednesday and got so many comments and email asking if the white pumpkins on the mantel were real. No, they are not! It’s still too early in my area for white pumpkins. No problem as I said in the intro. I paint faux orange pumpkins white. Easy peasy! You can do it too and always have amazing white pumpkins to decorate with for years! This is such an easy diy and YOU CAN DO IT TOO!

The pumpkins started out like this….
 And ended up like this…
 White pumpkins have lots of soft yellow undertones. I wanted to capture them as realistically as I could.

Here’s how I did it…

Step By Step Painting Mini Pumpkins White - stonegableblog


1. Choose orange mini pumpkins.

2. Paint them with 2 coats of Old White Annie Sloan Chalk Paint
(or warm white acrylic paints)

3. Make a “sludge” with clear wax and Country Grey Annie Sloan Chalk Paint
(or use a clear wax and a yellow gold acrylic paint)

Use only a tiny bit of paint, about one or two drops to 1 tsp of wax. Mix together and  that is a sludge.

4. Wax the pumpkin. If you need a little more color add another drop of Country Grey to the sludge and rewax the pumpkin.

Let the wax dry and buff with a soft white cotton rag.

5. Pull out the plastic stem of each pumpkin.

Glue a real pumpkin or gourd stem in its place.

I pop off the stems of real pumpkins and gourds every year and save them.

To pop off a pumpkin stems, put pressure against the side of the stem at its base with your thumb and it should pop off!

Towards the end of the season, I visit my local greenhouses and ask if I can have pumpkin stems from their discarded pumpkins.

 I tied a black and white checkered ribbon around the stem of these little white pumpkins … aren’t they so sassy?
I have a few fun fall projects using white painted pumpkins coming soon!

You might want to pin this to you fall or diy Pinterest board. Or follow StoneGable’s Pinterest boards by clicking HERE.




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  1. Tracy Longhenry says:

    Great tip about the real stem trick! Love it’s!

  2. Thank you for the instructions & special tip about the stems!

  3. so darling! I will be trying this for sure this Fall!

  4. Will try this. Looked everywhere for faux white ones. No luck. Thanks for the how too!

  5. nancy mcneill says:

    thank you for the directions. i love the ribbon too. just pinned it!!!!

  6. Aline Landry says:

    Good idea and looks easy…..

  7. Yvonne, great tips, especially saving the stems! Happy Labor Day Weekend, Pam @ Everyday Living

  8. Gayle Mathues says:

    I have a friend with a fence full of vining gourds! guess whee I am going today! Love white pumpkins, and those with a bluish grey cast. Since I do NOT like orange in decorating that is a good thing!

  9. Lorraine Hitchcock says:

    Great idea. I use white pumpkins every year, but frankly, some are not really white- kind of a blah beige. Thanks for the tip to save the pumpkin stems!

  10. Linda Gilliam says:

    Awesome, white pumpkins aren’t available here in Missouri yet either, thanks for the help, yours DO look so REAL!

  11. Melissa Leach says:

    Too cute! I love Fall 🙂

  12. Susan, NJ says:

    They all look so real. Great idea about getting stems.
    They look charming

  13. Oh, thank you, thank you. What a perfectly timed post. I have been wondering how to paint all my orange pumpkins as the chalk paint alone just didn’t look right and I was afraid it would peel. The “sludge” of wax is the perfect answer. Yvonne, you are a treasure.

  14. Sassy is right! That idea about realistic stems is brilliant! Will do.

  15. I save pumpkin stems every year also. I use them for my fabric pumpkins and now I will use them on painted ones also. I can’t wait to get to my pumpkin farm and get some real ones which are coming out soon.

  16. I saved my stems from last year’s pumpkins. One step in the right direction. Thank you for sharing.

  17. They look so real! I love white pumpkins.

  18. Clare Godleski says:

    I guess there are a lot of us that save pumpkin stems each year. I guess I am not as crazy as I think I am!!! LOL

  19. Michael’s have faux white pumpkins with a 40% off coupon. However, think that painting se real of them would be fun! Thanks for the tutorial, Evonne, and the tip about the stems! Have a great Labor Day weekend!

  20. Pat Snyder says:

    Love the idea of using real pumpkin stems. Makes such a difference. Thanks.

  21. i was one of the askers, so thanks!! and for extra bonus points, you threw in the waxing tip! you are so kind, Ms. Genius!

  22. I love saving pumpkin stems. I even started saving zucchini stems.

  23. Nothing saw fall like a pumpkin!

  24. I love mini pumpkins! It’s hard to find the white ones so love the tip on painting them. I stick them everywhere in the fall

  25. Vicki N. Martin says:

    Love the little pumpkins too and the white with the checker black and white ribbon is just different. I like it.

