Creative Halloween Pumpkins

It's easy to make these cream-of-the-pumpkin-crop designs. We'll show you how to start carving and give you an inside look at how the BHG Halloween Tricks and Treats magazine staff created these fun designs.

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Cheese and mice pumpkin
Mouse House

    The plastic mice caught in the act of squeezing into this cheesy condo will make your trick-or-treaters shriek with fright.

Halloween Daze

    To channel the spirits of Halloween, gaze into these hypnotic eyes. Any mouth and nose shapes will work, as long as you carve mesmerizing eye spirals for their zombie-like trances.

Boo-tiful Beasts

    Stretch your creativity beyond simple carving and add playful eyes and gourds to this year's pumpkin crop for some silly monsters. Craft alien eyes from clear ornament halves and crafts foam.

Clever Carvings

    Who says pumpkins have to wear faces for Halloween? These orange gourds clearly have something to say. Use stencils to carve out silly messages to greet guests as they walk by your garden.


    This Halloween speed demon made a rough landing, but re-creating her is a breeze with witchy wardrobe items and stocking-striped sticks. Her hat, shoes, and cape can be found online or at theatrical shops. Simple sticks or dowel rods make great legs for the silliest pumpkin on the block.

Cuisine Art

    Welcome candy-craving kids with this culinary critter. Our happy chef has a nose -- a gourd actually -- for sniffing out the sweetest treats.

Halloween Tap Dance

    This witch has rhythm! Tall pumpkins set the stage for this soft-shoe scenario. All you need to keep in step is black paint, ribbon, and shallow carving.

    Editor's Note: The next slides give you a behind-the-scenes look into how our Halloween Tricks and Treats staff crafted these crazy pumpkins.

Goofy Group

    Pose your jack-o'-lanterns for a picture and they turn into a gang of real cut-ups. A perfect idea for not-so-perfect pumpkins, this grouping works best if you play up the flaws.

Good Boy

    Craft our pumpkin pooch, or carve one to mimic your own family pet. This pup gets his personality from gourds (for his tail, ears, and feet), a small radish (for his nose), sunflower seeds (for whiskers), and a real dog collar.

Aunt Hattie

    No need for carving tools to conjure the spirit of lovable Aunt Hattie. With a little dress-up fun, you can raise a whole wacky pumpkin family to welcome guests to your home. Switch things up by putting your pumpkin on its side and using the stem as a nose.

Eye-Yi-Yi -- Eyes!

    Losing your marbles? It's understandable with all these eerie eyes staring at you. Pairs of almond shapes, carved into the front of a pumpkin, are just the right size to grip cat's-eye marbles.

Home Alone

    With a toothy howl and eyeballs askew, this little pumpkin looks as though he's seen a ghost. To let him raise his hands in horror, perch the carved face atop a pair of stuffed garden gloves.

Batty in the Belfry

    Turn your pumpkin into a piece of architecture, such as this belfry Or try an attic or even a single window. All you have to do to make the scene hair-raising is let loose a swarm of plastic bats.

Terrifying Tools

    Our crew loaded up on spray paint, scoops, saws, and accessories to decorate clever Halloween pumpkins.

Inside Out

    Removing the seeds and pumpkin guts was a must-do for Halloween Tricks and Treats freelancer Holly Raibikis before carving her pumpkin.

Getting Prepped

    We drew a sketch and assembled accessories before bringing Aunt Hattie to life.

Pie Patterns

    Halloween Tricks and Treats Art Director Shawn Roorda tapes on a printed pattern for the Clever Carvings project.

Careful Carving

    Roorda carefully follows outlined letters with a medium-size pumpkin saw.

Draw It On

    Halloween Tricks and Treats Editor-in-Chief Ann Blevins draws the beginnings of the Cuisine Art pumpkin.

Spooky Snout

    Blevins inserted wood skewers into a gray pumpkin to hold her Cuisine Art pumpkin's gourd nose in place.

Crow Cover

    Freelancer Wade Scherrer transfers the cutout crow seen on the cover of Halloween Tricks and Treats® 2008.

Silly and Sideways

    We played up the imperfections of this large pumpkin by using a gouge to create eyes, teeth, smile lines, and wrinkles, and then made him part of the Goofy Group pumpkins.

Creepy Carvings

    Amid gourds, tools, papers, and pumpkin guts, freelancer Kristin Cleveland intensely works on perfecting her pumpkin. By cutting into the bottom, she kept the pumpkin's stem intact.

Let it Dry

    After using a gouge to carve narrow, alternating stocking stripes, we painted this pair of bewitching feet with black paint. We made sure to give the dancing duo ample time to dry.

White Knight

    We cut the eye slits for the Eerie Eyes pumpkin and covered them, along with the stem, before priming and spray-painting the pumpkin a dark, spooky black.

Hole-y Smokes!

    Without a glowing candle and tiny plastic mice, our cheesy pumpkin was lonely.


    We found the plastic mice from the Mouse House hiding when we were working on creating a Boo-tiful Beast pumpkin.

Goofy Grin

    We created the friendly face on the Halloween Tricks and Treats cover by transferring a pattern onto the pumpkin. We cut the openings with carving tools and used a gouge to carve teeth and eyes deep enough to reveal the inner rind.

Scared Stiff

    By lightly stuffing garden gloves with fiberfill, we created this expressive pumpkin's hands.

For the Birds

    Before deciding on using a pattern to carve a raven into the cover pumpkin, the Halloween Tricks and Treats crew experimented with placing artificial birds in the gourd instead.

Holding On

    Halloween Tricks and Treats freelance designer Kristin Cleveland cradles a pumpkin in her lap, allowing for easier carving.

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