We can't recall another pumpkin stencil as beautifully frightening as this one. With tongues of flame forming pupils and teeth and sinuous brows bent in a sneer, this jack-o'-lantern looks impressive enough unlit. With a candle in place, its face seems fashioned from fire.
To keep this jack-o'-lantern's furious face in picture-perfect condition, we recommend cleaning your pumpkin from the bottom, not the top. By carving a circle in the bottom of your pumpkin, there's no top lid and, therefore, no carving seam to detract from your pumpkin's appearance. You're left with a smooth, camera-ready presentation. (We're not the only ones photographing our pumpkins, right?)
1. Use a skinny, serrated crafts knife to carve a circle in the bottom of your pumpkin. Pry out the circle, and level it with your knife; you'll use it later as a candle platform.
2. Reach into your pumpkin and scoop out the remains, reserving the seeds to toast as a snack if desired. Scrape the inside walls of the pumpkin to trim and smooth them, and scrape the inside wall of the pumpkin side you're planning to carve until it is no thicker than 1". Shake the scraps into a trash can.
3. Stick the printed pattern to the side of the pumpkin with tape, and duplicate the pattern onto the pumpkin's exterior by punching closely spaced holes along the stencil lines with a push pin or wooden skewer. Remove the pattern after transferring all stencil lines to the pumpkin.
4. Saw along the holes with your knife, cutting out the sections that form your design. Keep the sections in place within the pumpkin wall until you've completely finished carving; press on the cutout pieces from inside the pumpkin to prod them out.
5. Place an LED candle inside the pumpkin on the platform you made to light up your design.