There's no need to shed bitter tears over a broken pumpkin. Just follow these tips! A proper knife is key: Look for sharp skinny serrated blades, like linoleum or woodcutting knives. We also recommend carving sections from the center of your design outward to place less stress on the pumpkin. Finally, only remove cutout pieces after carving the entire design; resist the urge to pop out shapes as you go!
1. Secure the printed stencil to the side of your hollowed-out pumpkin with clear tape, smoothing the paper down as you tape. Poke along the stencil lines with a push pin or needle tool, piercing both the paper and the pumpkin skin below. (Tip: Pin holes should be about 1/8" apart for most-detailed results.)
2. Take down the stencil. With a skinny serrated knife (like those discussed in the stencil caption, above), gently carve along the pin holes to cut out the design.
3. Nudge the cutout sections outward by gently pushing on them with your fingers from inside the pumpkin. Wipe carved surface with petroleum jelly to seal in moisture and add a battery-operated candle to the pumpkin's interior to illuminate the design.