Tag Archives: pumpkin

Thursday, October 24 2013

Halloween DIY: Jack up the jack-o’-lantern


Whether you’re interested in saving time or fingers, the no-cut pumpkin is becoming Halloween’s most bewitching decor.

If you leave the knife out of it, your creations are limited only to your spooky imagination.

The possibilities are endless in terms of materials, so you can Frankenstein whatever creepy jack-o’-lantern face you like, or abandon the scary aesthetics altogether (see heart and polka dots).

Here are just a few examples to get the crafty juices flowing.

Haute Halloween

Inject some unexpected drama into the traditional Jack O’ Lantern using decorative paper in fabric prints like leopard or lace to make the face.


  1. First, prime and paint the pumpkin, I used Martha Stewart Craft Paint in Mother of Pearl.
  2. Cut out facial features from paper and tape in place.
  3. After the party you can even remove the features for general seasonal decor or replace them with a different cutout, like say a moustache (Movember is coming).

Polka paper makeover

It’s almost a shame to make a pumpkin this pretty, only to have it rot, so enjoy it while it lasts or execute this look on a pumpkin-impersonating gourd that will keep well into the holiday season.I first saw the paper-stripping technique in the October issue of HGTV magazine and had to try it for myself.


  1. Cut the decorative paper of your choice into quarter-inch strips (use bigger strips for a bigger pumpkin) and Mod Podge around the pumpkin’s surface.
  2. Let this dry and Mod Podge overtop.
  3. Then take Martha Stewart Craft Paint in Mother of Pearl, or any metallic paint and roughly brush on the pumpkin’s stem for an antique look.

Black arts

The chalkboard paint pumpkin is perfect for the creative who likes to change their mind. Not happy with your Jack O’ face? Simply wipe off and re-chalk. This pumpkin is also great for parties, as guests will appreciate the opportunity to vandalize pumpkins with their own obscene messages and drawings.


  1. Paint at least two coats of blackboard paint and let dry in between.
  2. Cure by carefully rubbing chalk over surface.
  3. *Note: I found that the chalk chipped off some of the paint, so next time I will try priming it first. Learn from my mistakes!
Saturday, October 27 2012

Halloween DIY: Haunt the halls with Halloween plates


Nothing is scarier than tacky decorations, so step up the spook-cessories with this tutorial from Heather Ribble (Mommyribs.blogspot.com).

Instead of putting decals on windows, Ribble opted to create decorative Halloween plates using Martha Stewart window and mirror clings (sold at Michael’s — but hurry, they are selling out). And the best part is, they are temporary and can be easily swapped out with next season’s motifs.

The clings cost her around $5 (on sale) and she found these plates at a thrift store, also for $5.

Saturday, October 27 2012

Halloween DIY: How to roast pumpkin brains (or seeds)


Even if you’re Bad Cook’s cousin, Dangerous Cook, pumpkin brains (or seeds) are something even the most amateur kitchen dabblers can master. Be warned, picking seeds out of a pumpkin is as gross as you think it is. However, no guts, no delicious glory.

Roasting pumpkin seeds

  1. Rinse pumpkin seeds and pick out pulp (do this before it dries).
  2. Lay out seeds on an oiled baking sheet or tinfoil (rub them around in the oil).
  3. Salt generously and bake at 325 F until toasted (around 25 minutes).
  4. Make sure you stir halfway and don’t overcook, or they’ll be too dried out.