COLUMN: Creative ways to carve pumpkins
Carving pumpkins is one of my favorite fall activities.
You get to spend the day at the cider mill picking one out, carve it, light it up as a Jack-o-lantern and then roast up tasty pumpkin seeds.
The process itself is a timeless tradition, but this year, I’ve discovered a few new ways to make a pumpkin stand out, rather than just giving it a toothy grin.
The first idea is to paint your pumpkin. While this certainly has been done before, the twist comes with using chalkboard paint. You can purchase chalkboard paint at most craft stores, and it even comes in a variety of colors. I would personally stick with black to fit in with the spooky Halloween theme.
Once your chalkboard pumpkin is ready, unleash your creativity. Count down the days until Halloween, write out spooky sayings, or write out party rules on them for your holiday bash.
Next, try wrapping your pumpkins in tights. Smaller pumpkins are going to be better here; I wouldn’t advise trying to shove a 15-pound pumpkin into a pair of fishnets.
Using patterned, lacey tights can give your pumpkin an antique look, and the black on orange is a festive color combination. Tie off the tights at the top of the pumpkin by the stem. You may even be able to make a pom-pom or bow at the top. If it doesn’t look so great, then just tie a large ribbon at the top to cover it up.
If carving is the way you’d like to go, try using metal cookie cutters. Plastic ones might work too, but metal is going to be more durable. Pound the cookie cutters into your gutted pumpkin with a rubber mallet, a hammer… even a sturdy shoe might work. You can purchase all sorts of Halloween-themed cookie cutters, so the possibilities are endless.
For the last few ideas, try using accessories with your pumpkins.
Carve out slots on small pumpkins and give them a pair of plastic vampire teeth.
Badazzle your pumpkin with cheap jewels from a craft store, or washers from a hardware store for a more discoball look.
If you’re planning on passing out candy, poke holes in a carved pumpkin with a pen or screwdriver and then insert suckers into the holes. You can even make a game out of it: Any trick-or-treater who pulls out a marked sucker stick wins a prize.
Getting crafty with pumpkins is one of my favorite holiday activities. Unfortunately, some people’s favorite activity is smashing pumpkins. So make sure if you put a lot of time and effort into your pumpkin, don’t leave it out overnight to get smeared across your sidewalk.
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