Today’s DIY combines a few of my favorite things: pumpkins, paper, Halloween, and a good story!
While at the bookstore a few weeks back, I came across a children’s story about a young witch who, more than anything else, wants to fly. Written by Alison McGhee and illustrated by Taeeun Yoo, Only a Witch Can Fly, is a story about bravery, growing up, and following your dreams. It’s a sweet, inspiring story and perfect for this time of year.
While it’s always hard to cut up a book, I couldn’t resist Yoo’s beautiful illustrations. I wanted to create something where I could enjoy the illustrations and story by making them a part of my surroundings. I’ve always loved dioramas and so the idea was born to make a pumpkin diorama using scenes and characters from the book. Thankfully, it only took one copy to make this project and I’ve kept the other one to remember and enjoy the story.
DIY Halloween pumpkin diorama
I recommend setting aside approximately two (2) hours to complete this project.
- Craft foam pumpkin
- Paperback copy of Only A Witch Can Fly by Alison McGhee
- Twinkle silver lights (optional)
- Cardboard scraps
- Black electrical tape
- Hot glue sticks
- Black acrylic paint
- X-acto knife
- Hot glue gun
- White pencil
- Sand paper or Dremel with sanding bit
- Foam brush
With a white pencil, make an outline of a circle on the front of your pumpkin. I made my circle about 5 1/2 inches in diameter.
Using an X-acto knife, cut out the circle. Use sandpaper or a Dremel sanding bit to smooth out the edges.
Paint the interior of the pumpkin with black acrylic paint.
Using an X-acto knife cut out a large background, characters and added details. I chose to go with the young witch, her brother, pumpkins, bats and a house. Personalize it to what you like best.
Cut small square pieces from scrap cardboard. Make sure they are small enough to be attached to the back of your paper pieces without showing.
Create a sense of depth by using one to three stacked cardboard squares. This will have the pieces appear at different depths in the diorama. Play around with it on a flat surface until you have a composition you like.
Glue the cardboard pieces to the backs of your pieces.
Attach the background to a large but flexible cardstock. Trim it down as needed to fit the interior of your pumpkin. Position it inside the pumpkin about 2 1/2″ from the opening. Make sure it’s secure and won’t move. If you feel it will, you can secure it in place by gluing cardboard braces behind it on the inner walls of the pumpkin.
Place and glue your cut paper pieces to the background.
For an added touch, drill a whole in the bottom of the pumpkin and thread lights around the interior of the pumpkin. Secure them in place with black electrical tape.
Soar! You’ve just made a Halloween pumpkin diorama!