Braided Cord Pumpkin Tutorial
Updated: Dec 4, 2020
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I have been seeing this style of pumpkin around this year and I thought it would be fun to try to make my own version. These fluffy top braided macrame pumpkins came out so cute and I am so excited to add these to my fall decor around the house. Here is a tutorial for how to make your own braided pumpkins.
3mm macrame cord (See on Amazon)
Hot glue gun / glue sticks
Pumpkin base (See the tutorial here)
To start this braided pumpkin tutorial, you will need to have a starter base to attach the braids to. You can use a foam ball or any other kind of base you would like. I used a recycled base made from newspaper and a plastic grocery bag. (See my quick tutorial)
For the cord, I used a 3mm macrame cord. I love this one from Amazon in the natural color but they also have a lot of other beautiful fall colors like deep green, wine red and a golden yellow.
I also love that you get a giant 220 yard spool for a good price.
Once you have the base, it’s time to get started with the braids. Because every base will vary depending on the size you are making, the way to measure is to take a piece of the cord and wrap it loosely around the base once. You want to have about 2.5 inches above the top of the base as this will allow a little shrinkage from the braiding process and this will also become the fluffy top. Cut and then measure your length so you know what length the remaining cords will need to be cut at. I used 16 inch length cords in this tutorial.
I went ahead and cut all of my cords into groups of three for a total of 20 braids (60 cords). Again, this will vary depending on the size you are doing so if you don’t want to precut too many, you can also make the braids as you go.
To braid the cords, you will need three of your cords and a clipboard. Place the cords next to each other with about an inch or so extra above the clip. These are just standard braids, the same you would do for a basic hair braid.
Take the third cord and place it over the center cord. Then take the first cord and place it over the now middle cord. Repeat this process until the whole length is braided. The tricky part here is if you are making a bunch of these ahead of time before gluing, they will try to come unraveled unless you stick the ends under something somewhat heavy to hold them until you are ready to use them. I used a nearby paintbrush to do the job! You just want to keep the ends in place until you glue them, you could also use small rubber bands.
Whether you are making the braids as you go or you have pre-made a bunch of them, next you will want to start attaching the braids to your base. Take a braid and place it snugly around your base. You want this to be snug so it doesn’t come loose later. You should have a few inches of extra cord above the top of the pumpkin base leftover for making the fluffy top later. Carefully glue to the stem and allow any extra braid to unravel. (You do not want to glue the entire cord to the pumpkin because we will need the space underneath to tuck smaller ends in later - only glue the cord at the top at the stem for now.)
Repeat this process for the next cord, crossing it over the bottom of the first cord. Continue to add more braids and gluing each to the top the same way as the first and criss crossing the cords on the bottom.
Eventually you will only have smaller gaps left. Fill these in by taking one of your braids and tucking it under the top of the gap. You can dab a bit of glue to tack it into place as needed. Then cut to size and tuck and glue the other end. When I reached this point, I glued the entire length of the short cords to hold them in place. You will need to make sure the cords are laying snugly next to each other so that no base is showing through. I gently lifted some of the already in place cords and added a bit of glue to keep them in place but this is not really necessary unless you have small bits of the base showing through or you just want a little extra security.
When all of the base is covered, it’s time to finish up the top. Take a braid and wrap it tightly around where the bottom of the loose fringe starts. Glue as you go around to hold it in place and when you are finished cut the excess length to match. Unravel any excess to blend with the rest of the fringe. Make sure there are no more braids or cord pieces left that have not been unraveled. Fluff up the fringe and cut any extra long pieces to the desired length.
There you have it, fluffy top braided pumpkins! I think these turned out so cute and they would be fun to try in some of the other nice fall colors available. I hope you have some inspiration for your own braided pumpkins, good luck and happy decorating!
For more fabric pumpkin tutorials see →