10 Midwest Pumpkin Stencils | Midwest Living
By Stencil designs by Christi Boudewyns and Conny Bell
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Barn and silo pumpkin stencil
Make your pumpkin Midwest-special this fall with our stencils for a lighthouse, barn, maple leaf, deer, eagle and more.
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Lighthouse pumpkin stencil
Lighthouse pumpkin stencil
About 200 lighthouses line the Great Lakes shores in Midwest states — over half of them in Michigan. Show off your lighthouse pride with this stencil! Download lighthouse stencil pattern.
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Barn and silo pumpkin stencil
Barn and silo pumpkin stencil
Midwesterners love barns as symbols of our farming heritage. Bring that Midwest spirit to your front porch with this stencil.Download barn stencil pattern.
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Maple leaf pumpkin stencil
Maple leaf pumpkin stencil
A variety of maple trees, including sugar maples, red maples and silver maples, show their gorgeous autumn colors in the Midwest each fall. Carve the lovely maple leaf shape into your pumpkin with our stencil.Download maple leaf stencil.
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North Woods cabin stencil
North Woods cabin stencil
Fall comes early in the North Woods, where generations of Midwesterners have vacationed in rustic cabins. Bring that cozy-cabin feel to your porch with this pumpkin stencil.Download North Woods stencil.
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Corn is the major crop in much of the Midwest. Celebrate this symbol of the Heartland using our design.Download corn stencil.
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The deer, common throughout the Midwest, is an official state symbol of Michigan, Wisconsin, Nebraska and Ohio. Etch this proud buck onto your pumpkin with our pattern.Download deer stencil.
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Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota grow more than 85 percent of the United State’s crop of sunflowers! Add Midwest sunflower cheer to your pumpkin. Download sunflower stencil.
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Kansas is the largest wheat producer in the United States, followed by North Dakota. Carve and etch these waving wheat stalks onto your jack-o’-lantern.Download wheat stencil.
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Eagle watching is popular in the Midwest, especially in winter when the birds migrate from northern homes to spots such as Wabasha, Minnesota. Put this proud symbol of the United States on your pumpkin.Download eagle stencil.
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Ponderosas and other varieties of pines are scattered throughout the Black Hills and other areas of the Midwest. Use our pattern to etch a pinecone onto your Halloween gourd.Download pinecone stencil.
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By Stencil designs by Christi Boudewyns and Conny Bell
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10 pumpkin carving ideas – pretty and peculiar designs for Halloween
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A fun and seasonal pastime, pumpkin carving ideas are most sought-after in October – the month of Halloween. A plain pumpkin can go from basic to amazing in a matter of minutes. And by using stencils or going freehand, you can produce some killer creations.
But if your DIY Halloween decorations go as far as carving a few triangles into this beautifully colored gourd – don’t be scared, as there is plenty to inspire you creatively in spooky season.
Pumpkin carving ideas to practice
From creepy classic designs to self-serve candy containers for trick-or-treaters, there’s lots to experiment with and a Jack-O-Lantern or two is sure to enhance any fall decorating ideas you have around the house also.
‘It’s unclear when the jack o lantern was first invented, but it is believed to have originated in Ireland and Scotland,’ says Jamie Jones, founder of bespoke pumpkin carving studio, Pumpkin Freak.
‘One of the earliest records of a mention of the Jack-O-Lantern comes from Irish folklore, in which a man named Stingy Jack tricks the devil into climbing an apple tree and then throws him down to earth.’
‘The history of this festival has been traced back as far as 1000 AD when people would use turnips, potatoes or beets to make their Jack-O-Lanterns. They would carve faces into these vegetables and place candles inside them for light. These vegetables were later replaced with pumpkins due to their growing popularity in North America.’
