Our REALTORS® often hear buyers say one of the best things about getting your own home is customizing and decorating it any way you like. That includes decorating for your favorite holiday. A jack-o'-lantern on the porch or as a part of other Halloween decorations in your yard is a fun way to express your creativity. It's also the perfect fall decoration for Mansfield homes for sale. They're festive without going overboard, and once they're cut, they don't last long. Whether you're looking to make a classic simple design, or go next level and carve the best one on the block, these five tips can help.
- Pick a quality pumpkin. Start with a pumpkin that is in good shape and not split, withering, or starting to go bad. Your pumpkin should be firm, free of soft spots, and relatively smooth and blemish-free on at least one side, so it has a good "face" and is easier to carve. The stem should also be intact. Since most people pick out their pumpkins in advance, you want the freshest possible.
- Think about your design. You can draw one directly on the pumpkin freehand if you have something in mind. If you're looking for a pattern, there are many available online and in stores. And you're sure to find inspirational photos on many websites.
- Use the right tools. You can use a regular kitchen knife or those double-sided pumpkin carving knives sold in stores this time of year. More than one is a good idea, since cutting details or curves is often easier with a smaller knife. You can also use a drill for more unique designs such as text or polka dots. Additionally, you'll need a large spoon to scoop out the pumpkin. You'll want a bowl or newspaper to hold the pulp and seeds. Paper towels are also useful to dry the pumpkin afterward, so it's easier to handle.
- The carving part. Protect your work surface. Start with the cut you'll need to empty the pumpkin. Either cut around the stem on the top or cut out the bottom. On the top, you'll need to make an angled cut to prevent the stem and top piece from falling inside the pumpkin. If you're going around the bottom, that piece of pumpkin will be removed so that you can place the pumpkin over the candle. You can draw the design on your pumpkin or cut freehand. Start cutting your design with the knife or drill. To get a shadow effect, don't cut all the way through. Only remove the outer pumpkin skin and a little of the inside layer.
- Add the candle. You can use a traditional candle or a flameless (LED) candle. One in a jar or votive is a good option to avoid tipping. The pumpkin should sit securely on a flat surface where the candle can't catch anything if it tips. If you want to put the jack-o'-lantern on stairs or a sidewalk, a flameless candle is a safer option.
Halloween décor for your new home can be loads of fun. Even if you don't want to go all out, a classic jack o' lantern is the perfect seasonal touch.
If you've been thinking about how nice it would be to celebrate upcoming fall and winter holidays in a new home, Haring Realty can help you buy or sell your home in the Mansfield area. Contact us today to find out what we can do for you.