This Dallas Mom’s ‘Porch Pumpkins’ Design Company Has Spruced Up Over 250 Homes This Season
For seven years, Heather Torres and her family lived across from the Dallas Arboretum. Every fall, the mother of three spent countless afternoons at home with her children, admiring the seasonal exhibitions. Torres’ husband and father-in-law, who own and run a manufacturing company, then sourced Heather pumpkins, gourds, corn, and more to create her own pumpkin display on her porch.
“My neighbors and friends would love to take part, but it wasn’t profitable for us,” says Torres.
This year Torres’ children are all in school and she has had time. The couple decided to take the plunge and start a business.
“We thought this was the perfect year for this,” said Torres. “Many people [aren’t comfortable doing fall activities, like] go to pumpkin beds or the state fair. [With these displays, they can] Bring the celebrations home. “
Torres initially offered her services in her family’s new neighborhood in the Rockwall area, where she moved in January. “[All the owners here] have fun decorating, ”says Torres. “Everyone makes Christmas lights, but not everyone has an arboretum-like display on their front stairs. We know how much work it takes to get these pumpkins together, and we have realized that this is something people want. “
Decorate your porch like a pro
Layering: Torres uses hay bales to add height under their piles of pumpkins. Use your front steps to get the same effect.
Texture: Add dried corn stalks to break up the gourd shapes and don’t be afraid to choose thin gourds, bumpy gourd, or any other unusual product to add visual interest.
Colour: Choose a variety of pumpkin colors like green, yellow, and white to highlight the more traditional orange varieties.
Focus: Familiarize yourself with a favorite feature, whether it’s decorative pillars, front stairs, or the path to your door. Make your display there with pumpkins to draw attention to the focal point.
Colour: Can’t find the white Cinderella pumpkins Torres used? Do you lean towards a bolder look, with blushing or even black pumpkins? Paint your own.
In late September, Torres created a Porch Pumpkins business logo and flyer, and then planned their package options. The company’s services start at $ 250 for a drop of 30 brightly colored pumpkins on the porch. Their largest, full-service design package costs $ 1,000 and includes 75 pound pumpkins, decorative corn, hay bales, and more. Torres took photos of each package and used her own and a friend’s porch to model them. She went to Instagram and Facebook to explain the concept. The next day her phone rang.
“In our first two business days, I was the only one who delivered, so it was a maximum of six (deliveries),” she says. “I wrote my personal phone number on these leaflets – I thought [our reach] would be a circle away from people I knew “She was driving down I-30 to make a delivery when style blogger Amy Havins, also known as @dallaswardrobe, republished her flyer. “My phone exploded for five minutes,” says Torres. “After that, I no longer had a personal connection with 90 percent of our customers. And from there it started. “
Torres hired a second designer to assist with displays when the business was booming. Although their team’s designs are cohesive, no two porches are ever identical. The pumpkins should be “meaningful, not spread out,” she says, “and while we went for the same look every time, there are pumpkins of different shapes, sizes and colors … for example, our white Cinderella pumpkins got smaller as time went on . … It was really fun using what God gave us. “
Torres takes into account the architecture of each home before launching an ad. “Some houses have spacious verandas. Others have three or four narrow steps. Or there will be double doors that we want to emphasize. It doesn’t matter if the house is modern, contemporary, classic or rural – if you look at all of these styles and add pumpkins, they are [showcase] the uniqueness of this house. “
In just three weeks, Porch Pumpkins served over 250 customers in Dallas, Fort Worth, Rockwall, Frisco and beyond, with an average of 12 to 15 deliveries per day.
After a hurricane in the first season, Torres stopped deliveries on Tuesday. She and her husband then flew to the Riviera Maya to celebrate 10 years of marriage.
“I always enjoy immersing myself in business ideas,” she says, “and I really enjoyed it. But I love that I can do that four weeks a year and be with my family the rest of the time. “
Torres has no plans for Christmas-themed packages at this time, but keep an eye on @porchpumpkins’ Instagram account just in case. Her followers will also get their first dibs on their packages next fall if she plans to add a “Pumpkins and Mothers” service, a rainbow-painted pumpkin package, and more.
Would you like to try making your own porch display? Check out our pumpkin patch guide here, then scroll through the gallery below for some inspiration from Torres’ designs.