Making a Halloween Jack-o-Lantern from a Paper Plate Holder

Making a Halloween Jack-o-Lantern from a Paper Plate Holder

On a recent trip to Goodwill, I noticed one paper plate holder after another. You know the kind I’m talking about? The wicker paper plate holders that were once found in nearly every kitchen. Well, apparently they’re all getting donated to the thrift store! I knew I needed to come up with an upcycling idea for them, and a Halloween jack-o-lantern seemed like a good place to start.

Paper plate holders at thrift store for upcycling into Halloween jack o lantern

Growing up, I ate meals at plenty of homes that had these on hand. Designed to support a standard paper plate, they were a 1970s-1980s staple…but ironically, I don’t think we had them in our house! Either way, it was obvious to me that people were cleaning out their cupboards and adding these old wicker paper plate holders to their donation piles.

They were begging to be repurposed and a Halloween wreath DIY was my plan!This post contains affiliate links for your crafting convenience. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Upcycling a Paper Plate Holder into a Halloween Jack-o-Lantern

To begin this super simple Halloween craft project, I used Krylon’s pumpkin orange spray paint on a paper plate holder.

Now the paper plate holder was the perfect pumpkin orange color for a Halloween jack-o-lantern.

Paper plate holder that is painted orange for a Halloween wreath DIY

Once the paint dried, I grabbed some scraps of felt from my stash- a mottled green for the stem, and black for the jack-o-lantern face. I didn’t bother using any templates and just cut out them out, free hand.

I also grabbed some fabric glue to attach my felt pieces to the paper plate holder. Your hot glue gun would also work just fine for this!

Making a jack o lantern face with felt to use as Halloween wreath DIY on a wicker plate holder

And just like that, I had an adorable jack-o-lantern to use as a Halloween wreath DIY! What a fun way to repurpose a paper plate holder!

Halloween jack o lantern by upcycling a wicker plate holder or paper plate holder

The paper plate holder still needed a few more embellishments, so I purchased some artificial greenery. I wanted him to have that “just picked from the pumpkin patch” look, and these would work perfectly.

And yes, I realize the leaf shape is more oak-y than squash-y, but I loved the autumn colors and the hints of shimmery gold. I already had some curly-q dried grasses on hand that I had used in my summer jars, so I spray painted them green and added them to the mix.

Greenery from the craft store to go on a Halloween wreath DIY from a wicker plate holder

Finally, after picking out the leaves and stems to use, I glued them to the back of the paper plate holder!

Halloween Wreath / Jack-o-Lantern from a Paper Plate Holder

When all was said and done, I had a charming little Halloween wreath. Thanks to the open weave of the paper plate holder, I was able to slide a piece of thread through the back (behind the stem) and tie off a little loop- perfect for hanging on a door!

Halloween jack o lantern and Halloween wreath DIY from a paper plate holder by Sadie Seasongoods

Maybe not quite as cute as the vintage cardboard decorations my mom would use around the house all those years ago, but still very cute. Especially for the price AND for the simplicity of the Halloween craft project!

Wicker plate holder from the thrift store that is now a Halloween jack o lantern for the door

Now I really want to make more projects with these wicker holders to use during different times of year…hmmm…what would you suggest?

If you enjoyed this upcycling idea for Halloween decor, then you’ll love this ghost light idea. They take just a few minutes to make!

Ghost light for light up Halloween decorations by upcycling the glass light covers with white glowsticks by Sadie Seasongoods

And for another Halloween basket idea, check out this Halloween candy bowl idea – also from the thrift store!

Halloween basket and Halloween candy dish by upcycling a wicker basket into a jack o lantern pumpkin by Sadie Seasongoods

Craft on!


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  1. You go Girl ! This is adorable and thrifty decoration. Hugs

  2. This is great! I see these at thrift stores everywhere, heck, I even inherited a stack in the second house I bought. Perfect reuse. Love the felt touches and I think the maple leaves look just fine. I grow a lot of pumpkins and squash and they look pretty close.

