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Spooky Silhouette Designs

An ink-coated silhouette is a sophisticated variation on pumpkin carving.




  • Pumpkin
  • Spooky silhouette template
  • Awl
  • Fine-tipped linoleum cutter
  • Wide-tipped linoleum cutter
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Brayer
  • Lino ink
  • Paintbrush


  1. Step 1

    Cut a hole in bottom of pumpkin, and hollow pumpkin until flesh is about 1/2 inch thick. Tape template to pumpkin. (Draw your own template or download ours and print. Enlarge or reduce to fit.)

  2. Step 2

    Use an awl to punch holes along the design. Remove template.

  3. Step 3

    With a fine-tipped linoleum cutter, carve outline and interior features of image, exposing flesh but not cutting all the way through. Draw a frame around design with a pen. Using a wide-tipped linoleum cutter, carve away rind inside frame and around design; cut 1/4 inch deep so uncarved area is in clear relief.

  4. Step 4

    Rub petroleum jelly on exposed flesh to repel ink drips and to slow decay. Coat a brayer with lino ink (see the Guide); carefully roll over design. Use a paintbrush to fill missed areas. If ink strays, cut away stain.

Martha Stewart Living, October 2006



Reviews (6)

  • craftycat1951 12 Oct, 2010

    use patio paint and a small foam brush...easy as pie

  • irisheyes60 9 Oct, 2010

    I wish they would make the templates as black outlines rather than all black. I used up almost all the ink in my printer when I printed these templates up. The photo of the cat looks like its just an outline so I thought they would print like that but they didn't. They are great pictures to use though.

  • danigirl82 24 Oct, 2008

    I thought about using a Sharpie as well. I wonder if that would turn out properly?

  • betsyrisch 23 Oct, 2008

    EASIER than the about a Sharpie permanent marker?

  • betsyrisch 23 Oct, 2008

    EASIER than the about a Sharpie permanent marker?

  • NorbieK 12 Oct, 2008

    awesome templates for window decor.
    I made silhouttes out of black cardstock and lined them with orange underneath. SPOOOOOKY!!!!