Picture Pumpkins: Give Your Halloween Memories a Gourdy Glow

October 21st, 2013
Extra photos for bloggers: 123

We’ve all been there.

You’ve braved the pumpkin’s innards and spent hours etching its Titian-hued flesh.

Then, the neighbor’s cat dashes by the window (or was that a ghost?) and suddenly you’ve lopped the smirk right off of Jack O. Lantern’s face.

It’s time to defy the exacting standards of our annual October undertaking and replace them with a more photo-realistic (because we’re using a real picture!) and totally classy (because we’re framing it!) pumpkin.

It’s a gourd revolution!

Make a Simple Picture Pumpkin

WHY IT’S COOL

Our pumpkin art isn’t merely more simple than the traditional Jack O’Lantern. It looks fantastic, too!

By day, the frame makes your pumpkin look like a doyenne of decor. By night? The flickering light from the faux-candle makes the photo dance around like a still from an old-timey movie, which is both cool and a little creepy.

Just how we like our All Hallows’ Eve decor.

INGREDIENTS:

  • A pumpkin with one relatively flat side
  • Your favorite seasonal photo
  • Tracing paper
  • Tape
  • A printer
  • A knife or pumpkin-carving tools
  • A flat frame (we found one at on the unfinished-wood aisle at our local craft store)
  • 2 Nails
  • A hammer
  • A flameless candle (safety first!)

STEP 1: PICTURE PERFECT

Dig through your mom’s albums for a Halloween photo of yore.

Bonus points if it involves: a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle; a Renaissance poet; DJ Jazzy Jeff and/or the Fresh Prince; or all of the above.

Scan your photo and edit as needed. We found that over-saturating a bit really help the final product pop.

STEP 2: ENTER THE PRINTER

Tape your tracing paper to a piece of printer paper to make it sturdy enough to run through the printer.

Print the picture, then set it aside to dry.

STEP 3: GET GRUESOME

Slice off the top of your gourd and pull out its guts. Don’t forget to make a notch in the lid so it goes back on easy-peasy in the dark.

(Never carved a pumpkin? Our girl MStew shows you how it’s done.)

STEP 4: YOU CUT A HOLE IN THE … PUMPKIN

Grab a buddy to hold the frame in place on the pumpkin’s relatively flat side. Use your carving tools to mark your cutting lines; you’ll want the hole in the pumpkin to be just a bit larger than the frame’s photo opening.

Complete the carving and pop out the excess pumpkin.

STEP 5: GET ATTACHED

Trim the photo, tape it to the frame, and then nail the frame into place. We recommend a nice scroll-y frame so you don’t have to nail through the wood.

STEP 6: LIGHT IT UP

Wait until dark. Insert a flameless candle and gasp with delight. (Or lug the pumpkin to the darkest part of the basement and bask in your handiwork’s glory right away!)

TAKING IT FURTHER

  • Don’t toss all of those innards! Save the pumpkin seeds and roast ‘em up.
  • Dig up a bunch of photos to create a multi-pumpkin trip down memory lane!
  • Amp up the spooky: Put a ghost in your pic!
Posted in DIY, Photo Projects, Tutorials