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Pumpkin Jack-O-Lanterns: Spooky, Elegant, and Just Plain Weird

Updated on August 21, 2013

Lighting Up Halloween

They are everywhere-haunting porches, staircases, flower beds, pathways, and windows. Their eerie glow lights up the spookiest night of the year with scary, toothy grins and lifeless eyes. They are the pumpkin jack-o-lanterns and Halloween wouldn't be the same without them.

No matter how bizarre and macabre Halloween decorations get, the hollowed out gourd is a familiar staple in decorating, its flickering candlelight somehow welcoming. From ceramic and plastic to living orange and white orbs, the pumpkin is one of Halloween's most popular symbol.

Children and adults alike enjoy carving pumpkins for Halloween. The basic face of the past is still popular and easiest to carve, but jack-o-lantern creativity is now at an all time high. Professional pumpkin carvers create masterpieces for theme parks and festivals. Amazing pumpkin displays can be found everywhere. Anyone can now create a fantastic pumpkin using your imagination or patterns found in pumpkin carving kits.

Here is a look at amazing Halloween lanterns made from the humble pumpkin.

Swirled pumpkin lantern by Ale Dycha.

Classic and Stencil Carvings - Click on the thumbnails to see the larger photo.

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You can create interesting pumpkin jack-o-lantern with character stencils. Star Wars is one of the popular kits. My Darth Vadar looks professional and menacing.This is a classic jack-o-lantern everyone is familiar with. Photo was shared on Flickr.Another classic jack-o-lantern with triangular eyes and nose and toothy grin. Photo was shared on Flickr.Some stencil kits are easy to use. My neighbor's ten-year-old son used a stencil kit to create this flying witch.Disney character stencil kits are very popular, although some are more complicated than others. I made a few mistakes with Mufasa, but you can only see them close up.
You can create interesting pumpkin jack-o-lantern with character stencils. Star Wars is one of the popular kits. My Darth Vadar looks professional and menacing.
You can create interesting pumpkin jack-o-lantern with character stencils. Star Wars is one of the popular kits. My Darth Vadar looks professional and menacing.
This is a classic jack-o-lantern everyone is familiar with. Photo was shared on Flickr.
This is a classic jack-o-lantern everyone is familiar with. Photo was shared on Flickr.
Another classic jack-o-lantern with triangular eyes and nose and toothy grin. Photo was shared on Flickr.
Another classic jack-o-lantern with triangular eyes and nose and toothy grin. Photo was shared on Flickr.
Some stencil kits are easy to use. My neighbor's ten-year-old son used a stencil kit to create this flying witch.
Some stencil kits are easy to use. My neighbor's ten-year-old son used a stencil kit to create this flying witch.
Disney character stencil kits are very popular, although some are more complicated than others. I made a few mistakes with Mufasa, but you can only see them close up.
Disney character stencil kits are very popular, although some are more complicated than others. I made a few mistakes with Mufasa, but you can only see them close up.

Pumpkin Carving Kits

Paper Magic Group Pumpkin Carving Tool Kit, 9 Pieces
Paper Magic Group Pumpkin Carving Tool Kit, 9 Pieces

I like the variety of tools in this kit.

 

Scary and Creepy - Click on the thumbnails to see the larger photo.

