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  • Decorate A Pumpkin For Halloween: Alternatives to Jack-O’-Lanterns

    Pumpkin Carving Kit - Professional Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Tools Set for Halloween (4 Pieces with Storage Carrying Case)
    Pumpkin Carving Kit - Professional Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Tools Set for Halloween (4 Pieces with Storage Carrying Case)
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    Halloween Pumpkin Carving Tools,Elmchee Halloween Jack-O-Lanterns 13 Piece Professional pumpkin cutting supplies tools Kit stainless steel lengthening and thickening
    Halloween Pumpkin Carving Tools,Elmchee Halloween Jack-O-Lanterns 13 Piece Professional pumpkin cutting supplies tools Kit stainless steel lengthening and thickening
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    VIVREAL Halloween Pumpkin Carving Kit, 12 Pieces Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Carving Tools Set for Halloween Decoration, Easily Sculpting Jack-O-Lanter
    VIVREAL Halloween Pumpkin Carving Kit, 12 Pieces Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Carving Tools Set for Halloween Decoration, Easily Sculpting Jack-O-Lanter
    Sale Price: $13.99


    If you want to decorate a pumpkin for Halloween but are bored with the same old jack-o'-lantern face, there are options that you can explore. You can make choices that still include carving or you can decorate the pumpkin in ways that do not involve cutting and carving. When you are ready to decorate a pumpkin for Halloween, consider these ideas.


    One way to decorate a pumpkin for Halloween is to make a vase. Cut off the top either straight across or with a more ornate design. Hollow out the pumpkin, fill it with water, and add flowers. Another option is to fill the hollowed out pumpkin with dried flowers and branches of leaves, skipping the need for water. You can enhance the looks of the pumpkin vase by cutting out designs in the sides, such as hearts or diamonds.


    You can also decorate a pumpkin for Halloween by simply carving out a design. But instead of carving out the design once, repeat the design around the entire pumpkin. One simple way to do this is with a cookie cutter pattern. Just press the cookie cutter up against the pumpkin and trace it with a felt-tip pen or marker. Try to space the designs evenly for a clean look and choose a simple design that will be easy to carve.


    If you intend to decorate a pumpkin for Halloween by carving out designs, here is a tip. Make the cuts at an angle so the inside skin of the pumpkin is visible. Just that alone will enhance the look. But for extra appeal, paint each cut out with tempera, using either the same color or a different color for each one. Then light the pumpkin with a candle or flashlight from the inside. Or place light sticks inside for a colored glow.


    Another way to decorate a pumpkin for Halloween that has been hollowed out is to make it into a centerpiece. Once the pumpkin is hollowed out, line the inside with foil or plastic wrap. Then fill the pumpkin with miniature wrapped gifts. Tie each wrapped gift with ribbon. Make sure the ribbon ends are long enough to cascade out of the pumpkin and onto the table. Halloween themed wrapping paper and ribbon can be found at party stores at Halloween time.


    Decorate a pumpkin for Halloween by creating a diorama. Instead of cutting the top of the pumpkin, carve out a jagged edge square in the side and hollow it out. Then use the hollowed out pumpkin to create a scene. You can use miniature Halloween toys, doll, animals and so forth placed inside the pumpkin to create the scene. Cut a small hole in the back and use a small flashlight for lighting.


    Creating luminaria is another way to decorate a pumpkin for Halloween. Buy a dozen or so medium sized pumpkins. Carve out a shape such as a diamond, heart, rectangle on four sides and hollow out the inside. Finally, place a candle, small flashlight, or light stick inside. If you intend to use candles and you live in an area that tends to get breezy, you may want to carve out designs only on two sides. Use the luminaries to line your walkway and use them in strategic locations in backyard party areas.


    As we have seen, to decorate a pumpkin for Halloween does not have to be limited to carving out a soulless, toothless jack-o'-lantern face. You can break from the common and create a delightful holiday decoration that still conveys the Halloween spirit. In some cases, you can create a dual-function Autumn Halloween decoration that can be kept around through Thanksgiving. Find more ideas in the books listed in the sources section below.


    Adopted from The Penny Whistle Halloween Book, by Meredith Brokaw and Annie Gilbar (Fireside).

    Additional Resources:

    1. ---.50 Boo-Tiful Full-Size Halloween Patterns And 100 Tricks For Using Them. Better Homes & Gardens, 2002.
    2. ---.Hocus Pocus! Halloween Crafts For A Spooktacular Holiday. Martingale & Company, 2003.
    3. Lyons, Charlotte. Mary Engelbreit's Autumn Craft Book. Andrews and McMeel, 1996.
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