The famous pumpkin king Jack Skellington is the perfect Halloween decoration! With the creepy star from Halloween Town and pretty mummy lanterns, you can easily create a spooky and cosy atmosphere in your house. This is how to carve Jack Skellington and how to make cute mummy lanterns!
He is the great role model of all inhabitants of Halloween Town: Jack Skellington. The pumpkin skeleton from the stop-motion film A Nightmare before Christmas is one of the most beautiful jack-o’-lanterns for me and with these instructions you will definitely succeed!
Working time: 1-2 hours
First things first: all types of pumpkins are suitable for jack-o-lanterns. However, vegetable pumpkins are the easiest and most impressive for Halloween pumpkin carving: you can buy them from October from medium to huge. Make sure the pumpkin is ripe – when tapped, the pumpkin will sound hollow and the skin will be hard. The pumpkin skin should also show no cracks, dents or injuries.
To hollow out the pumpkin, cut off a lid to start. For our Jack O”Lantern, we cut jags about ¼ inch deep all around the pumpkin below the stem with a sharp knife with a narrow blade. Try to cut in the jags at an angle – this way the pumpkin closes better.
Then simply lift off the lid. Using an ice cream scoop or tablespoon, first remove the seeds and fibrous pumpkin flesh and put it in the bowl for the waste. The pumpkin wall is now still 2-5 cm thick, depending on the pumpkin size, and it’s time to scoop! Peel the soft pumpkin flesh down to about 2 cm of the outer wall into a bowl, from which you can later cook a delicious pumpkin soup.
Don’t forget to hollow out the lid as well!
Big eye sockets, nostrils and a wide grinning grimace – that is Jack Skellington’s typical face. To make sure every cut fits, you paint or carve Jack’s grimace into the pumpkin shell before you start carving the Halloween pumpkin. I painted the outline directly onto the pumpkin. The best way to do this is with a waterproof pen. However, as I wanted to make the inside of the pumpkin into a soup, I simply carved the lines with a blunt pencil. There are also many great templates on the internet that you only need to print out and transfer directly to the pumpkin.
When carving, it is best to start with the eyes. They are the easiest and provide a good opportunity to try out the ideal tool for the smaller-scale areas. First, you make a cut about 2 cm long in the centre of the eye with a sharp knife. I drove a fine fret saw blade into this cut and carefully sawed out the eye socket of Jack Skellingtons. The risk of carving errors is lower if you divide large areas into small ones un
Now comes the heaviest and most filigree: Jack Skellington’s nose. I carved the nostrils in the middle with the tip of a narrow knife and was able to carve them out wonderfully with the fretsaw blade.
The wide grinning mouth is easier again, because you can cut a wide cut from one corner of the mouth to the other with the knife. From this cut, saw out the teeth upwards and downwards at intervals of 1 – 1.5 cm.
Tip: You slipped the knife while carving the Halloween pumpkin? Carving mistakes can be easily concealed by using a toothpick to attach the accidentally sawed-off piece of pumpkin back to your Halloween pumpkin.
Pumpkin lanterns unfortunately rot or mould quickly, especially if you leave them burning in a warm room. But even when it’s nice and cool and the Jack O’Lantern is lit outside the front door, the heat from the candle flame accelerates the rotting process. With a few simple tools, however, you can wonderfully prolong the life of your Jack Skelleton.
Once you have finished carving, you should soak up any moisture that has escaped from inside the pumpkin and the cut edges with a kitchen towel and rub them dry. Now you can varnish the pumpkin with a transparent natural varnish – or simply spray it with hairspray!
Warmth accelerates mould growth – that’s why it’s advisable to store the jack-o’-lantern outside in the cool overnight.
Craft time: 5 minutes
These pretty mummy lanterns are atmospheric and easy to make.
First take an empty jam jar and coat it all around with craft glue. Then wrap a gauze bandage around the jar – one roll of gauze bandage is enough for 2 conventional jam jars. It’s best to work from the top down and glue the end of the gauze bandage to the bottom of the jar.
Then glue the wiggly eyes on and stick the plastic flies all around the gauze bandage with all-purpose glue.
We found the idea for this super quick Halloween decoration at Creativblog!
We wish you a spooky Halloween!
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