  26. I love theses white Pumpkins ! So cute !

  27. Laurene Shewan says:

    I’m dragging my orange ones out today! Love this idea. Thanks for sharing the details.

  28. I never would have thought to save pumpkin stems – such a great idea!! I actually love orange pumpkins and how they look with all of my decor, but I think it would be fun to add some white ones, too. I’ve pinned your tutorial.

  29. These are adorable, I love the black and white checked ribbon too! I wish I would have thought of saving the stems from last years pumpkins and gourds! I have asked my grocer for the stems in the bottom of the pumpkin box in the past!

    1. Broken-off twigs from the garden work nicely also – if you find the right shape and a realistic diameter. Sometimes, I also paint the (plastic) stems with brown and/or a touch of green acrylic craft paint and find I don’t necessarily have to remove the plastic stems IF they look authentic.

  30. Your inspiration never ceases to amaze me! I plan on using my real baby boos along with some I’ve painted in my fall decor this year. All thanks to reading your blog for several years! I hate to tell you how many ideas I have stolen from you!!

  31. Great idea! Thanks Yvonne! I love the idea of using real stems! You are so sassy….just like your little pumpkins!!!!

  32. This is right up my alley. First off, I love anything black and white. Then to incorporate it into the Fall season and pumpkins! Wonderful. I have that ribbon so this is a definite project that is going on my list.

  33. Dorinda Selke says:

    Yvonne, your secret of popping off the ugly plastic stems and adding the natural stems is what makes everyone think those faux pumpkins are the real thing!! You are so smart to think of that !!!! I’m going to start a shoebox of stems ! Hugs, Dorinda

  34. Victoria Schwalbe says:

    I found a “chalking ” medium to turn any water soluble acrylic paint into the matte finish we are so fond of at a fraction of the price. I have a lot of little bottles of craft paint and can mix to get the exact shade I want. Got it at Hobby Lobby with my 40% off coupon. More inspiration from you. LOVE white pumpkins but not always the price.We grow pumpkins so I have stems. Never even thought about saving them. You are a wonder!!!!

  35. Karen Sweitzer says:

    Love this look. . yet it won’t break the bank!! Love the fact that you added real stems!! AWESOME!!

  36. Saving real pumpkin stems for glueing on faux pumpkins is brilliant! I have a few faux pumpkins that I have painted but the stem is the real giveaway. Hopefully I would have thought of it at some point, but thanks for the idea. So great.

  37. I remember this post. Love which pumpkins

  38. Julie Maier says:

    Love, love, love! Love that they look so real. Love that it’s easy to do. And love that it saves me money year after year.

  39. Sherry Pelle says:

    I love the tip of switching out the faux stem for a real one! It really makes the pumpkin look authentic.

  40. Thanks for the tip about pumpkin stems!! I just bought 7 beautiful medium sized pumpkins (orange) at the Dollar Tree, but the stems are really fake looking. I plan to paint them white and now I know what to do for the stems. I am going to use them on my inside staircase that is open part way. You always come up with solution for any decorating problem that I have. Thanks again and keep posting those great tips.

  41. Yvonne, you are so clever! Save real pumpkin stems, who would have thought to do that. Your pumpkins are

  42. I was wondering about the stems & they sure make the pumpkins look real. I love the bow tied to the stems!

  43. Marilyn Craighead says:

    Oh my goodness… talk about timing! One of my projects for the weekend! I hope my little pumpkins look as cute as yours!

  44. Carol Elkins says:

    Thank you for the instructions on how to do this. I know what I will be doing this week! Love your blog!

  45. These white mini pumpkins are so cute! I purchased the last two that were available at our dollar store, so now I’ll make some more, thanks to your tutorial.

  46. will it work to use craft paint because that is the only paint I have and I do not have any wax also. I love the stool.

  47. This fall when we go to the pumpkin patch, I’ll look for the ones with large stems. I love the gingham ribbon. This summer I bought 2 pink dogwood twig wreaths and hung them with long black/white ribbons and a bow. I’ve received so many compliments. Can’t wait to see your projects using white pumpkins. First thing in the morning I read your blog faithfully. We have a boutique that uses these gingham ribbons throughtout the store. That is their stamp.

  48. These are super cute! I love white pumpkins. I have never been a big fan of orange in my home decor, but what is Autumn without pumpkins? The checked ribbon and real stems just “make” them!