  3. chris aka monkey says

    as usual cute cute and a santa face would be awesome too xx

  4. That is just adorable! Pinning this one to my Pumpkin Everything board!

  5. Adorable – you come up with the greatest ideas Sarah!

  6. OMG, SO CUTE!!! :o]


  7. Great idea. I love this cute pumkin.

  8. Too cute !!!

  9. What a cute idea and so easy too. Thanks for sharing your tutorial at Vintage Inspiration Party.

  10. Sadie, your genius strikes again! Yes I see these all the time at thrift stores too, and I know now what’s going on our front door and the front gate for Halloween! Love, Mimi xxx

  11. What a cute and easy project! I love this. Thanks for sharing at Inspiration Thursday!

  12. So cute! We had ’em too! And I used them as a young married!
    Here from Grandma Ideas.

  13. Hi Sarah,
    Thanks so much for joining and sharing this really cute pumpkin craft at Cooking and Crafting with J & J.
    We hope to see you again.
    I am now following you also besides IG on Bloglovin, Pinterest, and Twitter.
    Thanks and enjoy the week.
    Julie xo

  14. This is the cutest pumpkin ever!!! Love it!

  15. You are so creative! I would have never thought to do this. Would love if you shared this on the Spooktacular Link Party.

  16. this is such a fun, cute and simple idea for Halloween! thanks for sharing 🙂

    stop by and chat with me ♥

  17. This is SUPER adorable!

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J! Please don’t forget to enter the $25 Starbucks Giftcard Giveaway that ends tomorrow night!

  18. Adorable!!! So clever.
    Hope you share with us at the Creative Craft Challenge this month 🙂

  19. That is so clever.

  20. Such a cute re-use idea! Thanks for sharing!

  21. Love this…I would suggest making a snow man

  22. Adorable! I love this project! Pinned it

  23. Hi Sarah, your plate holders caught my eye at Julie’s Link Party. What a clever idea. Pinning. Thanks for sharing. Best wishes, Darlene

  24. Sarah, thanks for sharing this one at Five Star Frugal. I hope your cute ideas get lots of attention from friends over there. Love, Mimi xxx

  25. Hi Sarah, These are absolutely adorable! Love your diy. Thanks for sharing at the Inspiration Spotlight Party. Pinned & shared.

  26. Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co. says

    Super cute and a great project to do with the kids! Featured at Be Inspired this morning. Thanks so much for sharing!

  27. Sherry Fisher says

    is perfect for our daycare Halloween craft!! Thank you! 🎃🎃🎃

  28. Love this idea!!! Simple, easy and oh so cute!

  29. I love this! So cute and creative!

  30. Again, I love your eye for seeing creative designs. My parents definitely had plastic versions on these when I was growing up because they bought really thin paper plates. So cute! I have a question – how do you take your photographs, for example, the ones with the white backgrounds? Thanks! Also – thank you for linking up at Welcome Home Wednesday!

    • Hey, Brittany- I bought a large white vinyl backdrop that I set up in front of my kitchen bay window. I don’t use any artificial light, but I still get shadows since the light only comes in from the right. But that white vinyl makes a world of difference- bought it on Etsy!

  31. Very cute!! We use these and bought them at Walmart which sells them each summer. The thin paper plates are easily biodegradable, and have no plastic coating, so I’d rather use those for pizza night.

  32. I’m making a bunch to put over my archway! Love it!

  33. This is so cute and creative! Great job!

  34. Such a cute and easy DIY!! Really love it 🙂 Thanks a lot for joining us at the Family Joy blog link up party. Pinned your post to our Pinterest party board 🙂

  35. What a great craft project, that would perfect for outdoor Halloween decorating too! Thanks for joining us each week at the DI & DI Link Party 🙂

  36. Your ideas are so cute and so simple – You see things in the mundane that others just don’t see. Thanks for sharing on the Pleasures of the NW’s DIY party-

  37. A great price and a simple project are a crafting match made in heaven!

  38. Cute idea! Pinned and shared.

  39. Oh gosh I remember those wicker plate 😉 I love this project… what an adorable way to reuse the crazy plates!! Thanks you so much for linking this up to our Inspiration Galore Project Party last week… you are one of my Features tomorrow over at Pinned and shared. Happy Halloween!

  40. Tooo cute Sarah, love it!!! We still have a whole bunch of these in our cupboard, it’s time they got an overhaul me thinks 😉

  41. Sarah, what a cleaver idea. I have a bunch of those basket plate holders laying around. Share you for sharing at Your Inspired Design.

  42. Very cute idea and looks pretty easy. My favorite kind of project. Thank you for sharing at Vintage Charm.

  43. Definitely cute and I love a re-purpose project!! Thanks for linking up at Shabbilicious Friday.

  44. OHHH, I wish I had seen this before I went to the thrift store today! That’s so cute!


    Simply adorable – I have those old paper plate holders and will make these!

  46. Gayle Rusbasan says

    Loved this! or leave the face off and it’s a fall decoration. I found one plate holder that is already orange!


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