1. Go for a classic Jack-O-Lantern
(Image credit: @oliver.theminibernedoodle)
You know what they say: if it ain’t broke – don’t fix it. So if you’re looking for a pumpkin carving idea that’s easy as well as being familiar – a single, or trio of pumpkins in an classic Jack-O-Lantern design is something that’s not to be sniffed at – as @oliver.theminibernedoodle proves.
There are thousands of free designs available online, so it’s simply a case of finding one you like, printing it off, cutting it out and then drawing around the paper stencil. Or, if you’re a little more artistic and clued up on how to carve a pumpkin like a pro you can go freehand.
2. Swap triangle eyes for eyelashes
(Image credit: @houseonahideaway)
A more feminine alternative to cutting out triangular eyes in your Jack-O-Lantern is to carve eyelash-like shapes. In this pumpkin decorating idea by Lauren (aka @houseonhideaway) she’s given this “Jackie-O-Lantern” a girly glow-up, swapping in a grin over a grimace too for a less scary pumpkin carving ideas. And of course, we can’t get enough of the pink ringlets.
(Image credit: @morning.sophie)
While we love all three of these pumpkin carving ideas by @morning.sophie, we’re particularly fond of the foil-braced orange face who has received some orthodontic work from its owner.
Other than the train tracks, we love the detail that’s gone into giving the ‘teeth’ of this design some texture – something you can achieve with a fork or paring knife.
4. Unleash 90’s vibes with a Barbie pink pumpkin
(Image credit: Marina The 90’s Barbie)
If you were born in the nineties, or grew up role-playing with the iconic female figurine – chances are you’ll go gaga over this cool creation. Create a dreamhouse for you dollies by sticking them in this pink carved pumpkin.
To nail the logo, find the infamous ‘B’ logo online, print it off onto some paper, cut it out and tape it to the pumpkin, using it as a stencil to guide you. Use a pencil to etch around the letter. You’ll then need to carefully carve this using a small knife. Cutting a little silhouette around the initial design, like Youtuber, Marina The 90’s Barbie has done to give it more definition and make it pop!
She painted thin layers of bubblegum pink spray paint onto the pumpkin, covering the squash more generously as she got towards the bottom for an ombre effect.
You’ll want this to look clean and pristine for picture-perfect results.
5. Create a Disney Princess inspired pumpkin
(Image credit: @lubyandlola)
Move over Cinderella – there’s a new Disney princess in town – and comes with her own pretty purple pumpkin carving ideas. Adorned with lilac flowers and gold glitter cards, one Instagrammer took to her gourd to create a touching Tangled-inspired scene.
‘I drew the lantern scene on my iPad to then be cut out on my Cricut, which saves a lot of work!’ explains Lola Hancock, founder of Luby & Lola.
‘Then I simply cut a circle at the front of the pumpkin, painted it lilac and used to a glue gun to add the glittery silhouettes and paper flowers. Also used battery candles, just in case!’
While the adults may want to take charge of the carving, dipping cards in glue and sprinkling gold glitter over them is a just one of the Halloween activities that younger kids and preschoolers can get involved in.
6. Create a self-service candy bowl
(Image credit: Home Depot)
Pumpkins make great Halloween tool for a self-service style trick-o-treat. Whether you’ve a newborn in the home who is sleeping, or you’re out visiting friends and family over the holiday season – you needn’t miss out on all the fun.
‘Create a pumpkin candy bowl this Halloween by digging out your pumpkin and carve a fun message using a rotary tool,’ says Sarah Fishburne, director of trend and design, Home Depot.
‘Insert a plastic container or line your Jack-O’-Lantern with foil and fill with assorted candies. Keep this pumpkin candy bowl on display in your home or place it on an outdoor table on your front porch for trick-or-treaters while you’re away.’
Don’t feel obliged to create a decorative design on the front. If you’re after easy pumpkin carving ideas, a simple removal of the pumpkin’s seeds and cavity will suffice.
