60 Easy, Cool and Scary DIY Pumpkin Carving Ideas for Halloween 2018

Nicole and Bianca CuteDIYprojects Blogger

One of the most beloved Halloween traditions is the carving of pumpkins to create jack-o-lanterns. These luminous decorations can be spooky or cheerful, taking their inspiration from a wide variety of sources. Whether you want one round jack-o-lantern with triangle eyes and a jagged mouth or five jack-o-lanterns of varying shapes and sizes, pumpkin carving is a fun family activity that leads to the creation of an iconic piece of Halloween decor. Check out the best pumpkin carving ideas for Halloween 2018!

49 Easy, Cool and Scary DIY Pumpkin Carving Ideas for Halloween 2015

Last updated: 16-09-2017

How to crave a pumpkin?

To create a jack-o-lantern, select a pumpkin and a design. You may use a stencil, copy a pattern or draw something from scratch on a blank piece of paper. Wash the outside of the pumpkin and lay down newspapers on a flat surface, preferably outside. Put a garbage can next to you for the excess; if you like, you can also have a bowl to place the pumpkin’s innards in so that you can sort out the pumpkin seeds and bake them for a tasty fall treat. With a sturdy knife, cut around the stem of the pumpkin. Make the hole large enough that your whole hand can easily fit inside. Lift out the stem and, using a knife or spoon, scrape the innards off the bottom. Stick in your hand and remove as much of the pulp as you can, then use a spoon to scrape the insides clean. Next, draw or trace your design on the pumpkin with a permanent marker. Use a small knife to cut as indicated by the lines and, if desired, scrape certain areas for a shaded effect. Dispose of the extra pieces and place a candle inside, lighting it before replacing the top. One beautiful jack-o-lantern, ready to go! For more ideas to get you started, check out the list below.

1. Drilled Pumpkin Vases

Drilled Pumpkin Vases

One of the loveliest homemade Halloween decorations that you can make is a drilled jack-o-lantern that doubles as a vase. This project is fairly involved, but the results are beautiful. Using a drill with bits of varying sizes, drill a pattern into your pumpkin. Use tape and markers to help you plan out your pattern. Drill holes in the removable top so you can place individual flowers in each hole, and put a jar of water inside the pumpkin for the flowers. Scatter at least half a dozen glow sticks around the inside of the pumpkin and replace the lid for a vibrant decoration.

Project Source: craftynest

2. Disney Pumpkin Carving Templates

Disney Pumpkin Carving Templates

Even if you don’t think of yourself as artistic, there are tools available to help you make wonderfully cool Halloween decorations. If your kids are Disney fans, they’ll love the many templates the company has to offer, such as this Snow White design. Print out the pattern and tape it to the front of the pumpkin. Use a tack or pushpin to make tiny holes all around the lines on the pattern, then remove the paper. Use the pin-prick holes as a guide for where to cut, and refer to the pattern if needed. The resulting Disney design is a dream come true!

Project Source: family.disney

3. Lacy Pumpkins Carving Idea

Lacy Pumpkins

Some Halloween ideas veer toward the elegant, such as this suggestion from Martha Stewart. To add a touch of class to your DIY Halloween decorations, take some inspiration from the 1700s with these luminaries. Select pumpkins with white or pale skin and choose carving tools with distinctive blades that will make free-hand carving simple even if you don’t know how to carve a pumpkin. Cut a circle out of the bottom and empty out the innards. Place tape around the middle of the pumpkin as a guide, then make small cuts in a regular pattern around the pumpkin. Work upward and downward until you are satisfied with the lacy effect.

Project Source: marthastewart

4. Tinkerbell Magical Fairy Dust Pumpkin

Tinkerbell Magical Fairy Dust Pumpkin

For these pumpkin carvings, start with an artificial pumpkin of any size. Find a silhouette of Tinkerbell online and print it out. As with the Snow White pattern above, tape the picture to the pumpkin and use a pushpin to make tiny holes all around the outer edge. Use a hot knife to carve out Tinkerbell and a drill with bits of varying sizes to surround her with tiny holes in a swirling pattern. Toss in a small light bulb and dim the lights to bask in the pixie dust’s magical glow.

Project Source: instructables

5. How to Pick a Pumpkin and Pattern

How to Pick a Pumpkin and Pattern

You’ve got the basics down above, but here are some more tips. For instance, be very selective about the pumpkins you choose. Don’t pick one that is too lumpy or ridged; the smoother the pumpkin, the easier it is to use your design. Additionally, beware of dry, brown stems, fungus or soft spots. The older the pumpkin, the sooner it will go bad. As far as patterns go, you can buy a kit that includes both pumpkin carving tools and fun pumpkin carving patterns. Otherwise, look online for inspiration or do a specific search for a particular type of pattern. Free printable patterns abound.

Project Source: instructables

6. Pumpkin Design Tips for Halloween

Pumpkin Design Tips

Here are some more general tips, this time on how to go about creating a brand-new design for your pumpkin. By creating your image from scratch, you increase the likelihood of impressing others with the uniqueness of your design. If you are using established characters, print out pictures from the Internet to use as a reference. Remember that you are dealing with silhouettes, so stick with fairly simple designs and watch out for “islands” – parts of the design that would disappear on an actual pumpkin because they would be surrounded by empty space. Get creative, and who knows? You could even win a pumpkin carving contest!

