An eye for detail is often helpful for pumpkin carving, but don't get frustrated if your pumpkin doesn't look perfect after you've finished carving. There are a few things you can do to patch errors. If your carving edges are jagged, try running a sharp, triangular-head clay modeling tool across the edges to smooth them. If a piece of pumpkin has broken off, stick a wooden skewer in the area of the pumpkin where it should be attached, then gently press the skewer into the broken piece and angle it to fit. It may not look perfect in broad daylight, but by candlelight in the evening, no one will notice.
1. Click the link above to download and print the free cyclops stencil pattern; resize it if necessary so the pattern fits your pumpkin.
2. Clean out the pumpkin by cutting a circle in its underside and using a scoop to scrape out the guts. Tape your stencil to the pumpkin exterior, and use a large nail to poke holes through the paper and into the pumpkin skin, following the stencil lines. Tear off the paper after transferring all lines to the pumpkin.
3. Use a skinny, serrated knife to saw along the nail marks, cutting completely through the wall of the pumpkin. Remove excess pumpkin pieces to reveal the pattern, and rub petroleum jelly on cut pumpkin surfaces to retain the pumpkin's freshness. Light the pumpkin's interior with a battery-operated candle.