Halloween Pumpkin Carving: 9 Free Templates + Tutorials

by Kristiyana

Whether pumpkin faces or fall motifs: pumpkin carving is simply part of the preparations for Halloween. With the provided 9 free templates and easy tutorials, fun Halloween pumpkin carving is guaranteed!

Halloween Pumpkin Carving with Free Templates: A Quick & Easy Process

jack o lantern for halloween crafting instructions

Pumpkin season begins for my family in mid-September. Whether a door wreath with decorative pumpkins or a warm pumpkin soup: the fruit vegetables are a welcome, versatile guest with us. We also like carving pumpkins and turning them into lanterns for Halloween.

To ensure that the pumpkins last a long time and that carving is quick and uncomplicated, I have a few tricks up my sleeve:

how to carve pumpkins tips instructions

  • I always wash the pumpkin first with liquid soap and dry it with a cloth – this will kill the bacteria on the surface and the lantern will stay fresher longer.
  • Then I cut out the bottom of the pumpkin with a sharp carving knife, holding the knife at an angle. Cutting the stem first instead can compromise the pumpkin’s structure.
  • I then take an ice cream spoon and hollow it out. I try to completely remove the pumpkin flesh, including the seeds, otherwise it attracts insects.
  • After, I carefully wipe the pumpkin and put it in the cold overnight.
  • The carving can start the next day. For this purpose, I use a potter’s knife – so I can work more precisely than with a cutter knife.

How to Carve Out Frankenstein in Your Pumpkin?

frankenstein carving pumpkin lantern for halloween crafts

His story was published more than 200 years ago, and Mary Shelley’s book has been a true classic ever since. We remember it, especially at Halloween, and my niece often wishes for a Frankenstein lantern. Luckily, the face can be carved without much effort. You need the following materials and accessories:


  • Hokkaido pumpkin (medium size)
  • Pottery knife or cutter knife
  • Pin for a pin board
  • LED candle(s)
  • TESA tape
  • Template

frankenstein lantern carving template for halloween

I proceed as follows when carving:

  1. First, I choose a simple template that I adjust to the size of the pumpkin and reduce or enlarge it accordingly.
  2. Then I print it out, take scotch tape and stick it to the pumpkin.
  3. I take a pin and then pierce the motif.
  4. After, you can start carving.

Easy Halloween Pumpkin Carving for Children

pumpkin face carving motives for lantern craft for children

Children can also carve easy motifs together with their parents. The next pumpkin face consists only of eyes and a mouth. For an optimal effect, choose a Jack O’Lantern pumpkin. As the name suggests, it is a carving pumpkin that has a green to orange color depending on the degree of ripeness. By the way, there are special carving sets for children. Although they are intended for wood carving, they are great for pumpkin carving.

halloween pumpkin carving free face template

How to carve the pumpkin:

  1. Print the template and cut out the mouth and eyes. Then transfer the template to the pumpkin.
  2. Carve the pumpkin, and your children can paint the eyes.

Also read: Cute Halloween Crafts for Kids: 6 Easy Ideas for a Festive Mood

Halloween Pumpkin Carving and Painting

free template for pumpkin carving and painting

It doesn’t necessarily have to be a pumpkin face – other motifs can also decorate your Halloween lantern. The next craft idea combines carving and painting pumpkins. The end result is cool lanterns that can welcome your guests at the entrance of the house.

free template for halloween pumpkin lantern for carving and painting

Simply print the free templates, cut them out and transfer them to a pumpkin. Carve out windows, and paint the houses black with acrylic paint. All done!

.Also read: How to Make Halloween Bag for Treats? 3 Easy Last-Minute Ideas

How to Make Cute Pumpkin Lanterns & Decorate Them?

halloween carved pumpkins with fake mice

For the next idea, in addition to a pumpkin, you will also need plastic rats or mice. Luckily, there are plenty of mouse decorations sold for Halloween. I have a little niece and therefore always choose a non-scary option. Then I carve a pumpkin face at home, make a few additional holes and arrange the mouse figures.

halloween carving pumpkin faces jack o lantern free template

Creating a pumpkin face is not difficult at all. To make the Jack O’Lantern look scary, carve triangles for eyes. However, if you want him to seem friendly and sweet, then opt for round eyes. A crescent-shaped mouth, a small nose and carved eyebrows – and the pumpkin face is ready!

Carving Bee Motifs Into Pumpkins

carving pumpkins with bee motifs

Surprise the children and family with a fall motif. Fall leaves, sunflowers and other natural treasures are quite complicated to carve. Personally, I prefer simple designs that don’t take up too much time. Ultimately, designing a lantern should be fun. However, if it takes longer than an hour, your children will quickly lose interest, and you will have to carve the pumpkins alone.

Read also: Halloween Pumpkin is Molding: How to Prevent Carving Mistakes and Keep Your Jack-o’-lantern Fresh!
free bee template for halloween

Carving a bee is not difficult and the end result is fascinating. It looks best if you use a small Hokkaido pumpkin or a medium-sized spaghetti squash (weight approx. 1 kg). Reduce the size of the template, print it out and attach it to the pumpkin with Scotch tape. Then repeat the contours and remove the template. Now you can start carving.

honeycomb motifs on lantern with free template

If you already have some experience, you can opt for a honeycomb pattern. With a little skill and patience, a beautiful lantern can be created after an hour.

Other Free & Simple Templates for Pumpkin Carving

vampire dracula lantern craft for halloween

A cute vampire, an adorable ghost or the classic Jack O’Lantern with teeth and evil eyes: there are numerous motifs that you can carve.

template for jack o lantern pumpkin face

Be inspired by the suggestions in this article, try out different templates and make several lanterns for the entrance of your house, the balcony or the garden table.

simple halloween lantern crafting instructions and ideas

Also read: How to Reuse Pumpkin After Halloween? Check Out 4 Remarkable Ideas on Tricks and Treats!

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