Project Source: instructables

7. Skull in a Pumpkin Carving Idea

Skull in a Pumpkin

Looking for scary pumpkin carving patterns? The skull in a pumpkin doesn’t take a lot of know-how. Start by carving a large hole in the front of a pumpkin. Hollow it out as usual but don’t get rid of the guts. Drill holes in the eyes of a plastic anatomical skull and string LED lights through it from behind, then place clear marbles in the front of the eye sockets, securing them with hot glue. Place the skull inside the pumpkin and surround it with the remaining pumpkin guts for a truly eerie effect.

Project Source: instructables

8. Oddly Shaped Pumpkin

Oddly Shaped Pumpkin

Who said pumpkin carving faces have to look human? Keep an eye out for oddly shaped pumpkins that could be morphed into strange creatures. Look at the pumpkin and imagine what kind of creature it resembles. Instead of simply carving a jack-o-lantern, you could turn the whole pumpkin into a sculpture of sorts. Follow the contours of the pumpkin, carving away most of the outer skin to create an original work of art that makes use of the pumpkin’s own natural shading. Whether your lumpy pumpkin becomes a cozy cat or a fearsome dragon, you’ll want to show it off.

Project Source: instructables

9. Winnie the Pooh Template

Winnie the Pooh Template

Are your kids fans of the Silly Old Bear? Even if they aren’t, young trick-or-treaters are sure to delight when they see Winnie the Pooh smiling at them from the pumpkin on your porch. This template works the same way as the Snow White one above. Print it off, tape it to the pumpkin and stick a pin all along the outline. Remove the paper to find an outline of tiny holes. As always, while young kids can do the pinning, adults should do the carving on this honey of a pumpkin.

Project Source: family.disney

10. Mickey Mouse Template

Mickey Mouse Template

As popular as Winnie the Pooh is, Mickey remains the most iconic of Disney’s characters. Therefore, if you’re looking for child-friendly pumpkin faces to carve, his is a natural choice. Follow the same instructions as Winnie the Pooh. You could even do both and make a game of it by putting each parent with a child. The kids can do all the steps up through carving, then the parents can take over. No matter which team finishes first, everybody’s a winner because you’ll end up with two cheerful jack-o-lanterns to decorate your home.

Project Source: family.disney

11. Moon and Stars Pumpkin Tutorial with Carving and Lighting Techniques

Moon and Stars Pumpkin Tutorial with Carving and Lighting Techniques

Why go for the traditional idea of pumpkin carving and design a Jack O’Lantern just like every other year when you can bring out a gorgeous twist to the same. Taking you to a whole new land of dreams, this carving tutorial guides you through creating bright and shining stars surrounding a magically glowing moon, all set in a pitch black background. Lots of glitter and sparkle in shades of golden, blue and silver come into play to bring out stunning starlight using wax paper and alcohol ink.

DIY Details : pluckingdaisies

12. Halloween Basics: 4 Ways to Carve a Pumpkin

Halloween Basics: 4 Ways to Carve a Pumpkin

This year, carve four different pumpkin designs, including a mustache, a jack o’lantern, a BOO! and a spooky kitty lit up from the insides that look oh so wonderful for a perfect Halloween celebration when placed along the front door pathway. All you need is your carving knives and scooping tools, a marker, a cutting mat, an xacto knife, some rubbing alcohol, and of course some pretty big pumpkins. What’s great about the tutorial is that it makes the whole process of complicated carvings much easier for you by including free printables.

DIY Details : brit

13. Happy Whale Pumpkin Carving

Happy Whale Pumpkin Carving

Letting your creative juices flow over a tall pumpkin with a knife and a peeler can transform it into a super adorable whale, resting on top of a huge tray all covered with lots of Halloween candy. While the bottom third of the vegetable works as the tale of your happy whale, the stem turned upside down plays the role of a spout. And the main section has got a huge smile, along with two little eyes that have been carved out with utmost simplicity. A piece worth decorating the dinner table!

DIY Details : womansday

14. How To Carve a Pumpkin With a Hot Knife

How To Carve a Pumpkin With a Hot Knife

Let a bright orange pumpkin disguise as your name plate this Halloween, sitting with all grace right at your doorstep – all glowing with some tea-lights or little candles. Punching your house number with a needle on the pumpkin, and further, carving the pattern using a hot knife is the key. To pull off the carving you will need a foam pumpkin, a hot knife, a computer printout of your address numbers in the font and size that you like, a sharp needle, and a tape.

DIY Details : inmyownstyle

15. Raccoon Pumpkin Stencil

Raccoon Pumpkin Stencil

A furry, cheerful raccoon welcoming all your trick-or-treat guests with its utterly winsome expressions and beautifully achieved, intricate details is all you need to make your Halloween much more memorable. However, working the design out might seem to be a a troublesome affair that can be put together only by those who are a connoisseur at vegetable carving. Comes to your rescue is this incredible Raccoon Stencil provided by BHG in a downloadable format, accompanied by quick steps that explains the entire carving process.

DIY Details : bhg

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