Pumpkin Crafts // How to Make Copper Leaf Pumpkins

I love to make copper leaf pumpkins. Can I just say this is one of my absolute favorite pumpkin crafts DIY’s ever? 

There is something almost magical about copper mixed together with fall colors and these copper leaf pumpkins are so easy to make. Ready to learn how to make one of my favorite pumpkin crafts?

copper pumpkins

I have always loved crafts that include gold, copper, or silver leaf. For years I noticed projects where these super-thin sheets of metal have been added to mirrors, frames, and even furniture. For a long time I imagined myself doing this and ending up with sheets of gold leaf stuck everywhere but on my project. Fortunately, I have worked with metal leaf quite a bit in the last few years and I have it all figured out!

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My Favorite Pumpkin Crafts

Can I just say this is one of my absolute favorite pumpkin craft DIY’s ever? 

copper pumpkins

I assumed the copper leaf would be expensive. But I found imitation rose gold sheets for crafting on Amazon and purchased 100 sheets for under nine dollars! I was able to finish all three of these pumpkins using less than half of these sheets. The color is perfect as rose gold and copper appear to be the same!

How to Make Copper Leaf Pumpkins

What You Need for Pumpkin Crafts // Copper Leaf Pumpkins

One package of Imitation Leaf Gold Rose for Gilding for Crafting (you can also use silver or gold)

Faux pumpkins in assorted sizes

Mona Lisa two ounce Metal Leaf Adhesive

Mona Lisa water-based sealer

Rubber gloves

Assorted paint brushes

I thought about using real pumpkins but decided I didn’t want to go to the trouble of making these copper leaf pumpkins if they weren’t going to last.

Making copper leaf pumpkin crafts

The metal leaf comes in a stack and you can see here how thin it really is! You want to wear gloves so you don’t leave fingerprints or stick to the metal. It is much easier to handle with gloves.

When you handle the leaf, be sure to use the paper inserts so it doesn’t tear. (And if it does tear don’t worry. You will use plenty of small pieces and you have plenty!)

DIY copper leaf pumpkin crafts

Step One – Apply Adhesive

Use a paintbrush to thinly cover the pumpkins with the adhesive. Be sure to place your pumpkins on a plastic-type surface that won’t stick to the pumpkin. Try to cover all surfaces of the pumpkin with adhesive.

DIY copper leaf pumpkins

Let the adhesive dry for twenty minutes.

Fall copper leaf pumpkin crafts

Step Two – Apply the Copper Leaf

Gently lay a piece of the copper metal leaf on the pumpkin. Continue to cover with as many sheets as necessary. Don’t worry about spots that are missed as you will come back and add more copper later. 

Fall metallic pumpkin crafts

Gently press down on the copper sheets to adhere the metal to the adhesive. I used my fingers (with gloves) and a dry brush to do this.

Fall metallic pumpkin crafts

Continue to lay sheets down on any spots that need covering. Don’t hesitate to pull on the sheet and use the leftover metal for another area.

Fall pumpkin crafts

Step Three – Covering the Entire Pumpkin

Once you have covered as much area as possible use your dry brush to gently remove any excess copper. As you discover small areas that aren’t covered, continue to add more copper. This is the step that surprised me the most. I could add the tiniest scrap of the copper to the pumpkin and it would cover it. And it didn’t leave visible seams or edges.

This is when I realized I love this process!

Easy pumpkin crafts

At this point, you will discover some areas that need more glue. Gently reapply the glue to the non-adhesive areas and wait twenty minutes.

Easy copper leaf pumpkin crafts

This was the perfect opportunity for me to start on my next pumpkin. Can I just say at this point I was hooked on pumpkin crafts!

Easy metallic pumpkin crafts

My second pumpkin was a lot easier. I had figured out that I didn’t have to be exact and covering a smaller area was a lot simpler to do.

How to make metallic pumpkin crafts

Step Four – Applying the Sealer

Can you believe how these turned out? This is the step where you want to lightly brush on a water-based sealer.  My shipment was delayed so I will be doing that later today.

How to make fall pumpkin crafts

This morning I walked into the kitchen just to make sure my new copper pumpkins looked as good in the light as they did last night. And then my sweet husband said, “Last night I wasn’t sure what you were doing, but today these look great”. 

I am still blown away by how easy and inexpensive these pumpkins were to make. I love them and am already thinking of ways to do this again for the Christmas holiday.

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Copper Leaf Pumpkins

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47 Comments

  1. Looks so pretty when finished but what a mess! How long did it take to make one of the pumpkins and what was the average cost?

  2. Would I be able to do this on a cardboard/craft paper type pumpkin? I had bought those at Target and would love to try this on them. Thanks!

  3. Hi Leslie. I love this process and looks very doable. I was just curious. I have one of those cheap styrofoam orange ugly dollar store pumpkins. Will it work on that or should we just stick with the wooden that you used? Thank you 🙂

  4. Thank you for sharing these beautiful pumpkins. I love the copper and it’s so pretty for fall arrangements. Jean

  5. Wow, these are gorgeous with a capital G!
    I’m going to give it a try. Where did you find your pumpkins? I like the idea of wooden ones, but difficult to find any. Definitely looks great with the three sizes. Thank you for this article! And how great are the IOD ladies?! That’s how I found you. 🙂

  6. I love the gold leaf and was thinking about using it on a paper mache deer. Do you think the paper mache would hold up to the adhesive or would it get soggy?

    1. Hi Marsha! So you’ll need to apply both adhesive and sealant but there’s not a lot of guidance for use on paper mache. If the items are important to you, I would hold off! 🙏

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