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Drilled "Galactic" Pumpkins

Make a big bang with a tumble of pumpkins studded like the starry bands of the Milky Way. For a magical display, these pumpkins were stacked haphazardly atop one another and filled the fireplace to the brim — and, that way, their speckled designs flow freely from one to the next.

milky way pumpkins

Photography: Ted Cavanaugh

Source: Martha Stewart Living, October 2017


  • Pumpkins
  • Battery-powered candles
  • Handheld electric drill with different-size bits
  • Keyhole saw
  • Scraping tool


  1. Hollow out each pumpkin: Turn a pumpkin on its side, and use a keyhole saw or knife to carve out a circular opening in the bottom. Make the opening large enough so your hand can fit comfortably through it. Use a scraping tool to remove the flesh and seeds, scraping away the pumpkin's inner wall until it's about 1/4 inch thick. Turn the pumpkin right side up.
  2. Punch clustered holes in each pumpkin using drill and two different-size bits. (Tip: Have fun with the placement of your planets and stars — random patterns have universal appeal.)
  3. Arrange pumpkins with a few uncarved gourds, tuck battery-powered candles inside, and imagine a galaxy far, far away.

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