Pumpkin Carving Tips To Make Them Last Until Halloween
One of my favourite Halloween traditions is carving pumpkins! I love to place them on the porch and light them up at night. The only problem is, they never seem to last until Halloween. They usually end up all mushy after just a few weeks and I’m an early decorator! But, I’ve found some tips that will make your pumpkins last longer after they’ve been carved, so you can enjoy the spooky season a little longer!
Creating your own pumpkin design is fairly easy. You can come up with your own designs, or you can look online for different templates if you want something a little more difficult and spooky. But, even the perfect design will fail if you don’t follow good pumpkin carving techniques. Here are some tips to help you create a Halloween work of art.
Find The Right Pumpkin
Of course, the perfect jack-o-lantern starts with the perfect pumpkin. Find one that is large enough and the proper shape to hold your design ideas. You should also inspect the pumpkin for any bruising or defects that could cause it to deteriorate faster once you have taken it home.
Make Sure The Pumpkin Is Thoroughly Cleaned Out
The start of any great jack-o-lantern begins with scooping out all of the seeds and mess that is inside. You should also take it a step further!
Once the seeds have been removed, continue to scrape the inside until you have about a quarter of an inch of rind left. A thinner pumpkin is easier to carve – especially if you are hoping to successfully do fine detailing in your carving.
Thin walls will also help your pumpkin keep longer after it is carved. They may make it more fragile, however, so use caution when moving your creation.
Try Cutting The Bottom Off Instead Of The Top!
Most people cut the top stem off in order to clean out the pumpkin. But we’ve been doing it wrong! When you cut the top, it weakens that area of the pumpkin and causes it to sag! Try cutting the bottom open in order to clean it out!
Pumpkins Like It Cool
From the time you bring your pumpkin home from the patch until it is time to throw it out you will want to keep it in a cool, dark area. If it is still warm where you live in October, store your pumpkin inside during the daytime.
Always avoid sunlight during the day. If your pumpkin gets warm, it will start to rot quickly. Placing your pumpkin on the porch only in the evenings and taking it inside during the day time can help it to last longer.
Remember To Moisturize
Not you – the pumpkin! Rubbing petroleum jelly or olive oil on the cut surfaces of the pumpkin will help keep your pumpkin from drying out as quickly, which will cause it to lose its shape.
Only do the cut edges, not the inside, especially if you plan on using a candle as it is a fire hazard.
Allow Your Pumpkin To Breath
When carving your pumpkin, place a small notch or hole on top. That way, when you place the candle inside, the smoke and heat have a way to escape. Otherwise, the pumpkin may start to cook, which will cause your jack-o-lantern to deteriorate more quickly.
Once you have found the perfect pumpkin to create your jack-o-lantern, follow these simple steps to keep it looking spooky until Halloween!