7. Fake it with foam
(Image credit: @thewoolycanvas)
‘See those two carved pumpkins? Take a guess, real or fake?’ asks Gillian (aka @thewoolycanvas)
‘I recently learned from DIY blogger, Stephanie Hanna that you can carve foam craft pumpkins with a hot knife. I own a wood burning set from a previous The Crafter’s Box kit that includes a blade so I tried my hand at carving craft pumpkins and am in love with the results and the simple fact that I can bring them out year after year!
And, as they’re a non-edible product – it’s one way to stop pests like squirrels eating pumpkins.
8. Carve the top of your pumpkin
(Image credit: @mooseylips)
Often, we will use the top of the gourd as a lid or head of our creation – some going as far as to use the innards in, gory or gruesome ways. But another way to tackle this task, is to flip it on its head – quite literally.
So before you give your squash a lobotomy, try and see if you can cut facial features into it. It’s one of those pumpkin carving ideas that is simple, yet not many people do it. If you’ve picked your own from pumpkin patch or farm, you can even leave the stalk intact to depict a gnarly nose.
This Jarrahdale pumpkin variety is particularly good styled with grey, blue green decor – and it’s zombie-like tinge is best suited if you’re on the (witch) hunt for scary ideas.
(Image credit: Andy Branca-Masa)
You’ve probably seen those fancy, postcard-perfect fruit designs in South Asia, but this pumpkin decorating idea can be done at home with a little time, patience and a steady hand.
Instead of taking a knife to a watermelon or pineapple, Andy Branca-Masa (aka @andys_carving) has sketched out his designs on a seasonal squash variety. But if you’re more of a beginner, we suggest you start out with pumpkin carving ideas that are a little simpler or even no carve pumpkin decorating ideas.
10. Drill holes
(Image credit: @spooksandsnow)
If your carving skills aren’t quite up to scratch, one way to tackle your pumpkin carving ideas is with your DIY tools – namely an electric drill.
Using this piece of hardware will deliver consistent results that you can easily control. We love this swirled pattern design by Spooks & Snow on Instagram, but you can also ‘drill’ out a slogan or go for a simple polka dot style instead.
To make this a fool-proof, easy pumpkin carving idea, dot your design on first with a marker pen.
11. Use multiple pumpkins
(Image credit: @morning.sophie)
If there’s one pumpkin carving idea that screams “Bite me” – it’s this. Using a little and large combo of pumpkins, it’s a duo that’s destined for success. To create a cool contrast, why not use multiple varieties. For example, your standard orange squash could be gorging on a mini ghost gourd.
Top pumpkin carving tips
If you are feeling inspired and want to carve your own Jack-O’-Lantern this Halloween, Charis Hawkins, brand manager, Magnet has put together some top tips to help.
1. Select your pumpkin carefully
There are many shapes, sizes and colors to choose from when picking a pumpkin. It’s best to choose one with a surface that’s fresh, and with minimal bruises or soft spots. A flat base and a sturdy stem are also good key features to look out for.
2. Cover and prepare your surfaces and equipment before cutting
We recommend carving your pumpkin on the kitchen counter or dining table. Wipe down and cover your surface with cardboard, newspaper or a plastic sheet before you start. Be careful when using sharp tools and always supervise children. We’d also suggest having a bowl ready to scoop the insides of your pumpkin into – as it can get messy.
3. Cut from the bottom of your pumpkin, not the top
Creating the entrance to your pumpkin from the bottom instead of the top allows for you to pull the insides out easier and creates a more streamlined look. If using a real candle, it also prevents the risk of accidental burns when lighting the flame inside as you can place your pumpkin on top of the candle instead of trying to drop a lit candle in.
4. Scoop out as much as you can and thin the side you are going to carve
Before carving the pattern, clean out all the seeds and strings from the pumpkin. Scrape the insides with a large spoon, ice cream scoop, or scraping tool and be sure to thin the sides you’re carving the design into. Aim to thin the wall to around 1 inch in thickness, this makes the carving easier and cleaner.
