Pumpkins and Halloween go together like Ash and Pikachu. If you’re
planning on celebrating the most macabre of holidays, odds are you’ve got some
pumpkin carving in your future. And if you also happen to be a Pokémon fan, you
can download and print one of more than 70 free Pokémon Halloween stencils. From
fan favorites and cuties like Eevee and Pikachu to Ghost types that complement
the Halloween aesthetic like Gengar, Litwick, and Pumpkaboo, there’s a Pokémon
stencil for everyone!
But after you’ve found your favorite Pokémon and printed your stencils, what’s your next step?
Whether you’re carving or decorating, whatever your skill level,
and however limited or extensive your tools and supplies might be, we’ve
assembled some tips and tricks to make the most of your pumpkin carving
experience. (Kids, be sure to ask your parents for help when carving your
pumpkins!) We can’t guarantee professional results, but if we can help you have
more fun and empower you to be more creative, we’ll call that a win.
This part of the process can be as simple or complicated as you
want. Whether you’re growing your own pumpkins, making a day trip to a pumpkin patch,
or hitting the nearby grocery store, you should have plenty of pumpkins to
choose from. Pumpkins, like Pokémon, come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, so
if you know which Pokémon you want to carve, you can pick your pumpkin
A proper pumpkin patch will have any number of pumpkins varieties
to choose from. If they’re not labeled, just ask an employee to help sort them
out. A classic orange type like a Harvest Moon or a Jumpin’ Jack might be a perfect
fit for Rotom or Charizard—while a more exotic variety like Queensland Blue or
Blue Lakota would be great for Sobble. With colors potentially ranging from
ghostly white to vivid red and zombie green, you can find a pumpkin to match
just about any Pokémon.
The best thing about pumpkin carving is that there are no
rules—beyond, of course, utilizing proper safety protocols. If you like carving
but want to try something different or more complex this year, it might be time
to look beyond the pumpkin knife to get creative with your tools. There’s
no rule that limits you to the toolkit you purchased at your neighborhood
grocery store. Wood carving chisels can be particularly useful, allowing you to
modify the width and depth of each stroke, and chisels are usually safer and
easier to wield than a knife. A basic wood carving tool set will set you back
anywhere from $7 to $50 or so and is available from just about any crafts or
If you want to add some extra power to the equation, using a
drill to carve your pumpkin can decrease carve time. If you’ve never used a
drill before or aren’t comfortable using one, it might be best to stick with
other tools. But if you are comfortable utilizing a drill, have access to a
diverse range of drill bit sizes, and want to try something new, why not give
it a try? If you are using a drill, to preserve your pumpkin’s structural
integrity, it’s best to start drilling at the center of your design and work
outward. You’ll want to brace your pumpkin before you begin drilling and start
slowly to give yourself time to acclimate to the process.
Whatever tools you use, contouring the inside of the pumpkin
is essential to effective carving. It will be much easier to achieve a finer
level of detail if you take the time at the beginning of the process to scrape
away excess flesh from the pumpkin’s interior while you’re removing the seeds
and viscera. Utilizing the pumpkin scoop tool provided in most carving kits,
thin out the interior of the pumpkin on the side you plan on carving. This
might seem tedious, but it will improve the overall outcome of your carve. If
you’re worried about removing too much skin from the interior, scrape out a
modest amount and start carving before grabbing the scoop and removing more.
This will also ensure that the light inside your pumpkin shines as brightly as
Designing a pumpkin using one the Pokémon stencils is pretty
easy. First, tape the stencil snug against the pumpkin. To ensure a close fit,
cut away as much excess paper from the stencil before you begin taping. Then,
punch small holes with a thumbtack or the punch tool available in your pumpkin
carving kit to make small marks indicating where you should cut. Remember,
you’re cutting out the black portions of the stencil. Finally, remove the
stencil and get to work carving out along the lines you made. Keep the stencil
nearby so you can use it as a reference for which sections should be carved and
which should remain.
Whichever stencil you choose to work with, it’s important to
remember that a stencil is merely another tool. There may be occasions when
modifying the stencil will result in a better carve. For example, some stencils
have extremely thin lines that would be difficult for anyone but an expert to
follow. When you’re transferring your stencil onto your pumpkin, feel free to
thicken those lines to make the carving process easier. You can also creatively
modify the stencil, adding your own embellishments along the way.
The tail on the Silicobra stencil could extend around the
pumpkin by carving a thin line. Scorbunny would look great with some flames on
other sides of the pumpkin. Your Grookey pumpkin would look cool with leaves
falling around the pumpkin, which could be easily achieved if you happen to
have any leaf-shaped cookie cutters around the house. These personal details
will help differentiate your pumpkin from everyone else’s and can be fun to
incorporate into your carve.
If you want to get into the Halloween spirit but aren’t a
fan of sharp objects, there are plenty of opportunities to decorate a pumpkin
without carving. Best of all, you can still use our Pokémon stencils to create
something scary or adorable depending on your preference.
Glow-in-the-dark puff paint offers an easy and fun
decorating solution while giving your pumpkin a nice, healthy Halloween glow at
night. If you choose this option, you’ll still want a small tool to punch holes
in the pumpkin like described above. One nice thing about paint is that you
don’t have to worry about the pumpkin’s structural integrity, so feel free to
get as wild and creative as you want with your paint.
Of course, other types of paint are also an option. From
acrylic paint to an egg tempera option that will still allow you to compost
your pumpkin, there are plenty of choices. If you’re choosing to paint your
pumpkin, be sure to check the weather forecast as not all paints are
And you’re not limited to paint only! You can use stencils,
stamps, rhinestones, melted crayons, and just about any crafting material imaginable
to style your pumpkin. If you want to work with a particular material but
aren’t sure how to get started, odds are you can find an internet tutorial with
step-by-step instructions. And if you’re feeling bold, you can always just wing
it. Of course, if you’re planning on going that route, you might consider
buying a spare pumpkin or two.
Just remember that the primary goal of pumpkin carving is to
have fun, so enjoy the process, stay safe while carving, and don’t forget to
share your Pokémon pumpkin using #PokemonHalloween on social media!