pumpkin carving with stencils

You can’t have Halloween without the pumpkin carving, right?

You can find some great Printable Halloween Stencils here. This makes it easy because you can just print it out and start creating your pumpkin masterpiece.

When you think about Halloween crafts this is the one that gets the whole family involved. And why shouldn’t it. It’s a long time tradition that is carried on from generation to generation. If you are looking for the how to of pumpkin carving, you’ve come to the right spot. And this article tells you how to use a stencil so that you can be much more creative with your pumpkin’s design. You’ll be the envy of the neighborhood.

First check out the Jack-O-Lantern Stencils for the toothy grins that are some familiar.

Then, don't get to frightened that you can't go to Scary Pumpkin Stencils.

And most of all, if you want to cross a black cat then you have to go to Cat Stencils for Pumpkin Carving where you'll find the pattern for like the one above.

Using Pumpkin Stencils

To carve your stencil into a pumpkin, follow these instructions:

Here are a few of the items that you’ll need: A Stencil Pattern, Scissors, Tape, A Carving Saw, A Transfer Tool, A Large Spoon or Scoop (You may be able to find the last three tools mentioned in a kit)

Allow the pumpkin to sit for a while at room temperature. Draw an outline of a six-sided lid on top of the pumpkin that will be large enough for you to clean out the inside and place a candle. Use a carving saw and cut along the outline with the blade at an angle towards the center of the pumpkin in order to create a ledge to support the lid.

Use a large spoon to clean out the seeds and pulp. Scrape the pulp in the area you plan to carve until the wall is no more then 1 inch thick. If you were able to find the pumpkin carving kit at your local store there is most likely a small plastic scoop enclosed. I would recommend using a larger metal spoon if you have one. The seeds and the pulp inside a pumpkin can be a lot for that little plastic spoon to handle.

Marking Your Stencil Design

Trim the excess paper from your stencil with scissors making sure to leave at least a ½ inch border on all sides for the tape. Line up the pattern and tape both sides of the stencil, top and bottom. To tape the corners, you may need to crease the stencil. Depending on the roundness of the pumpkin, this may distort your design so try to make the creases where the pattern will be the least distorted.

Use the Transfer Tool to make holes along the lines of the design at about 1/8 inch apart. Complex designs might require the holes to be closer together. The tip of the tool should be pushed in just far enough to penetrate the paper stencil and the outer skin of the pumpkin. Don’t push so hard that the tool goes through the wall of the pumpkin. Make sure that all the lines have been marked clearly before removing the pattern. If you need help seeing the holes once the pattern is removed, rub flour into them. They’ll turn white.

More than Just a Jack-O-Lantern

Cradle the pumpkin in your lap and use the Carving Saw to cut out the design by connecting the dots. Hold the saw like a pencil and cut with a continuous up-and-down motion, keeping the saw perpendicular to the pumpkin. Only use gentle pressure to avoid stressing and breaking the tool or the pumpkin. It’s best to start in the center of the design and work your way out. You may need to rotate the pumpkin in your lap to keep the side that you are cutting closer to your hand. To cut sharp corners, remove the saw blade and re-insert it at the new angle. Use your finger to push the cut pieces out from the inside of the pumpkin. Cut large areas into smaller ones for easier removal.

One last thing to do! If you want to put a candle inside the pumpkin you need a chimney in order to allow the heat to escape. When all the carving is done and the inside is clean, smooth and free of loose pulp, place the candle inside and carefully light it. Put the lid in place and let the candle burn for just a couple of minutes. Once the candle smoke has blackened a spot on the lid or top, use the Carving Saw to cut a 1 inch diameter hole at that spot for a chimney.

Unique Pumpkin Decorating Ideas

Oh yeah! Coating the cut edges with petroleum jelly will reduce shriveling and extend the life of your pumpkin. Also, you can bake the seeds in the oven with salt for a tasty snack.

Here’s what the Witch in Moonlight looks like when finished and lit up. Hope you enjoyed the information you found here.

Happy Halloween and Happy Stenciling,