There's no trick to whipping up a few mini pumpkin penny rugs for your friends this fall. All you need is a little wool and thread, and you're set for the season!
Download this Project

Designer: Debbie Busby


  • 16×20" piece black felted wool (appliqué foundation and backing)
  • 7×8" piece orange felted wool (pumpkin and circle appliqués)
  • 5" square dark green felted wool (leaf appliqués)
  • 2×16" piece light green felted wool (vine and circle appliqués)
  • 2×3" piece brown felted wool (stem appliqué)
  • No. 12 perle cotton: black
  • Freezer paper

Finished penny rug: 7-1⁄2×8-1⁄2"

Cut Fabrics

Cut pieces in the following order. Click on "Download this Project" above for pattern pieces.

To felt wool, machine-wash it in a hot-water-wash, cool-rinse cycle with a small amount of detergent; machine-dry it on high heat and steam-press.

To use freezer paper for cutting appliqué shapes, complete these steps.

1.  Lay the freezer paper, shiny side down, over patterns. Trace each pattern the number of times indicated in cutting instructions, leaving 1⁄2" between tracings. Cut out freezer-paper shapes about 1⁄4" from drawn lines.

2. Using a hot, dry iron, press freezer-paper shapes, shiny sides down, onto the right side of designated fabrics; let cool. Cut out fabric shapes on drawn lines. Peel off freezer paper.

From black wool, cut:

  • 2 of Pattern A

From orange wool, cut:

  • 1 of Pattern B
  • 11 of Pattern C

From dark green wool, cut:

  • 1 of Pattern D
  • 1 of Pattern E

From light green wool, cut:

  • 1⁄4×16" strip
  • 11 of Pattern F

From brown wool, cut:

  • 1 of Pattern G

Appliqué the Penny Rug

1. Referring to the Appliqué Placement Diagram, position the brown G stem and the orange B pumpkin and C circles on the black A foundation; baste. Using black perle cotton, tack-stitch pieces in place.


To tack-stitch, pull your needle up at A (see Tack Stitch Diagram) and push it down at B. Come up at C, go down at D, and continue in this manner around the entire shape.


2. Using black perle cotton, make three lines of running stitches through the pumpkin (see photo). To make a running stitch, pull your needle up at A (see Running Stitch Diagram) and insert it back into the fabric at B, 1⁄8" away from A. Pull your needle up at C, 1⁄8" away from B, and continue in the same manner.


3.  Pin the light green 1⁄4×16" vine strip on the  pumpkin. Then position the dark green D and E leaves on the pumpkin; baste. Tack-stitch the vine and leaves in place using black perle cotton and working from the bottom layer up.

4. Lay the light green F circles on the orange C circles. Using black perle cotton, secure each F circle in place with a French knot. To make a French knot, pull the thread through at the point where the knot is desired (A on French Knot Diagram). Wrap the thread around your needle twice without twisting it. Insert the tip of your needle into the fabric at B, 1⁄16" away from A. Gently push the wraps down the needle to meet the fabric. Pull your needle and trailing thread through the fabric slowly and smoothly.


Finish Penny Rug

1.  Layer the appliquéd black A piece with the unappliquéd black A piece with wrong sides together. Using black perle cotton, blanket-stitch around the pieces to complete the penny rug. To blanket-stitch, pull your needle up at A (see Blanket Stitch Diagram), form a reverse L shape with the thread, and hold the angle of the L shape in place with your thumb. Push your needle down at B and come up at C to secure the stitch.