Corn Cob Skewers (they are much thicker and shorter than normal skewers)
Hot glue gun and glue
Dyed rice and beans in your choice of colors
Glass vases or mason jars
1. Beginning about 3 inches from the pointy tip of the skewer, hot glue the end of your twine to the skewer. Wind the twine around the skewer, pulling tightly, until you wrap the entire thing. Hot glue the other end of the twine to the end of the skewer.
2. With your pumpkin upside down, start a hole in the center of the pumpkin bottom with a small knife. You don't have to cut too deeply. Stick the pointy end of your skewer into the hole and push the skewer into the pumpkin up to where the twine begins.
3. Know you'll dye your rice/beans. Rice dyes much more completely than beans do. I did not dye the brown beans (obviously). I used boiling water, vinegar and food coloring. Once your beans and rice are dry, you can continue.
4. Pour some rice and beans into the vase/jar, almost to the top.
5. Stick your pumpkin skewer into the beans and rice, as deeply as it will go while still leaving enough of the skewer exposed to see the twine.
6. Pour some more rice and beans in the vase and push them up around the skewer.
Last year, our kids' table was covered with craft paper. Each kid had their own plastic cup of crayons. The Mini Pumpkin Topiary in the center was in a 1/2 pint mason jar. (get it? Half-pint?!? Ha! Just kidding. That was totally not my intention...)
I don't have a tutorial for it (unfortunately, but I made the table runner at the last minute as well. And I kind of love it! I had this awesome fabric on hand that I assumed was burlap when I first snagged it at the thrift store... but when I began using it I realized it was a very rough upholstery/carpet type fabric. It was heavy duty and it did not fray. AWESOME. I sewed three skinny pieces together and then ruffled some orange burlap strips and sewed them along the runner at equal intervals. Easy.
How much do you love our super awesomely awesome china? More like Chinette... but very little clean up afterwards, and that was very cool!