5. Use a template to carve the pattern
You can create your own template by sketching a design on paper. If you are feeling less artistic, you can also print one online. Tape the stencil to the pumpkin then trace the design by poking multiple holes along the lines. When finished remove the paper and rub flour over your design. This will make your lines easier to see so that you can more easily join up the holes ready for carving.
6. Don’t be scared to get creative
Taking inspiration from designs online, such as Pinterest, can be a great way to initiate your creativity. Consider your tools and abilities when choosing a design. If you’re more advanced, try shaving parts of the pumpkin at different depths to get different, more detailed effects. If you want to save the mess and avoid sharp tools, you can even choose to paint your pumpkin instead of carving. Whatever you do, don’t worry too much about it being perfect, just have fun!
7. Mistakes can be salvaged
If any pieces come off that were not meant to, don’t panic, you can use cocktail sticks to secure the runaway pieces back into place. We also advise that when you’re popping out any piece that you push from the inside to dislodge them.
8. Keep your pumpkin fresh for longer
When you cut into your pumpkin it will start to rot, so we recommend leaving the carving to the last minute if you still want it looking fresh on Halloween. There are also a few ways to maximise the lifespan of your pumpkin. After carving, soak your pumpkin in cold water with a small amount of bleach. When removed, dry it well to extend its freshness. You can also spray the pumpkin daily with a water/bleach solution to rehydrate and stop mold. This should be done by an adult and children should be kept away from potentially harmful chemicals. If you’re carving with children or under 18, you should always make sure there is an adult present throughout the pumpkin carving process to supervise and make sure carving is fun but safe!
9. Avoid using real candles: The heat from real flames can cook the pumpkin, drying it out and speeding up the decay process. Using battery powered candles can provide the same lighting effect without the negative impact. This way, you can also try out different color lights!
10. Don’t let the pumpkin insides go to waste
Over half of the 15 million pumpkins produced in the UK are used only for carving – with most going straight to waste after Halloween is over. However, there are plenty of ways to use your leftover pumpkin insides – from roasted pumpkin seeds to pumpkin dog treats, the internet is full of different recipes. However, do not eat any of the pumpkin if you have treated it with bleach.
How long do carved pumpkins last?
‘It really depends on the pumpkin, the carving, and a bunch of other factors,’ says Marc Evan, co-founder of Brooklyn, NYC-based, Maniac Pumpkin Carvers.
‘Pumpkins can last a few days to three weeks or longer with proper care. They look their absolute best for the first few days after carving and can typically look great for at least a week with minimal care. ‘
‘Some things you can do to prolong your pumpkin are keeping it wrapped tightly in plastic wrap when not on display. Keeping your pumpkin cold also helps, so refrigerate it or keep it somewhere cool whenever possible.’
‘Another great tip for pumpkins that are starting to shrivel or look old is to give it an ice bath (just make sure to remove any lights or electronics first) with a capful of bleach added. This will plump the pumpkin back up as well as kill any mold growth.’
‘Wrapping the pumpkin tightly with plastic wrap and keeping it cool when not on display will greatly increase the pumpkins life. You can also lightly spray your pumpkin with diluted lemon juice or vinegar to help prevent oxidation.’
How are carved pumpkins lit?
‘We use custom fitted electric lighting. Our LED lights are equivalent to 40 watt bulbs (60-100 watt equivalent are available for larger pumpkins),’ explains Chris Soria, co-founder at Maniac Pumpkin Carvers.
‘They are energy efficient and stay cool, helping your pumpkin last longer. We recently switched to LEDs from Compact Fluorescents (CFL). They are a more consistent light as well as much safer to use and better for the environment.’
‘Please save your lighting units for future pumpkins or reuse the the standard sized bulbs in your home. Our LED bulbs are rated to last for 20 years!’
Pumpkin carving by Ray Villafane
A very popular topic on the internet! You probably saw a lot of things from the work of this artist, but let’s collect everything in one place. In some places you may come across the work of other masters, but everything is very impressive.