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A simple pumpkin becomes a frightening monster in the hands of an expert carver. Photo shared on Flickr.This is both scary and creepy. Photo by Dreamland Apparel.Kidney-shaped eyes, nose, and mouth create a moaning jack-o-lanter anyone can do. Photo shared on Flickr.I like make my jack-o-lanterns scary with razor-sharp teeth and slanted eyes.Expert carvers can create frightening portraits like this one of Jack Nicholson from the Shining. Photo from SOCYBETRY.Professional pumpkin carver, Ray Villafave, went one step beyond the jack-o-lantern by sculpting this terrifying zombie pumpkin.
A simple pumpkin becomes a frightening monster in the hands of an expert carver. Photo shared on Flickr.
A simple pumpkin becomes a frightening monster in the hands of an expert carver. Photo shared on Flickr.
This is both scary and creepy. Photo by Dreamland Apparel.
This is both scary and creepy. Photo by Dreamland Apparel.
Kidney-shaped eyes, nose, and mouth create a moaning jack-o-lanter anyone can do. Photo shared on Flickr.
Kidney-shaped eyes, nose, and mouth create a moaning jack-o-lanter anyone can do. Photo shared on Flickr.
I like make my jack-o-lanterns scary with razor-sharp teeth and slanted eyes.
I like make my jack-o-lanterns scary with razor-sharp teeth and slanted eyes.
Expert carvers can create frightening portraits like this one of Jack Nicholson from the Shining. Photo from SOCYBETRY.
Expert carvers can create frightening portraits like this one of Jack Nicholson from the Shining. Photo from SOCYBETRY.
Professional pumpkin carver, Ray Villafave, went one step beyond the jack-o-lantern by sculpting this terrifying zombie pumpkin.
Professional pumpkin carver, Ray Villafave, went one step beyond the jack-o-lantern by sculpting this terrifying zombie pumpkin.
Fun Central U4 1.5" Mini Glow Sticks - Orange 50ct
Fun Central U4 1.5" Mini Glow Sticks - Orange 50ct

I find that glow sticks add some funky fun to my jack-o-lanterns.

 
Fun Central U3 1.5" Mini Glow Sticks - Green 50ct
Fun Central U3 1.5" Mini Glow Sticks - Green 50ct

I was the headless horseman once and I used the green glowsticks in my pumpkin to make it look toxic.

 

This lovely jack-o-lantern was made using the scraping technique. Photo shared on Flickr.

This lovely jack-o-lantern was made using the scraping technique. Photo shared on Flickr.
This lovely jack-o-lantern was made using the scraping technique. Photo shared on Flickr.

Paint Your Pumpkin

Pumpkin Painting
Pumpkin Painting

Learn how to paint fabulous pumpkins.

 
Paint A Pumpkin Witch 9 Piece Set
Paint A Pumpkin Witch 9 Piece Set

Everything you need to make a Pumpkin Witch.

 

To Carve or Not To Carve

Do you prefer carving your pumpkin or painting it?

Elegantly Beautiful - Click on the thumbnails to see the large photo.

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Create a leaf design using painting stencils. This photo was shared on Flickr.Dog portrait jack-o-lanterns are very popular. Photo from welcomepup.An exceptional carousel jack-o-lantern. This photo was shared on Flickr.This pumpkin isn't a jack-o-lantern, but it is such a lovely carving I had to include it. This photo was shared on Flickr.An amazing haunted house jack-o-lantern. This photo was shared on Flickr.
Create a leaf design using painting stencils. This photo was shared on Flickr.
Create a leaf design using painting stencils. This photo was shared on Flickr.
Dog portrait jack-o-lanterns are very popular. Photo from welcomepup.
Dog portrait jack-o-lanterns are very popular. Photo from welcomepup.
An exceptional carousel jack-o-lantern. This photo was shared on Flickr.
An exceptional carousel jack-o-lantern. This photo was shared on Flickr.
This pumpkin isn't a jack-o-lantern, but it is such a lovely carving I had to include it. This photo was shared on Flickr.
This pumpkin isn't a jack-o-lantern, but it is such a lovely carving I had to include it. This photo was shared on Flickr.
An amazing haunted house jack-o-lantern. This photo was shared on Flickr.
An amazing haunted house jack-o-lantern. This photo was shared on Flickr.

Carve Like a Pro

Play With Your Pumpkins
Play With Your Pumpkins

Many easy to do carvings.

 

Funny Frites - Click on the thumbnails to see the large photo.

