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Pumpkin Creatures

Martha Stewart Living, October 2003

Mischievous spirits, lacking bodies of their own, have been known to set up house inside scooped-out pumpkins and gourds. You can offer help by arranging these Halloween standbys into animal shapes -- all the better for playful souls to occupy (plus, you'll get pumpkin creatures to adorn the front porch).

Raccoons
Snakes
Spiders
Alligators
Porcupines
Cats
Owls

First, closely examine pumpkins and gourds at a farm or grocery store. (See Picking Pumpkins for advice on choosing great gourds.) Is there one that's plump like a cat's tummy? Long like an alligator's snout?

Gather parts for the animal you'd like to make, and be creative: Pumpkins don't have to sit with their stems on top, for example. One turned upside down might make a good head; a gourd on its side, a nice nose. Carve features with tools from around your house or from a crafts store, then join the parts with toothpicks. When your animal is ready, set it aglow with white holiday lights.

Picking Pumpkins
Tools and Techniques