No-Carve Pumpkin Decorating Ideas

Pumpkins make a wonderful canvas for bright and beautiful designs. When designing your pumpkins let your imagination run wild. Try everything! There’s no wrong way to decorate a pumpkin. I’m sharing some of my favorite pumpkin decorating techniques, along with some of my favorite decorating art supplies. I hope you’ll find some fun Halloween inspiration.

Painting on Pumpkins

Kawaii Inspired Pumpkins

I was inspired to make fun Kawaii pumpkins after making these pen holder mason jars. I used mini orange pumpkins because I liked their shape, but it would have been easier to paint the pumpkins if I had chosen white ones. Using a primer can make it a bit easier to paint the pumpkins – this is not required but could be helpful. Because I opted to not use a primer, I had to use 3 layers of paint.

Use acrylic paints to cover your pumpkins. My favorites paints are Martha Stewart Living acrylic paints. I did the first layer with a foam brush to easily cover the surface. And for the other layers I used a regular paint brush.

painted rainbow pumpkins

Once your paint has completely dried, use a pencil to draw cute little faces on your pumpkins. For features, I would recommend using black, white, or a light pink acrylic paint.

Rainbow Pumpkins

Pumpkins are the perfect canvas for creating a rainbow color wheel. This is also a great and fun way to teach children about ROYGBIV (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet).

Step 1: Choose a mini white pumpkin

Step 2: Use acrylic paints and either a foam or regular paint brush to paint your pumpkin. You may need a couple of coats of paint. Martha Stewart Living acrylic paints are definitely my favorite paints – the colors are so bright and beautiful! You can use an acrylic sealant if you’d like- I don’t typically do this but it’s an option.

Drawing on Pumpkins

Storytelling Pumpkins

The idea for the storytelling pumpkin came about from my love of making story stones for children. This was a fun pumpkin to collaborate with my 5-year-old son, and a great way to help him with creative storytelling.

I created this whimsical-inspired pumpkin (see below) using OOLY’s chalk-o-rama chalk crayons. I love how smooth and beautiful these chalk crayons cover the pumpkins surface. Plus, they work on almost any surface, including real pumpkins!

I used a faux white pumpkin from Michaels craft store, and then with my chalk-o-rama chalk crayons I covered the surface of the pumpkin.

Doodle Pumpkins

It’s hard to go wrong with a doodle pumpkin. Your doodles don’t have to be complicated. They can simply be straight lines and it will still turn out beautifully.

If you’re crafting with children and want to keep the mess to a minimum, I recommend using OOLY’s chunkies paint sticks. I then paired those with rainbow sparkle watercolor gel crayons (from OOLY) on a faux white pumpkin, and wow was the end result beautiful!

Polka Dot Pumpkins

Another great decorating option, and to give your pumpkin a fun 3D textured look, use OOLY’s neon & pearlescent dot-a-lot dot paints.

polkaadot pumpkins

First paint the pumpkins black using lil’ poster paint pods from OOLY. Be sure to give them plenty of time to dry.

Next, you can start decorating the pumpkins as you like. Use the dot-a-lot dot paints to make different size dots, or you can use it as a thicker paint.

Embellishing Pumpkins

Glitter Pumpkins

“When in doubt, add more glitter!” If you want something that is eye-catching and will make people smile, just add glitter to your pumpkin.

glitter pumpkin

Step 1: Cover your pumpkin in Mod Podge with a foam brush.

Step 2: Place a paper underneath your pumpkin and pour glitter over it. My favorite glitter is Recollections Extra fine glitter. Use one color at a time and return the remaining glitter into the container.

Step 3: Let your pumpkin dry completely. If you like, add an additional coat of Mod Podge over the dried glitter. I didn’t add this layer, and my glitter still stayed on without shedding.

Melted Crayon Pumpkins

Making a melted crayon pumpkin is a fun and unique project to do with kids.

First, unwrap your crayons and cut them in half

Next, use tacky glue or another glue that is quick drying – glue about 16-20 crayon pieces around the pumpkin

Lastly, once the glue has dried use a hair dryer to melt the crayons. I recommend using a tarp underneath the pumpkin, covered in garbage bags.