Halloween is a holiday of purely Western culture, we have tried to popularize it in recent years, but it did not go beyond themed parties in clubs. I don’t feel any particular grief about this, although, to be honest, the holiday is very competent – these pumpkins, costumes, the general atmosphere. But in the States, there is simply a cult of Halloween, which is proved by pictures of celebrities with pumpkins and in makeup, flashing in the paparazzi chronicles.
There are many components of this holiday, but the main one is, of course, the pumpkin-lantern. Designer and artist Ray Villafane has been very creative in creating these Halloween paraphernalia.
Villafein used to draw comics for Marvel, but he realized that they would not make him famous. The 41-year-old artist’s favorite genre of film and comic art is horror, so he decided to create in this direction. But drawing on paper or sculpting in clay is unoriginal, so Villafane came up with the idea of sculpting his horrors from … pumpkins
Ray Villafane was born in 1969 in New York, he graduated from the University of Painting and Graphics. Since 1993, the artist has lived in Michigan with his wife and six children. For a long time, Ray worked as an ordinary teacher at a school. One day he and his class were decorating the hall for the celebration of Halloween, where he had to make a head out of a pumpkin. And since he always loved sculpture, he decided – why not try to treat a pumpkin like clay? And he did it!
pumpkins for Halloween do not take much time for the artist to create, he uses ordinary cutlery and a scalpel to create them. Ray writes: “The most difficult model for me was a pumpkin with a head on a snake, it took me almost a whole day. And so, the production of one sculpture takes 2-3 hours. But not all pumpkins turn out well. The main thing here is to choose the most fleshy
. Sometimes I choose a perfectly shaped pumpkin, but then I realize that it is not heavy enough, and therefore not dense enough for carving. I also like pumpkins with character, they themselves suggest which heroes they will turn out best.
Ray creates not only pumpkin sculptures, but also collectible superhero figurines, as well as photographs and illustrations for many famous magazines. But, of course, his pumpkins for Halloween received special attention, the artist will even receive a solid award for his perishable creations.
See more of Ray Villafane’s work on his creative studio website www.villafanestudios.com. By the way, there you can also see the process of creating Halloween pumpkins .
Here’s another look, What can be done with straight arms and cardboard . and here is Paper Stained Glass by Eric Standley . And I also really liked Food art from the artist Hong Yi (Hong Yi)
The original article is on the site InfoGlaz.rf Link to the article from which this copy was made – http://infoglaz. ru/?p=31863
Pumpkin moonshine: recipes and subtleties of cooking
Pumpkin is an unpretentious and healthy vegetable that grows in most suburban areas. Many different dishes are prepared from it, it bears fruit well, it is stored for a long time. Pumpkin is widely used for the preparation of baby food, dietary dishes. Its pulp and seeds contain many vitamins and trace elements useful for our body. Juice is made from it, soups are boiled, dried, steamed, baked. It attracts amateurs of home brewing primarily as a source of sugar-containing raw materials. So if you have a good distiller, then you can get pumpkin moonshine from mash on this melon culture, make delicious liquors and tinctures with it. In moonshine from it there is a slight aftertaste of zucchini.
Peculiarities of pumpkin mash for moonshine
For mash, table varieties are used, which are sweeter. Muscat varieties are also suitable, from which the distillate is especially fragrant. It is desirable that the fruits lie down for at least one month. In aged fruits, the content of a substance that releases methanol when heated (pectin) decreases.
Pumpkin moonshine is a popular drink among distillers, which is easy to prepare at home. And given that the fruits are stored for a long time, mash can be cooked for almost a whole year.
Pumpkin contains from 5 to 20% sugar (depending on the variety and area where it was grown), from 15 to 20% starch, pulp with low juiciness. Moreover, the longer the fruits are rested, the higher the starch content will be. It is best to start the production of pumpkin moonshine in late autumn. Preference for the manufacture of mash is given to ripe, but not overripe and stale vegetables.
