Traditional Pumpkin Carving Techniques
By Colleen Dorsey
Here they are, the very essentials of pumpkin carving! By following these steps that you probably had down pay when you were a kid, you can get carving with any traditional pumpkin carving pattern. You’ll need a little elbow grease and a tolerance for mess to use this technique, but it’s totally worth it.
1.Clean the Pumpkin
Prep the pumpkin first by rinsing it in cold water and using a scrub brush to remove dirt. If you want, you can spray the entire pumpkin with a mild bleach and water solution to kill mold and bacteria.
2.Cut out the Lid
Use a sturdy knife to slowly and carefully carve out and remove the lid of the pumpkin, going in at an angle rather than straight down in. Alternatively, you can cut a hole in the bottom of the pumpkin, which will mean you can sit your pumpkin on top of a light rather than placing a light inside the pumpkin.
3.Clean Out the Guts
Use a scoop to completely empty the inside of the pumpkin of flesh and seeds. Keep scraping away at the inner walls of the pumpkin until you only have about a 1” (2.5cm) thick pumpkin wall that is nice and smooth.
4.Attach the Pattern
Transfer the pattern using your desired method. Check out Easy Pumpkin Carving for tons of patterns to choose from.
Keep your carved pumpkin cool and out of the direct sunlight (you can even put it in the fridge). You can also coat the interior and all cut edges with petroleum jelly to help lock in the pumpkin’s natural moisture, or purchase special preservative sprays for pumpkins.
Colleen Dorsey is a writer specializing in the craft and hobby industry, and an editor at Design Originals and Fox Chapel Publishing. Colleen has edited books on many topics, including foam and paper crafts, jewelry making, and children's crafts. She graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a degree in creative writing, and in her spare time she enjoys writing fiction, making jewelry, and upcycling findings into crafty new items.