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Carve an Angry Pumpkin

This Halloween, carve a jack-o’-lantern with a standout personality—like this angry pumpkin and its jagged mouth. Our custom templates make it easy to mix and match features to give your pumpkin whatever personality you wish. Just follow the easy step-by-step instructions.

Angry pumpkin sitting on outdoor chair as Halloween decoration.

Project Overview

Skill Level


Estimated Time

A few hours

Estimated Cost


Tools & Materials


  • Crafts knife
  • Paring knife
  • Scoop
  • Dremel rotary tool
  • Drill and bit set


  • Pumpkin
  • Painter’s tape

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.

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Project Resources


Carving pumpkins into jack-o’-lanterns is a rewarding way to bring the family together while showing off your creativity. With a minimal investment of time and money, you can create unique Halloween decorations that will delight young and old alike. Download our free pumpkin carving patterns to create this classic angry pumpkin design.

How to Carve an Angry Pumpkin

Step 1

Scooping out inside of pumpkin with lid.

Cut the top off a pumpkin, making a hole large enough to slide a hand through. Use the lid from a peanut butter or mayonnaise jar to scoop out the inside of the pumpkin. Scrape the inside walls carefully, removing more flesh on the side where the face will go. This will make carving easier.

Good to Know

If the carving pattern might interfere with the top of the pumpkin, you can make the entry hole in the bottom or back instead.

Step 2

Scoring eyes on pumpkin through template.

Download Pumpkin Face Patterns and trim excess paper from around the selected pattern. Cut slits along the edges to help the pattern lay flat, then use painter’s tape to adhere the paper to the pumpkin. Score the face of the pumpkin by tracing the outline of the template with a crafts knife.

Step 3

Drilling holes through eyes in pumpkin.

Remove the template and place the pumpkin in a bowl for stability. Drill a small pilot hole for each eye before enlarging the hole with a 3/8-inch drill bit.

Good to Know

The pilot holes safeguard the integrity of the pumpkin walls when using a large drill bit.

Step 4

Scraping rind away from surface of pumpkin eye.

After carving the eyes with a crafts or paring knife, place a paring knife almost flat against the pumpkin surface. Scrape gently, starting from the score mark, to peel the pumpkin skin away.

Good to Know

You can peel all the way for a clean look or leave portions of rind for a scarier effect.

Step 5

Deepening the score marks on pumpkin mouth.

Use a crafts knife to carve the corners of the mouth, making multiple shallow passes rather than one deep cut.

Good to Know

A crafts knife is recommended for tight spaces, acute angles and intricate cutting.

Step 6

Plunging paring knife into pumpkin mouth.

Use a paring knife to carve individual teeth. Plunge the knife in at one point, then plunge it again at a perpendicular angle.

Good to Know

A straight paring knife is good for cutting straight lines or broad curves. A curved paring knife is easier to use on corners. The thinner the blade, the better.

Step 7

Pushing excess portion of mouth from inside pumpkin.

Slice the excess portion of mouth surrounding teeth into several chunks to avoid breaking a tooth during removal. Press from inside the pumpkin to gently dislodge excess portions of the mouth without disturbing the teeth.

Have a frightfully good time carving pumpkins this Halloween using our free pumpkin stencils and following our easy steps!


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