Did you know there are hundreds of pumpkin stencils on BHG.com? It's true. Also, 46% of American adults carve pumpkins on Halloween. And in each of those pumpkins, there are around 500 seeds. But wait... Sorry, that might have been "TMI."
You can never have too much information when it comes to selecting a quality pumpkin. To ensure freshness, remember to test the pumpkin's stem by tugging on it lightly; it should be firmly attached. It's also a good idea to feel the outside of the gourd for soft spots, which can sometimes be difficult to see. Soft areas and blemishes indicate a muture pumpkin, which may not last as long as fresher ones.
1. Attach your printed TMI pattern to the side of your hollowed-out pumpkin with clear tape. (Hint: If the pattern is too large or small for your pumpkin, resize it with a copier to fit.) Pierce the outside of the letters with a pin, creating closely spaced holes in the pumpkin's skin. Take down the stencil after outlining the pattern.
2. Carve the pattern with a thin woodcutting knife, sawing gently along the pin holes. Press on carved pieces from inside the pumpkin to nudge them out.
3. Light up your design with a battery-operated candle.