How to Decorate a Pumpkin without Carving

October 21st, 2012 by admin

Toothy grins and spooky expressions on pumpkins are the hallmark of Halloween, however, if you have small children you may not want to pull out the carving knives and sharp objects to decorate your pumpkins just yet. To save small fingers from any nicks or cuts, but still take advantage of pumpkin decorating, try some of these ideas that will allow you to create stunning or creepy pumpkins without using a knife.

Glamorous Glitter- Start by covering your work surface with newspaper, as you will be using watered down glue, glitter and a paint brush to decorate your pumpkins which can get a little messy. Decorate one section of the pumpkin at a time so the glue does not dry out.  Put some regular school glue into a bowl and add a little water to thin it out.  This will not be thin like milk, but just thinner than it comes out of the bottle, which makes it spread more easily.  Using an old paint brush, paint the glue onto the pumpkin in a section (like an orange).  Put the glitter into a bowl and then use a spoon to coat the glued part of the pumpkin with glitter.  Tap the pumpkin to knock off any extra glitter.  Move on to the next section of pumpkin and repeat the glittering process.  Continue around the pumpkin until the entire pumpkin is coated in glitter.  Allow the pumpkin to dry completely.  The extra glitter will have gone onto the newspaper so you can pick up the newspaper and dump it back into the bowl to be used for your next pumpkin.  If you find that even after the glue dries you are finding glitter all over you might want to spray the pumpkin with some hair spray to help hold the glitter in place once it dries.

Marker- Using only a marker and your pumpkin you can create a jack-o-lantern look alike without cutting a thing. Draw the face onto the pumpkin with the permanent marker.  This is a good time to be creative and draw a more intricate face that you wouldn’t necessarily be able to cut.  Let the kids use their imagination to make a funny jack-o-lantern, a spooky tree or a haunted house.

Pretty Painted Polka-dots- Select a bunch of different colors of acrylic paint and a paint brush. Paint the entire pumpkin in a light color and allow it to dry.  Dip the eraser of a pencil into different colors of paint and press a dot onto the pumpkin.  Continue to do these adding different colored polka-dots all over the pumpkin.  Use the end of a wooden spoon to make larger dots if you like.  Let everything dry and your polka-dot pumpkin is complete.

Wild for Washi- Japanese washi tape is relatively new on the crafting scene.  It’s kind of like masking tape, but it comes in many patterns and colors.  They sell stripes, plaid, Chevron, hounds-tooth and many more.  Buy the tape that excites you.  You will also need a dry erase marker and safety scissors. Mark out your pattern on the pumpkin with the dry erase marker.  If you make a mistake it will wipe right off and you can start again.  Wrap the tape around the pumpkin either vertically, horizontally or both following your marker lines.  Cut the tape so that the ends are neat.  You can alternate the patterns around the pumpkin if you like.  You can create your own designs with the tape.  There’s no mess and the kids can do this with little supervision.  Try to use long strips of tape because short pieces will be harder to match up.  If you are using a black dry erase marker you may want to wipe off the marker as you apply the tape so that it doesn’t show through.

Terrific Tissue- You will need newspaper, Mod Podge, tissue paper, glitter (optional) and a paint brush. Start by adding some Mod Podge to a bowl. Tear the tissue into pieces.  Paint some Mod Podge onto an area of the pumpkin and lay the tissue paper onto the wet area.  It’s okay to overlap the tissue paper.  Continue around the pumpkin until the whole thing is covered.  Add a final layer of Mod Podge to the whole pumpkin and allow it to dry.  You can add glitter to the pumpkin while the Mod Podge is wet if you’d like, but it’s not necessary.

This year consider decorating your pumpkins without doing any carving.  The kids will enjoy decorating their very own pumpkins and you won’t have to worry about having to make an unexpected trip to the emergency room if someone gets cut.

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One Response to “How to Decorate a Pumpkin without Carving”

  1. November 06, 2012 at 7:41 am, Kathleen Winfrey said:

    These are very useful tips! My sister use the marker with her pumpkin last halloween because she has a child and we don’t want them to get hurt. Though, using glitters can also be another good idea. I will try to use that next halloween! Thanks!