With autumn comes the tradition of decorating both the interior and exterior of homes with pumpkins. Of course there are other elements, but pumpkins are preferred. The tradition of decorating our homes with pumpkins is due in part to its versatility.
In addition, they are not only used for autumn decoration but are also present in the Thanksgiving tradition. Pumpkins have been around for a long time. So, let’s know a little about its history and some curiosities. In the same way, we will show you beautiful ideas for you to use in decorating your home.
Technically, yes, pumpkins are a fruit, although there are many people who refer to it as a vegetable. The word pumpkin comes from the Greek pepon, which means big melon. This word traveled through French to England, where it became pumpion before the name squash finally emerged in the American colonies.
The Tradition of Decorating with Pumpkins in Fall
Most varieties of pumpkin are believed to be native to North America. there is evidence of its existence in Mexico, which dates back to at least 5,500 BC. In fact, pumpkins may have been one of the first domesticated crops.
Pumpkins are even said to have been grown before corn and beans. Sure, there are also species of gourds that were discovered to have grown in Asia and Africa. So it is assured that pumpkins were used in almost all cultures in the world.
Today, the cultivation of pumpkins has spread throughout the world, except in Antarctica. In 2012, the largest pumpkin producers were China and India. These countries produced a total of 10.5 million metric tons of the fruit and the United States produces 778,000 tons.
Pumpkins are more than a fruit
It should be mentioned that some pumpkins are not edible. But this certainly does not limit its use in various ways. Its thick skin has easily made it a tool throughout history. Perhaps its most popular use is as a container for water.
When opened and emptied, the pumpkins can double as ready-to-use containers. Pumpkins were also used to make musical instruments in different cultures. For example, Africans used gourds to make percussion instruments.
The Mexicans used them to make maracas and the Indians used them to make zither. However, today, although they can be used for different crafts, they have been left to the tradition of decorating in the fall season, Halloween and Thanksgiving.
The beginning of the tradition
When Europeans arrived in the New World, they found pumpkin growing everywhere. These became a great source of nutrition for the settlers. So it can be said that European immigrants established the beginnings of attachment to pumpkins.
It is said that they were the ones who created the first pumpkin pie, cleaning the interior and baking with milk, honey and spices. And thanks to tradition, pumpkins became a very popular fall food. On the other hand, in Ireland, during the 19th century, they had many myths about spirits guarding them.
They were actually quite superstitious. During the harvest season, the Irish had a great celebration known as Samhain. During the Samhain festival, local villagers lit large bonfires while feasting and celebrating.
They believed that, during Samhain, the veil between the world of the living and the world of the dead was lifted, and the spirits of the dead could be freely among the living. Due to their great superstition, they feared that some evil spirits might come.
So they decided to take all the precautions they could think of to avoid any terrifying encounter with evil spirits. They used disguises to appear dead so they would not be disturbed by the spirits that roamed the place.
Pumpkins and Halloween
Another of their ideas with which they wanted to distance or perhaps represent these spirits, was taking the fruits they grew and carving them with horrible illuminated faces. But at first it was not the pumpkin but the turnip. Turnip lanterns were the forerunners of the pumpkin lanterns we know today.
Obviously the tradition jumped to North America which was where pumpkins were used for this purpose. The switch from turnips to squash turned out to be much better. Since the thick skin of the fruit was perfect for carving the hideous faces. They generally did this around the time the dead were rising from their graves.
When Irish immigrants came to America, they brought the lantern tradition with them. But turnips were rare in America, but there was something even better to use in their traditional lanterns to ward off evil spirits, the pumpkin.
This curiously turned out to be close to Christianity’s All Saints’ Day. But in the end it turned out to be recognized by all as Halloween and pumpkins being the official symbol of this. So thanks to its popularity as a fall food, Halloween decor, and Thanksgiving link, pumpkins are and will continue to be present throughout the season’s festivities.
Well, there is no fall season or Halloween, much less Thanksgiving without the presence of pumpkins. In addition to the many recipes with pumpkins, the tradition of decorating with this fruit stands out even more. There are endless ideas to decorate in the fall with pumpkins.
Pumpkins and Thanksgiving
Regarding the Thanksgiving holiday, most stories say that this began with the celebration of the harvest of the Pilgrims and Native Americans in the fall of 1621. But, although this celebration as the first Thanksgiving lasted three days, there is not enough evidence that this led to the holiday as it is known today.
However, Thanksgiving Day dates back to 1863 when President Lincoln became the first president to proclaim Thanksgiving. So the holiday has been an event at the end of November.
As we already mentioned, the pumpkins are said to have been and were part of the meal to celebrate this meeting. But today, in addition to making delicious and wonderful dishes with this fruit, more than anything else it is used for decoration. And that is why decorations for Thanksgiving are also made with pumpkins.
So, find a bunch of pumpkins of all sizes and colors and start decorating your home. It not only works for interior decoration. But they also look really beautiful as part of outdoor décor. You can decorate your dining table, your living room.
Pumpkins can decorate any space
They are also great for decorating your kitchen, your entryway, and your backyard. You can decorate them with paint, glitter, letters, and even make your own pumpkin lantern. In the same way you can combine them with different elements also typical of autumn such as pine cones.
You can also make a decorating project by combining them with ears of wheat and even fruit. Pumpkins also make beautiful vases or vases. Try not to focus only on the orange pumpkins. There are other colors and you can even paint them to give more drama and adjust them much more with the decoration you have.
If you are one of those people who love crafts, you can also make fabric pumpkins. These are really as beautiful as the natural ones. Place them on your table or make a nice wreath for your door or for a wall in your living room or dining room.
Outdoor fall decorations can remain on display from early fall through Halloween. Add to the natural beauty of your backyard an elegant pumpkin decoration. Brighten up your fall pumpkin display by making them shine in a unique way.
Glue the stems of the pumpkins together with painter’s tape. Paint the pumpkins black and let it dry. Now place a crow template on a pumpkin and trace it with a white pencil. Paint the crow with gold paint. You can combine this pumpkin with others decorated with feather motifs to make them match.
There are those who even use the scrap hardware, such as drawer pulls, faucet handles, and more, and personalize their pumpkins. Another great and original idea to decorate the entrance of your home by making a hand-painted autumn rug to welcome home.
Pumpkins for Fall, Halloween, and Thanksgiving Decorations
For such a DIY project, you’ll need pumpkin and leaf stencils. Simply trace your favorite fall patterns and tape them onto a plain coconut fiber doormat. Once you have your patterns fixed on the mat, use a foam brush to apply paint over the design.
Once the paint on your carpet is dry, place it in the entrance and add your pumpkins as part of the entrance decoration. A terrarium looks great both indoors and outdoors. With a glass bell and shallow terracotta bulb dish, you can easily create a fall-inspired terrarium.
It is beautiful and perfect to highlight the natural elements that you like the most. For this project, it’s best to start your fall piece with moss, little pumpkin decorations, and bright leaves. Filling a simple wicker basket with your different colored fall squash is also great for interior and exterior decorating.
This project can be placed on your front door, on your porch, in your backyard, or simply used as a bountiful fall piece in any space within your home. In the same way, you can easily transform your pumpkins into candle holders.
Only by cutting the top and hollowing out the centers will you have your cute and eye-catching chandeliers. You can combine them with other natural autumn elements. Place everything on a tray and you will also have a beautiful centerpiece for your dining room or living room. You could even place it on a small table in your garden.