No Halloween celebration is complete without some amazing pumpkin carving and Jack-o’-Lanterns ready to greet trick-or-treaters and party guests. From glamorous witches and spooky Medusas to beaded globes and tin men, these pumpkin carving ideas will take your Halloween decoration game to another level. And no need to worry about being an expert with a carving knife or spending too much money on decorations, because these designs are as easy as carving holes into your pumpkin or decorating them with wheat. Let your imagination run free by decorating them with plant wigs and pieces of cloth after carving out their adorable faces.
So, whether you’re a pro or a first-time carver, scroll through these fun pumpkin carving ideas for some major inspiration. They are built to make you, your family, and your guests smile!
And if you really don’t want to be cleaning out goopy pumpkin guts, you could decorate your pumpkins with stencils, paint, or no-carve ideas.
Here are some amazing picks for pumpkin carving:
1. Flower Moon Pumpkin
Paint a real or faux pumpkin black and use chalk to draw an outline of a crescent moon. Then, use an awl punch to punch a series of holes within the moon shape, keeping the holes a minimum of 1/2″ apart. Wipe away the chalk outline, then poke faux flower stems into the holes.
Don’t look this modern Medusa in the eye or you might turn to stone. Carve 2 large round eyes, 2 smaller circles for nostrils, and squiggly mouth into a blue-green pumpkin. (Tip: Measure and plan for eyeholes to fit LED lights snugly.) Push in LED lights. Hot-glue armature wire to back of rubber snakes, leaving a few extra inches on back end. Push wired snakes into top at sides for pigtails.
3. Chalk Paint Pumpkin Candy Holder
This craft is best completed with a faux pumpkin to keep your candy fresh! Mark a hole on the top half of a faux pumpkin. Using a pumpkin carving set, carefully cut out a hole in the top half of the pumpkin. Sand down any rough edges. Paint the entire pumpkin with black chalk paint and let it dry. Fill with candy and write a message with chalk.
4. Mummy Pumpkin
Carve an opening out of the top of the pumpkin and scoop out the seeds. Cut pumpkin horizontally all the way around, 1″ to 2″ below the opening. Repeat 4 to 6 times until you’ve carved the whole pumpkin into 1″ to 2″ circles all the way around (don’t worry about making your cuts particularly straight or wavy).
Separate the pieces. Keeping the top and bottom pieces the same, restack the others in a different order. Rotate the pieces until you get a shape you like, enlarging the carvings for eyes or mouth if desired. Starting from the bottom, lift each level of pumpkin, insert 3 to 4 toothpicks onto the level below, then press down to secure in place. Continue with the next level up until entire pumpkin is held together. Place beans into eye holes, securing with half-toothpicks if necessary.
5. Mason Jar Pumpkin
To complement your farmhouse chic decor, take the time to carve out a classic mason jar on your pumpkin. Instead of the iconic Ball logo, go with something more festive.
6. Witch Pumpkin
Make this bewitching display at home by first hollowing a green heirloom pumpkin. Carve out mouth and eyes, then attach parsnip nose with toothpicks. Straight-pin faux berry branches on top for hair. Print hat template and trace onto felt; cut out tracing and assemble with hot glue. Wrap ½-inch satin ribbon above hat brim and place on top of hair.
7. Lollipop Pumpkin
Hollow out medium round pumpkin from the bottom. Carve half-circle mouth with a tooth, 2 half-circle eyes with pupils and triangle nose.
For eyes, push in inner piece (don’t remove). Then, etch away skin on pupils and tooth with linoleum cutter. Use awl to poke holes about 1 1/2″ apart across top and sides of pumpkin. Push lollipops into holes to create hair.
8. Zombie Skeletons
The walking dead are rising up — in your lawn. Life-sized bony limbs fit stretched across doubledecker gourds.
9. Squash People
Who says a Jack-o’-Lantern has to be made from a pumpkin? These butternut squash goblins sport button eyes and parsnip noses; carving out the vegetable from the bottom adds stability and makes adding a light easy.
10. Spots and Dots
It may look elaborate, but this polka-dot pattern is fairly easy. Sketch your pattern with a marker, leaving enough space between dots so holes won’t overlap. Punch it out with a power drill and various bits. A detailed design shines brighter by placing LED string lights inside.