Although it is sweet, you still have to add sugar so that the taste of the resulting drink does not disappoint you. Without the use of sugar, the yield of pure alcohol will be less and its strength will be negligible. Sugar content should be increased to 30%. There are no wild microorganisms on it that will ensure the fermentation process, therefore it is recommended to add yeast (dry, pressed or alcoholic). If you make mash without yeast, for example, on raisin or berry sourdough, then its fermentation period will increase significantly (several times), but the quality will not be affected in any way.
Please note that only pulp is used as raw material. Peel and seeds must be removed, moldy areas removed, if any. By the way, you can eat seeds. Pumpkin moonshine is drunk softly and pleasantly, although it is not a noble drink.
Pumpkin mash recipes
There are two ways to prepare mash. First, the necessary ingredients are prepared:
- pumpkin – 25 kg;
- pressed yeast – 360 grams;
- sugar – 1-4 kg;
- water 16 liters + 2 liters per kilogram of sugar.
Preparation is carried out in stages:
- pumpkin is peeled and seeds are removed, cut into small pieces, covered with water and boiled for 30-40 minutes, stirring constantly to make it soft;
- boiled vegetable is mashed or crushed with a mixer. Transfer to a container where it will ferment. Add sugar, stir;
- , after cooling to 25-28 degrees, add yeast and tightly close, put a water seal or a medical glove with a hole. Remove for fermentation in a dark place.
Braga will be ready in 7-10 days. Determining readiness is simple: carbon dioxide has ceased to be released, the bottom is covered with a layer of sediment. The taste becomes bitter, with the smell of alcohol. Using a siphon, drain the liquid from the sediment. You can start racing.
Alternative recipe (no cooking).
Juice is squeezed out of a raw pumpkin. Water will be required two times less than according to the classic recipe. The juice is mixed with cake, water, sugar and yeast are added. A container with a water seal or a glove is placed in a dark place. Fermentation is faster (3-5 days).
So that the remains of the pulp do not burn when heated, the mash is filtered through gauze folded in several layers. The distillate is collected when the yield falls below 30 degrees. It may be cloudy, but it’s not terrible. It is diluted with water to a strength of 20 degrees and distilled a second time. The first 15% of the amount of pure alcohol is drained separately. This is a harmful fraction containing harmful impurities, including methyl alcohol (can be used for technical needs). When the fortress at the exit drops to 45 degrees, the collection of distillate is completed.
The finished distillate is bottled and allowed to stand for several days. Then you can taste. You can ennoble it, give it a beautiful color and a pleasant taste, by insisting it on oak chips or keeping it in an oak barrel for two months. It can also be used to prepare original aromatic liqueurs, tinctures.
Braga can also be prepared without sugar. You can saccharify the starch contained in the pumpkin with malt, but in the end there will be less alcohol. You can use any unfermented malt (barley, rye, wheat). For 20 kg of pumpkin you will need 20 liters of water, 100 grams of dry yeast, 200 grams of malt. Boil the pumpkin, make a puree and cool to 64 degrees. Add crushed malt. Close the container, wrap in a warm blanket and leave for 2 hours. Then let cool to room temperature, pour into a fermentation bowl, add yeast. Fermentation will last 5-7 days. Instead of malt, you can use ready-made enzymes (amylosubtilin and glucavamorin) sold in specialized stores. The first enzyme is added when the boiled puree cools down to 80 degrees, the second, when it reaches 65 degrees and infused for 2 hours. Yeast is poured into a liquid that has cooled to room temperature and left to ferment in a dark place for 8 days.
How to store pumpkin moonshine
The shelf life of the tincture increases due to the content of alcohol in its composition. It can be stored in the refrigerator or in the basement for up to six months. A prerequisite is an opaque container, lack of lighting or, even worse, direct sunlight.