These pumpkins were first brushed with flat white acrylic paint then stenciled using Country Living templates to create insect, spider and animal-print patterns with flat black paint for contrast. The effect is stunning!
Why not take a merchandiser's approach to your pumpkin displays? A large grouping of pumpkins of various sizes is a fun way to create impact. Here, the editors have carved "trick-or-treat" on the smaller pumpkins and carved traditional Jack-o-Lantern faces on the two larger pumpkins in the foreground. It's all set up on the porch with a rustic wire plant stand surrounded by dried corn stalks, potted orange mums and artificial crows.
Taking cues from your china patterns is a great way to elevate your table setting with carved pumpkins. The thorn pattern on this plate is exaggerated and enhanced with the addition of a thorny twig and a small Blue Hubbard carved with the same prickly pattern.
Editor Christina Lane also borrowed patterns from her china and the wood grains on her flooring to decorate her pumpkin, which looks lovely in faux-bois swirls cut out of the rind. Nestled next to an old oak tree on a carpet of leaves, it sets a festive but understated mood for the season.
This gold and black tableau is a beautiful arrangement: modern, elegant and whimsical! Using sentcils, the artist gives each pumpkin its own personality, from spider webs to polka-dots to checkers to stripes. It's all set up on a three-tier wooden plant painted black, accented by berry branches and painted tin stars.
For more ideas, see Country Living's book of pumpkin and gourd crafts called Pumpkin Chic.