plastic pumpkin painted to look real
Image/Media Source:fall home decor to avoid using real pumpkins. Real pumpkins like other plants eventually rot and mold when they’re removed from their vines and source of nutrition.

While you can keep a real pumpkin looking fresh with some tricks and tips, at the end of the day, those pumpkins are only going to last for so long. Instead, to keep your pumpkins looking beautiful all throughout the season, you’ll want to use artificial, plastic pumpkins to decorate you home with instead.

Of course, many argue that plastic pumpkins look very fake and, as a result, a bit tacky. This can be especially true if you are going for a more natural, rustic look with your fall decor theme.

However, this is a problem that can easily be fixed with a little DIY craftiness. Whether you’re a serial DIY-er or you’ve never visited a craft store in your life, this project is incredibly easy to carry out and pretty much foolproof.

You also don’t need a ton of tools or materials to carry out this project. If you already own a plastic pumpkin, then you’re well on your way to completing this project with little money spent.

To make plastic pumpkins look real, all you need is a little bit of antiquing gel, also known as antiquing paint. This product can be found in the acrylic paint section of your craft store.

The particular variation of this product that you’re going to use for this project is called “burnt umber.” This shade lends a realistic, weathered look to the pumpkin that will completely transform the pumpkin from looking artificial to entirely realistic.

For this project, you will need: 

  • Plastic pumpkin
  • Antiquing gel/paint in “burnt umber”
  • Paint brush
  • Paper plate
  • Water
  • Paper towel


  1. Pour some of the antiquing paint onto your paper plate with a splash of water. Mix the two together.
  2. Use the paint brush to apply some of the paint to one section of your plastic pumpkin.
  3. Grab a dry paper towel and use it to gently rub up and down over the area of applied paint. This will remove the paint, but leave some residue in the crevices of the plastic pumpkin.
  4. Repeat the steps above, working your way around the entire pumpkin. Let the pumpkin dry before decorating your home with it.

DIY idea from