Fall Candy Dish and Indian Corn Decorations

Fall Candy Dish and Indian Corn Decorations

A corn bowl like this is something I see while thrifting quite frequently. Some of them are valuable (i.e., Corn King by Shawnee Pottery). But there are a LOT of dupes and fakers out there, which I decided were fair game for upcycling. And I had an idea to turn one into a fall candy dish that doubled as Indian Corn decorations, which would be perfect for Thanksgiving.

bowl that looks like yellow corn at a thrift store

Admittedly, this wouldn’t be a very complex project. But then again, how often to a blog about one of those?

Hey, look! Yet another corn dish that I could upcycle. I really do see these bowls and dishes at thrift stores all the time!

small dish that looks like an ear of corn

Having found TWO non-valuable corn bowls that would be perfect for repainting, I couldn’t wait to get started! Let’s just hope that my idea works out…

upcycling these corn bowls into indian corn decorations for thanksgiving

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Painting the Indian Corn Decorations

First, I needed to give the corn bowls a fresh base color that was pale and easy to work with moving forward. So, I opted for a cream-colored spray paint and set up my painting station outside.

spary painting a base coat on a corn bowl

Now, in terms of painting the bowls to look like Indian corn, I needed the right colors of craft paint. As luck would have it, Michaels had some bundles of corn in their fall decor section.

indian corn at a craft store for color inspiration

Just the kind of color-coordinating inspiration I needed! I literally put some in my cart temporarily, headed to the craft paint aisle, color matched as best I could, and returned the corn to their bin before buying my paints.

Next, and with craft paints in hand, I was ready to paint the kernels on my dishes.

paint colors that look like indian corn

I opted to paint one corn dish in this yellow and one in this wine-red shade. To do this as neatly as possible, I used a higher quality angled paint brush from the art section of Michaels.

I highly recommend this kind of brush for precision craft painting (and it’s just a few dollars per brush, not a massive investment). The angle and razor cut bristles make a HUGE difference when I’m painting something partial like this.

painting the corn bowls to look like indian corn for fall decor

Next, I painted a few individual kernels in contrasting shades to give that variegated color that Indian corn is known for. I used a combination of the two base colors I had chosen, as well as a beige and brown to get the look I was going for.

The brown paint was also used in multiple ways on a few kernels here and there. I used it straight from the bottle on a few kernels, but then progressively lightened it by mixing in a few drops of beige on my paint plate. And that worked like a charm!

making the kernals of a corn bowl look like indian corn

Once the kernels were done, I painted the husks portion of each dish in the beige shade. It wasn’t a HUGE difference from the original spray paint color, but just added a bit of depth to the husks.

Lastly, I took the painted dishes back outside and gave them a satin clear top coat to seal and protect!

spraying a clear sealant over the indian corn dishes

Fall Candy Dish and Indian Corn Decorations

See, I told you this was a ridiculously simple project! Yes, it involved several short sessions of painting, but the dishes are small and easy to paint. Definitely worth the minimal time investment, if you ask me!

decorating for thanksgiving with indian corn dishes

And yes, as mentioned before, I made sure that neither of these had the Shawnee mark underneath. In fact, there was neither a stamp nor sticker on either one.

But with a little patience and the right shades of paint, they can be transformed into the cutest Thanksgiving decorations! Whether you use one as a fall candy dish or just sitting about to set the harvest holiday mood.

fall candy dish that looks like indian corn

Either way, I just LOVE how my Indian corn decorations turned out…on my NON-COLLECTIBLE corn bowls. (Sorry, just driving that point home to keep the hate mailers at bay.)

What do you think? Might you transform a corn dish into Indian corn decor for Thanksgiving now?

painted over corn bowls that now look like indian corn decorations for thanksgiving

And, it just so happens that today is Thrift Store Decor Team Day! So, please feel free to check out what my bloggy gal pals have been up to, as well.

repurposed projects and ideas

1. Personalized Wood SledMy Uncommon Slice of Suburbia

2. Vintage Wooden Bowl Christmas Candle CenterpieceHouse of Hawthornes

3. Updated Key HolderDomestically Speaking

4. Indian Corn Decorations for ThanksgivingSadie Seasongoods

5. Snow Scene Displays in Glass ContainersPetticoat Junktion

6. Frog Tape Wooden Mini Tree PotOrganized Clutter

7. DIY White Christmas VillageOur Southern Home

8. Fun Fall Resin ProjectsShop at Blu

9. Easy Thrift Store Tray MakeoverMy Repurposed Life

I hope you enjoyed this easy and charming idea for creating some Indian corn decorations. And if you’re looking for some more Thanksgiving decor inspiration, this collection of ideas will surely spark an idea or two.

upcycling ideas with a thanksgiving aesthetic

Craft on!


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indian corn decor from vintage corn bowls

upcycling a corn bowl from the thrift store into a fall candy dish

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Sarah Ramberg is the owner of Sadie Seasongoods, a website that celebrates all things secondhand. From upcycling ideas and thrifted decor to vintage-centric travel itineraries, Sadie Seasongoods is a one-stop shop for anyone who loves thrifting and approachable repurposing ideas. Sarah is also the author of “Crafting with Flannel” and has been featured in numerous media outlets and magazines.


  1. Super cute Sarah!

  2. So cute. You have the best ideas!

  3. These turned out super cute, I’ll have to keep my out for one when I’m thrifting next time.

  4. I love this project or so many reasons! It is something so different and you just don’t see indian corn any more! What a great reminder and way to be unique! Pinned.

  5. I need to grab one of these the next time that I see it. Such a cute and whimsical upcycle to make it work in fall decor. I love how you painted the color centers to have the white creeping down into the dish. Love the interest it gives the new look!

  6. I love how you updated your corns… so fun!

  7. You are not only creative, but very patient. The indian corn dishes look really cute. Great job!

  8. I’m hoping over from The Cottage Market to let you know just how adorable these Indian corn bowls turned out! You have inspired me!!

  9. Neubauer Carla says

    You continue to amaze me!!

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