Halloween is almost here, and that means one thing for certain: It’s time to get your pumpkins ready!
If your holiday spirit has been lagging a little this year, throw a scary movie on and gather everyone around to see what kind of spooktacular creations you can make. Whether you just want a jack-o-lantern that’s worthy of the Great Pumpkin himself or you want to find a no-cut option that’s safe for the kids, we’ve got a load of ideas you can borrow.
Ready to make a work of art out of some pumpkins? Try these ideas on for size:
🎃 Use Googly Eyes
For just a few dollars, you can pick up all kinds of “googly eyes” at your local craft store or online. Most of the eyes are peel-and-press, so put on two, three or a dozen — whatever strikes your fancy. Grab a black marker to draw a mouth, and your kids can quickly, easily and safely create a pumpkin with personality and charm.
🎃 Add Teeth
Carving the perfect smile in a jack-o-lantern can be tough, so why not eliminate the problem by giving your pumpkin some scary dentures, instead? You can pick up plastic vampire teeth at nearly any dollar store or supermarket right now, so grab a few. Just carve a space for the mouth and pop those chompers right in! Use mini-pumpkins for a look that’s somehow both scary and sweet.
🎃 Go Glittery
Do you have a little princess in your house who loves all that glitters? Indulge her favorite fantasies by decorating your pumpkin with different-colored glitter. You can brush glue over the top and sides of the pumpkin for an abstract look, or use a glue stick for a controlled approach that lets you decorate the pumpkin with more detailed designs.
🎃 Send a Message
If you want to add a creepy Halloween vibe to your front porch, let your pumpkins do the talking. Decide on a short message, like “Turn Back Now” or “Danger Ahead” and assign one word per pumpkin. You can cut the letters into the skin of your gourds or just apply them with a little glow-in-the-dark paint and a brush for a cool effect after dark.
🎃 Make Spooky Pets
With a little cardstock and some paint, you can turn your pumpkin into a homey little bat or black cat. Just paint the pumpkin black, cut out some ears, a tail, eyes and whiskers out of the cardstock and glue them on to make a cat. For the bat, you can add eyes, a pair of fangs and some fun little wings.
🎃 Host an Alien Invasion
If aliens landed this year, who would be surprised? Make otherworldly visitors feel right at home by spray-painting a larger pumpkin silver and adding antenna and landing gear out of cardstock to make it look like a UFO that’s recently landed. Pain a bunch of miniature pumpkins alien green and add three googly eyes to their faces to make them look like aliens who have just left the mothership.
🎃 Add a Helpmate
If you’re not planning on being home this Halloween but want to leave treats out for any kids who may be around, this might be the perfect solution! Carve a simple, friendly face into a large pumpkin and drill small holes all around the top. Stick lollipop in the holes as if they were curly bits of hair. Kids will enjoy the treat and you won’t have to worry about missing the night.
🎃 Use a Crayon Drip
This is one of the coolest new trends in pumpkin decorating. To get a fun, colorful, abstract piece of pumpkin art, just break up a few crayons into pieces and place the pieces (one at a time) next to the pumpkin stem. Use a hairdryer on low heat to gently melt the wax and let it drip down the sides of your gourd. (Try a white pumpkin for spectacularly vivid results.)
🎃 Make a Rainbow
Did you end up with too many pumpkins from your trip to the local pumpkin farm? It happens. Gather up those gourds, get some paint and cover each of them in different shades. Then, all you have to do is arrange them by color to get a gorgeous fall rainbow cascading down your front steps.
🎃 Mummify That Gourd
Again, this one is safe and simple to do with the kids. You need some cheesecloth, a pair of googly eyes, a black marker and some glue. Cut the cheesecloth into four-inch strips. Put a dot of glue on your pumpkin near the top and wrap a piece of cheesecloth around until you can secure the other end with another dot of glue. Keep doing it until your pumpkin is properly mummified, add the eyes so that they’re peeking out between the material and draw on a surprised mouth for loads of fun.
🎃 Mask Up
You can actually go two different routes here. First, you can pick up a fancy mask (masquerade style works best) and put them on your pumpkins so that they’re ready to go trick-or-treating. Or, you can poke fun at the stuff we’ve all endured in 2020 by putting googly eyes on the pumpkin and pinning a face mask where their nose and mouth would be if they weren’t social distancing.
Remember: ‘Tis the season to be weird, so have fun with these! Your kids are bound to be delighted, and you will make some more great memories heading into fall.