Monday, October 1, 2012

My Fall Hemp Gourd

Out of failures, surprises come forth! The following is a revamp of what I wrote earlier, so please forgive me if you took the time to read this post before. I think the tutorial is worth going over again. Many useful items can be made out of this application. Just use your imagination.

I needed to add a few pictures of failure to succeed.  It all started with wanting to make one more item for my fall decor (if that's possible), I mean one more item?  Really, I wanted to make one of those grapevine pumpkins (with lights) only I would TRY to make it out of hemp.

It just wasn't in the cards for me to succeed.  

First off,  I needed a balloon or ball, glue and hemp to make this work.  I couldn't find a round ball to buy that was reasonably priced, so I opted for a large balloon. Cheap, right?    Well, usually when you blow up a balloon it's either oval or round in shape. Who would have thought I ended up with an elongated neck balloon.  Who sells those anyway?  Party City that's who!  Now, I'm stuck with this shape so I go on hoping I can make it work.

Next, my plan was to devise a method of putting glue (actually,modge podge) in a bowl and pulling the hemp through the modge podge and carefully wrapping the balloon with the glue soaked hemp.

Balloon is in the sink ready to be wrapped.

Unfortunately, it didn't work out that way.  The glue soaked hemp was very slippery against the balloon.  I had a time trying to wrap the balloon.  I couldn't take pictures because glue was everywhere - what a mess!  I had to tie the beginning end of the hemp around the mouth of the balloon closure. Still, at first, I couldn't get a tight enough wrap. Finally, positioning the balloon sideways, I was able to get a better grip.  I concluded that this is a two person task. Whew!

 My plan of pulling the hemp through the glue didn't work either. Ever so often, I would unwrap small amounts of hemp into the bowl of glue, saturating the hemp before wrapping.  I couldn't put too much hemp in the bowl because it would get tangled.  I ran out of hemp (I got it from my husband's work bench) before I finished. In the end there were a lot of open areas I would have liked to cover, but I wasn't in the mood to go out and buy any more hemp so I just carried on with the project.

In hopes of making the "pumpkin" stronger, I took a sponge brush and saturated the balloon completely with the glue.

                  Then I hung it in the garage overnight.

The next day, the hemp was completely dry and hard so I popped the balloon.  I was able to remove most of the remnants of the balloon, but you could see a film of glue throughout the openings. It was relatively easy to remove but very time consuming.

 OK, I know you must be laughing by now -  and saying, "that doesn't look like a pumpkin. Ha, ha, ha!"  You would be absolutely correct!
                                            It's a GOURD, 

and some gourds are really funny looking, like this one.

                                            Anyway, I tried!

 But, then I decided to add some decorative leaves to the gourd and this is how it looks now .  .  .

 Not too shabby.   I think I might add some lights after all! 

Happy Crafting and




  1. Actually, I'm liking it! I haven't done this, but I heard that if you put a layer of vasoline it helps with the slipping. Not sure if it works, but its something to consider.

  2. I'm liking it too! I'm intrigued by the whole process and may give it a try!

  3. No kidding, even your so called "fails" turn out great. Nobody has a gourd like that and it looks amazing! Have a wonderful vacation.


  4. I agree with all the other comments. It's a gourd and it looks great!

  5. I'm digging this idea, maybe not pumpkin but you can really do something with this..very cool.
    ♥ ur fan.

  6. I'm loving it ... nice job. Sometimes 'failures' look better that the 'perfect' one. I just made one ... a "failure" out of a palm fond and have thoughts on how to improve it, but may not look better than the 'failure'.
    Audrey Z.
    Timeless Treasures


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