  49. Love em!!! Do you ever sleep?!!! You are my go to for inspiration, Yvonne.
    I find being creative takes it’s toll on my brain sometimes, hard to shut off at nite.
    We are a unique bunch…
    Thanks again, I appreciate all your ideas…

  50. So cute and such talent, I will be painting mine. Thank you for all you teach us. ??

  51. Great how-to on painting pumpkins, cannot wait to try it. Thanks for the inspiration

  52. Yvonne, you are brilliant! Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

  53. So cute…love the ribbon and the way you have them sitting on the black bench with the candy corn!!

  54. Clever you and all your readers who save pumpkin stems – would never have thought of it. Adds the perfect finishing detail. Thank you for another great idea!

    Have wonderful and safe Labor Day weekend

  55. I loved this last year & love it even more this year! One question–where would I find clear wax? TY

    1. You can find clear wax at any hardware store or my favorite is Amy Howard’s Light Antiquing Wax at any Ace Hardware.

  56. Love the Baby Boos. Now I just need to find a bag of them to paint. Thank you, Yvonne, for a great tutorial.

  57. Can’t wait to try the white pumpkin painting.

  58. Jayne McLeod says:

    a big Thank you once again for these delightful little pumpkins … I plan on painting some up this week-end … Happy Fall !!!
    Enjoy the SONshine, Jayne (Canada)

  59. They look so realistic!

  60. Judy Levin says:

    I love the idea of using a real pumpkin stem. I have some large pumpkins I plan to transform.

  61. The white pumpkins with the gingham ribbon is adorable!

  62. I love the color orange. In fact, I decorate with it. I too love orange pumpkins, but I do so love the white ones more for interior décor. I will definitely try this one. Thanks for the tools to learn how to do it.

  63. Candy J Weiford says:

    Was going to place a small glass “orange” pumpkin under glass, in front of a mirror on my mantle. I love white pumpkins! Will be trying this. Thank you

  64. thank you for the fabulous tip of the “sludge wax” finish. I,m excited to start painting pumpkins!
    Sometimes I can find pretty interesting stems while pruning my grape vines.

  65. Nancy Silva says:

    Can’t wait to try the sludge technique. Last year I decopauged torn book pages on my little white pumpkins. I think your technique would be the finishing touch they lacked. Thank you!

  66. Isela Lopez says:

    Love them,

    Thank you

  67. Adorable and thanks for the instructions!

  68. Love those painted white pumpkins. The black & white ribbons make them pretty! I hope you get this comment….some reason I don’t get your blogs anymore??? Hope I will start getting them again because I enjoyed receiving. Thanks, Nancy

  69. Lanita Anderson says:

    Love how the painted pumpkins turned out, especially for your neutral fall mantel! Thanks for sharing the great tips. Blessings to you……

  70. Anne Marie says:

    Love these white pumpkins – your tip about the stem is the best!!

  71. Portia Read says:

    Darling little pumpkins! Love your mantle!

  72. The white pumpkins are beautiful. I will be trying this.

  73. I love baby pumpkins! Thanks for the idea of how to paint them. They will look cute in my dough bowl on the table!

  74. Teresa Alexander says:

    thank you for the tutorial on how to paint the sweet white pumpkins!

  75. Mary Chris says:

    I like the color combinations of the black, whites and oranges. Great job.

  76. Tammy Durham says:

    Oh my! What a great idea painting them white. They are more expensive this yr than in the past and I have tons of orange ones.

  77. Brenda Brewster says:

    I’m not familiar with the sludging of the wax and paint. I assume you are taking about the wax I use on top of my chalk paint.

  78. Thanks for the great tutorial they look so good!

  79. Love this idea. Look forward to trying this next week.

  80. The Annie Sloan was is hard to work with! There are others I’ve seen but can’t remember the names but are almost liquid to apply. Great ideas tho!!!

  81. Great idea! I will definitely have to give this a try!

  82. Donna Hutson says:

    love these white pumpkins. Cutest things.

  83. Kathie Hood says:

    I love the source for pumpkin stems. I will try stores and also my friends. They think I am slightly nuts anyway:))

  84. Sherri S.. says:

    Great idea! I love the ribbon too.

    Thanks for sharing…

  85. Joyce Kennard says:

    Hi Yvonne, Love your creative way with the pumpkins and ribbon. But, I love the little black stool that I have spotted in so many places in your home. Was is it’s history.

  86. I’m grateful for this Labor Day weekend so I can try this. It looks so easy, with SUCH cute results! Love Love Love! Yvonne, you are a gem.

  87. Janice Davis says:

    Beautiful little pumpkins!! So sweet.

    Thanks for the reminder concerning the give a way. Pick me! Pick me! ??

  88. Cuties! Maybe more than I want to take on right now, but adorable!

    I was so excited to find velvet pumpkins at Marshalls today for $4.99/$7.99. I would have been more excited to find more in the neutral tones, but I have plans to search area Marshalls this weekend!

    Oh–and I love the little black stools!!