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Jack-O-Lanterns don't have to be scary. Funny faces are great! Photo from hobbycentral.YellowPelow had this photo of a pumpkin-eating monster jack-o-lantern on their blog. I love the use of gourds for eyes.This weeping jack-o-lantern can be funny or frightning depending on your point of view. Photo from sodahead.Melting Witch jack-o-lantern. Very clever. This photo was shared on Photobucket.
Jack-O-Lanterns don't have to be scary. Funny faces are great! Photo from hobbycentral.
Jack-O-Lanterns don't have to be scary. Funny faces are great! Photo from hobbycentral.
YellowPelow had this photo of a pumpkin-eating monster jack-o-lantern on their blog. I love the use of gourds for eyes.
YellowPelow had this photo of a pumpkin-eating monster jack-o-lantern on their blog. I love the use of gourds for eyes.
This weeping jack-o-lantern can be funny or frightning depending on your point of view. Photo from sodahead.
This weeping jack-o-lantern can be funny or frightning depending on your point of view. Photo from sodahead.
Melting Witch jack-o-lantern. Very clever. This photo was shared on Photobucket.
Melting Witch jack-o-lantern. Very clever. This photo was shared on Photobucket.

Just Plain Weird-No offense to the carvers. - Click on the thumbnails to see the large photo.

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So weird I love it. Photo from tinkatolli.Professional pumpkin carver, Ed Moody sculpted this very weird double face jack-o-lantern. Photo by Ed Moody.More weirdness. The artist must have needed a lot of time to create this one. Photo by custommugs.Brains! Photo by custommugs.Creepy and weird. Photo by badderhomesand gardens.Parasite jack-o-lantern. Just too weird for words. Photo was shared on Photobucket.
So weird I love it. Photo from tinkatolli.
So weird I love it. Photo from tinkatolli.
Professional pumpkin carver, Ed Moody sculpted this very weird double face jack-o-lantern. Photo by Ed Moody.
Professional pumpkin carver, Ed Moody sculpted this very weird double face jack-o-lantern. Photo by Ed Moody.
More weirdness. The artist must have needed a lot of time to create this one. Photo by custommugs.
More weirdness. The artist must have needed a lot of time to create this one. Photo by custommugs.
Brains! Photo by custommugs.
Brains! Photo by custommugs.
Creepy and weird. Photo by badderhomesand gardens.
Creepy and weird. Photo by badderhomesand gardens.
Parasite jack-o-lantern. Just too weird for words. Photo was shared on Photobucket.
Parasite jack-o-lantern. Just too weird for words. Photo was shared on Photobucket.

Share Your Jack-o-lantern favorites

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    • Nicoinstitches profile image

      Nico 4 years ago from Ottawa, ON

      love the pumpkin eating jack o lantern

    • Rhonda Lytle profile image

      Rhonda Lytle 4 years ago from Deep in the heart of Dixie

      The zombie pumpkin is such a work of art, many of them are. It's a talent I admire but simply don't have.

    • Mary Stephenson profile image

      Mary Stephenson 4 years ago from California

      I really like the carousel and the floral ones. The beautiful ones are my favorite, don't like the creepy ones. Like them when they are so unique.

    • LoriBeninger profile image

      LoriBeninger 5 years ago

      I especially liked the pumpkin on your introduction photo. PInned it!

    • profile image

      DebMartin 5 years ago

      I love the one with the scull emerging from the broken head.

    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 5 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      I like the Darth Vader or the witch on the broomstick

    • Nightcat profile image

      Nightcat 5 years ago

      Lovely pumpkin! Blessed!

    • vineliner57 profile image

      Hal Gall 5 years ago from Bloomington, IN

      Great looking Darth Vader pattern!

    • Fox Music profile image

      Fox Music 5 years ago

      Thank you for this remarkable lens "Pumpkin Jack-O-Lanterns: Spooky, Elegant, and Just Plain Weird" - lots of great ideas