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Weekly Gardening Tips for Your Area


Leaf-Carved Pumpkin Lanterns

Martha Stewart
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Trick-or-treaters and Halloween guests should feel more welcome than wary ascending a staircase lit up with leaf-carved pumpkin lanterns. The pumpkins’ motifs are produced using a variety of basic carving techniques. The resulting patterns are as varied as fallen leaves, which provide the only templates you’ll need.

Tools and Materials

  • Fallen leaves
  • Pumpkins
  • Hole cutters
  • Tape
  • Grease pencil
  • Linoleum cutterĀ or long miniature saw


1. Cut a hole in the pumpkin’s top or bottom, and scoop out the insides. Tape leaves to pumpkin and trace around each with a grease pencil; remove leaves.

2. Instead of cutting out the entire leaf shape, use a linoleum cutter with a narrow blade to peel away the rind and expose the flesh, producing decorative motifs or realistic “veins.”

3. Alternatively, cut out the entire leaf shape. Using a long miniature saw, cut out part of the leaf to make thin details, such as veins. Reposition the embellished leaf, letting it protrude slightly.

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