How to Make an Image Transfer Pumpkin

This old-school image transfer technique gives pumpkins an imperfect, antiqued look that is just the thing to dress up your porch, mantel or indoor Halloween display.

October 06, 2021

Materials Needed

  • white foam pumpkin
  • printed black and white images
  • matte decoupage glue
  • scissors or a craft knife
  • foam brush
  • sponge
  • bowl for water or spray bottle
  • paper towels
  • clear acrylic seal spray (optional)

Print Out Images

First things first, find a good collection of Halloween-themed imagery and print it out. Black-and-white imagery tends to work best with this technique. And while any printer works, a laser printer will work best.

In recent years, "royalty-free images" have become pretty abundant on the internet. These are images that you can use without having to worry about paying fees. Tip: If any of your imagery has words, you'll need to reflect the image before printing it out. If the word reads backward on paper, it will read correctly when transferred.

Cut Out Images

Next, use scissors to cut out the images. When cutting, get as close to the black lines as possible.

Glue

Using your foam brush, cover the printed surface with decoupage glue (Image 1). Then, place the image face/glue side down on your pumpkin. Be aware that if you have two pieces of paper overlapping, only the bottom image will show up. Let dry for one hour (Image 2).

Apply Water

Use a damp sponge or spray bottle full of water to soak a small area of paper (Image 1). Gently begin to rub away the paper with your finger (Image 2). You'll notice the black image has transferred to the pumpkin. This may take a few moments so be sure to keep the area damp. Repeat on small areas until as much white has been removed as possible.

Keep the pumpkin clean during this process by working in small areas, changing out the water in which you're dipping your sponge and wiping off excess paper pulp. This is key to the best-looking finished product. If you aren't sure how you did, check your pumpkin an hour or two after you finish. If you're still seeing a lot of excess white, repeat this step.

Seal It

If you plan on keeping your decoupaged foam pumpkin for next year, spray it with a clear acrylic sealer to protect the transferred images.

More No-Carve Pumpkin Ideas to Try

Next Up

How to Make a Gumball Machine Pumpkin

With a little patience (and a whole lot of gumballs), you can create a one-of-a-kind decor piece that trick-or-treaters will flock to this Halloween.

12 Best Pumpkin Carving Kits and Tools

Get in the Halloween spirit with these top-rated pumpkin carving kits for kids, adults and aspiring artists.

Grandin Road's Wicked New Halloween Line Will Seriously Delight You

The haunting decor is absolutely goal-worthy, from front porch essentials to festive serveware.

27 Outdoor Halloween Decorations to Create the Creepiest Yard on the Block

Bring the holiday fun to your porch with these chic and festive outdoor Halloween decorations.

DIY Teal Pumpkins Three Ways

Make sure no child, even those with food allergies, is left out of trick-or-treating by displaying one of these three DIY teal pumpkins that let everyone know that you have non-food treats available.

How to DIY a Hanging Bat Planter for Halloween

Get creepy-crafty to give your houseplants a haunted home for Halloween.

The 30 Best Halloween Costumes for Kids

Trick or treat! We've got the cutest and coolest costumes lined up for your kids this Halloween.

15 Too-Cute Halloween Costume Ideas for Dogs

Your fur baby shouldn't be left out of the Halloween fun! We tracked down some seriously adorable costumes that'll be perfect for your pup.

20 Adorable Halloween Costume Ideas for Babies and Toddlers

You're never too young to get in on the Halloween fun (or to have your parents do it for you). We've found darling ideas for our little ones of all ages, from newborns to toddlers.

Go Shopping

Refresh your home with stylish products handpicked by HGTV editors.

On TV

Inside Out

7am | 6c

Inside Out

8am | 7c

Inside Out

9am | 8c

Inside Out

10am | 9c

Inside Out

11am | 10c

Inside Out

12pm | 11c

Home Town

1pm | 12c

Home Town

2pm | 1c

Home Town

3pm | 2c

Home Town

4pm | 3c

Home Town

5pm | 4c

Home Town

6pm | 5c

Home Town

7pm | 6c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Outgrown

8pm | 7c

Outgrown

2:59am | 1:59c

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.

Related Pages