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How to Make a Pretty Fretwork Pumpkin

Looking for a new pumpkin-carving technique? Requiring just two different-sized drill bits, this sculptural and intricate design is easier to create than you may think.

Layla Palmer, The Lettered Cottage
Pierced Pumpkin Halloween Decoration

Materials Needed:

  • pumpkin
  • household drill
  • large and small drill bits
  • sharp knife or pumpkin saw
  • large serving spoon
  • newspaper
  • painter's tape
  • paper towels
  • Q-tips
  • votive holder and votive or LED candle

Empty Out Pumpkin

Place pumpkin on several layers of newspaper. Using a kitchen knife or pumpkin saw, cut a large hole in the pumpkin's bottom. Use a serving spoon to remove all pumpkin flesh and seeds from inside.

Tip: Save the seeds to toast later for a healthy snack.

Hollow Out Pumpkin

Apply Tape

Attach a piece of painter's tape around the center of the pumpkin. Apply another row of painter's tape approximately 2 inches above the first piece of painter's tape.

  • Mark Pumpkin for Drilling
  • Tape Pumpkin Before Drilling

Drill Holes Using Large Bit

Use a large drill bit to drill holes into the pumpkin just under the top piece of painter's tape. Drill another row of large holes all the way around the pumpkin, just above the bottom piece of painter's tape. Remove both pieces of tape and drill a third row of large holes directly above the top row of holes.

  • Halloween Pierced Pumpkin
  • Drilling the Pumpkin
  • Drill Your Pumpkin

Drill Holes Using Small Bit

Replace the large drill bit with a much smaller one and proceed to drill smaller holes in between and above each of the large ones, all the way around the pumpkin. Drill one last row of small holes below the bottom row of large ones. The smaller holes should fall directly in between and above or below each of the larger holes.

  • Drill Smaller Holes into Pumpkin
  • Halloween Pierced Pumpkin
  • Halloween Drilled Pumpkin

Clean Up and Add Candle

Use a paper towel and Q-tips to remove excess pumpkin flesh and skin from drilled holes, then place the pumpkin over the top of a lit or LED votive candle.

Pierced Halloween Pumpkin
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