  89. Theresa Kleinschmidt says:

    Love your adorable little white pumpkins ,thanks for the instructions on how to transform those store bought little pumpkins into something really amazing. I can not wait to make a few for my fall decor.

  90. White pumpkins are very hard to find in the stores. Your “fix” is the answer to this trend! Thanks, Pam

  91. Christi Maze says:

    Thanks for the paint receipe! Can’t wait to get started!

  92. What a great idea, thanks for sharing. Can’t wait to get started!

  93. Beth Beard says:

    Great tutorial. I love the idea of painting pumpkins and adding a real stem is brilliant!

  94. I love the white pumpkins, thanks for sharing.

  95. I am so in love with these little whit pumpkins, printed of the how to.

  96. Julie Garza says:

    Brilliant, Yvonne! Just finished six of these babies while watching football!

    1. Good for you, Julie! That’s what I do too. Work while watching tv. Did your team win. LOVE football season!

  97. Peggy spencer says:

    white pumpkins and black and white gingham ribbon….these are a few of my favorite things.Thanks for the idea about saving the stems off of the pumpkins.My son has a farm,and grows some pumpkins.Off to call him and ask him to save me some!i get so many great ideas from reading your blog.It is the first email I open each day.Thank you

  98. Definitely painting some of my pumpkins white! I have already painted a few with a bronze metallic paint. I think the white and bronze will be pretty together 🙂

  99. Love, love, love these! Thanks for the instructions! I have everything I need to get started!

  100. Oh, my! They do look quite real because of the actual stems you use … I hope I can find some Pumpkin Patch or Garden Center in my area this year to save stems for me, too!
    I have changed quite a few faux pumpkins recently, and instead of actual stems, I “scoured” roadside parks along the highways (on a recent trip or two!) for fallen dried or dead twigs. If the end is not flat/blunt cut and has a twisted sort of look, they actually seem pretty real! A little dry brushing of different brown paints adds even more realism! Note of warning: at some stops we encountered “Watch for Snakes” signs, so I recommend great caution wherever you are gathering nature’s bounty of any kind. Keep an eye out for any stray “critters!” Safety First!
    Thanks for all you share, Yvonne …!!!

  101. Carol A. Wellein says:

    White pumpkins work so well with a beach theme room. Who knew pumpkins and shells would make great partners.

  102. I wondered how you got them to look realistic…….thanks for sharing your tips on “sludge” and the stem idea is genius!

  103. Linda Chapman says:

    Love your articles and especially this one about painting the pumpkins!! Can’t wait to try it on mine!! Also, the stem idea is wonderful!!! Look forward to your page everyday!!! Keep it up and thanks so much!!!

  104. GLORIA BASSETT says:

    LOVE LOVE your blog!!!

  105. Christine Ashkeboussi says:

    The painted pumpkins are so sweet and the pale blue is gorgeous! Now, along with the stem trick, I have a new passion.

  106. NANCY CARR says:

    ADORABLE!!! I wondered why the stems looked so real. Who would have thought to get real ones — except you. This is something I will remember. I love the checked bows, too. Thanks for sharing.

  107. Love the pumpkins! I have been gathering the supplies, can’t wait to try this!

  108. Pam Alastanos says:

    Love these pumpkins! I need stems! ?

  109. Love you blog. I look forward to it everyday.

  110. Sandra G. McNichol says:

    Love it all – thanks!

  111. Deborah B. says:

    I have an on-going love affair with white pumpkins-my second love is black & white gingham…you do it better than I have ever seen !

  112. Alicia Mcalpine says:

    I Love this idea. I painted my old plastic pumpkins. I went one step further and put little flowers and leaves on the top. They’re so pretty I wish I could post a picture

  113. I sooo love this! I have never really liked fall colors other than on the trees and a little orange outside at Halloween, so thiw iw the best! I usually don’t find enough white pumpkins until closer to Thanksgiving, so this will really help. Also, I have saved stems the last few years just because I loved the colors and textures and now I know how to use them! I had kind of collected them in a jar like some people do corks! So many pretty things to look at on your blogs/sites-Yay!

  114. Carol Ann says:

    Love these white pumpkins! I really chuckled (aloud) when I got to the part about using real stems! What a great idea, and SOOOO creative! Another project coming on…

    Can’t wait to see what’s next!

  115. Love the natural colors you use. Doing blue and tan this year for fall.

  116. This is exactly what I’ve been liking for! Now I just have to find a green house in my area!

  117. These are so stinkin cute. I’m painting these as part of my tablescapes for my sons October wedding. I bought the Annie Sloan’s paints today. First time using chalk paint so Im crossing my fingers. I did have a question regarding the sludge. It looks pretty thick and I’m wondering how you applied it to the pumpkins? Thanks.