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  • Jack-O’-Lantern Halloween Decoration Ideas: Part 1

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    If you are looking for jack-o'-lantern Halloween decoration ideas, there are many options other than the carved pumpkin most people immediately think of. To be sure, a carved pumpkin is still the mainstay, but it can be augmented by or even supplemented with other similarly themed embellishments both inside and outside the home. This article will examine lighted jack-o'-lanterns Halloween decoration ideas found in three books that will give you a broader picture to draw inspiration from.


    Starting with the obvious lighted jack-o'-lantern Halloween decoration ideas can include the carved pumpkin. You can use either a real pumpkin or an artificial carvable pumpkin. To start your pumpkin carving project, draw the face either on paper and transfer the design to the pumpkin or do your initial drawing on the pumpkin if you feel confident in your artistic skills.


    Use simple designs, since they will be easier to cut when carving the pumpkin. There are also commercially produced jack-o'-lantern patterns available at most drug stores and discount department stores in the weeks leading up to Halloween. Many designs can also be found at many free clip-arts sites on the web.


    As an alternative to pumpkins, gourds make wonderful lanterns. They come in such unusual and natural shapes that when lit, they look splendid. The skin is tougher though, so you will need to make random holes to create a face or interesting designs. (Brokaw & Gilbar, 12)


    The Penny Whistle Halloween Book offers an entire section on jack-o'-lantern Halloween decoration ideas. One suggestion is to use a cluster of pumpkins for better effect. You can either carve all the pumpkins on intermix carved and uncarved pumpkins.


    The latter approach lends itself to creating an Autumn Halloween decoration in which the carved pumpkins can be removed after Halloween, leaving the uncarved pumpkins as accents marking the Autumn harvest season. Also, use a combination of various pumpkins sizes.


    If you are wanting a lighted jack-o'-lantern Halloween decoration, besides using a lighted carved pumpkin, consider luminaria and lanterns. Luminaria are easy to create and can be projects that kids can participate in. Mary Engelbreit's Autumn Craft Book gives an abridged set of instructions for creating luminaria from poster board. The project photo features a black cat and crescent moon with a orange tissue background.


    The other lighted jack-o'-lantern Halloween decoration idea is a lantern. A beautifully crafted mosaic pumpkin lantern is displayed in the project picture for the project presented in Hocus Pocus! Halloween Crafts For a Spooktacular Holiday. The text gives a complete materials list and detailed instructions for producing one yourself. There are also four jack-o'-lantern patterns provided for photocopying, one for each of the lanterns.


    The materials list calls for gold stained glass for the facial features, but in the project photo, the facial features are nearly indistinguishable. If you attempt this project, you may want to go with yellow stained glass or even clear glass for the facial features.


    Another possibility for a lighted jack-o'-lantern Halloween decoration idea is a painted lantern. Instructions for creating painted lanterns is also provided in Hocus Pocus! Halloween Crafts For A Spooktacular Holiday. The presented project involves creating witch and bat lanterns.


    But by substituting designs and color-outlined in the materials list, you can easily adapt the procedure to creating jack-o'-lantern themed painted lanterns. In fact, just using a jack-o'-lantern design in place of the bat design is all that is really necessary since the bat lantern uses a gradated orange and yellow background.


    These are just a few lighted jack-o'-lantern Halloween decoration ideas you can use to get started. All of these projects are relatively simple and lend themselves to familial activities. More ideas are presented in Jack-O'-Lantern Halloween Decoration Ideas: Part 2 and Jack-O'-Lantern Halloween Decoration Ideas Part 3 which cover home accents and food service, respectively.

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