Pins and Yarn Pumpkins

Halloween is so highly anticipated in our household. The costumes, the crisp fall air, and...the pumpkin decorating! This year, I wanted to try something a little different. I was inspired

by a combination of materials and activities I've seen in preschool

classrooms. We pulled together pushpins, yarn, scissors and, of course,


Materials you'll need

Step-by-step tutorial

  • Step 1

    "Sharp pushpins for kids?!" you might ask incredulously. I asked the same thing when my daughter, who was 3 at the time, would come home from preschool with outlines dotted with pinholes. The teachers assured me that the kids did really well with them and developed their fine motor skills. I was sold (though I did watch carefully over the kiddos to make sure things were going safely and all pins were accounted for).

    Photo reference of how to complete step 1

  • Step 2

    As for the combination of pins and yarn, I thought we could recreate geoboards on our pumpkins. Have you seen these? The combination of nails in boards along with rubber bands is geometric magic. Perhaps the kiddos could wrap yarn around their pushpins to create new patterns and shapes? So, we set up all of the materials, and off we went. My three-year-old began making a line of eyes, which evolved into a 100 eye pumpkin. Good thing we had a lot of pushpins!

    Photo reference of how to complete step 2

  • Step 3

    Then, some yarn was weaved amongst the pushpins. I helped start and stop the yarn by simply wrapping it around the pin and pushing the pushpin all the way. (Frankly, he would have been completely happy with pushpins alone.)

    Photo reference of how to complete step 3

  • Step 4

    My five-year-old created a little girl pumpkin with a flower in her hair.

    Photo reference of how to complete step 4

  • Step 5

    On the back of her pumpkin, she made a heart and then weaved the yarn between the pushpins.

    Photo reference of how to complete step 5

  • Step 6

    They were thrilled with their creations, and they're asking for more pumpkins to decorate!

    Photo reference of how to complete step 6

  • Done!

    Meanwhile, I had to try the technique myself. Here's my attempt at a spider web. Ooh--hexagon in the middle!

    Photo reference of how to complete step 7

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