Pumpkin Carving: The Essential Tools For Carving A Great Jack O' Lantern

Pumpkin carving is good, safe fun for kids and parents if you know the essential tools you'll need to make a great Halloween jack-o-lantern.

Halloween decorations are not complete until there a perfectly carved pumpkin is flickering fiercely and glowing ghoulishly on the front porch. Without the proper tools, carving an outstanding pumpkin can be a difficult task. Kitchen knives get the job done but they don't do the job well because most of them have blades that are just too big to accurately carve out the fine lines and curves of a detailed jack-o-lantern face. Not to mention, large kitchen knives are not exactly child-friendly tools. Aside form the size of the blade, the size of the handle might be harder for a child's hands to grip. Also, if you are planning to use a knife that is often used in the kitchen, its blade could be dull and a dull blade is a dangerous blade for both children and adults. A better alternative to kitchen knives is a pumpkin carving kit. These can be easily found at grocer stores, drug stores, Halloween super stores, and even in the holiday section of most bed and bath stores. These kits come with small tools designed with pumpkins that are easy for kids and parents to use.

If you plan to buy a pumpkin carving kit look for one that includes these tools: a 4-in-1 pumpkin carving and sculpting tool, a scraper, and a carving saw. If you don't need a kit and would prefer to buy items individually, look for the same items and buy the tools according to how you plan to carve the pumpkin.

The 4-in-1 carving and sculpting tool is an essential carving piece because of its versatility. The double edged toothed saw can be used for detailed carving. It can also be used to sculpt and smooth patterns onto the surface of a pumpkin. The small size of the blade on a pumpkin saw is perfect for carving details that kitchen knives with large blades simply can't maneuver.

If you don't plan to sculpt a pattern onto the outer surface of the pumpkin, then you can forego the 4-in-1 tool and just go for a pumpkin carving saw. The saw has teeth that make cutting easy as long as you remember to use it like it's a saw and not a knife. To properly use the saw, hold the saw at an angle and slowly saw back and forth instead of stabbing and slicing.

A pumpkin scraper is a must-have tool. It will help you clean all the seeds and goop out of the inside of the pumpkin with ease. Even better than that, the scraper shaves off layers of the inner wall to thin the pumpkin walls. When a jack-o-lantern has thin walls, put a lighted candle or light inside and the whole pumpkin will give off an eerie glow. Your pumpkin will look brighter from a distance and so it will be the envy of all the neighbors.

Some kits come with a lid-carving saw. If it is included, that's great, use it. Its flexible, toothed blade makes cutting a rounded lid easier. If you aren't buying a kit, you can skip it. The pumpkin carving saw listed above will work fine for cutting a lid.

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