I’m not sure I’m ready for Abby (15 months), or even Wyndham (3 years on November 15) to be wielding a knife yet for pumpkin carving. Even those kid friendly ones. Pretty sure they’d end up more frustrated than anything else…carving through the thick, hard flesh of a pumpkin requires some strength and muscle control beyond their years.
Besides, even if Wyndham (definitely not Abby) were ready for some carving this year – with all of these amazing carve-free ideas and instructions flying around the Internet, I’ve decided to keep things super toddler-friendly. Besides, there will still be a couple of carved pumpkins that the mister and I hack up, so the kiddos will have plenty of opportunities to dig in and pull out all of those guts and enjoy the glow and some sweet and salty toasted seeds after. I’m not completely void of tradition people.
Check out these awesome carve-free ideas and tell me I haven’t converted you!
Finger painting ahoy! This one requires you to prep the first few steps, but it's a neat project that ends up looking awesome!
Get the full instructions here at Young House Love
Not-So Little Liars
Again, some prep time is involved here, but once they are cleaned out and you've carved out some eyes, they are ready for your little ones to paint and get busy with. I might go so far as to letting them add stickers and yarn coming out of the top for hair, or hay...the key is to introduce them to creative ideas to get their little imaginations flowing! They'll be sure to come up with a few of their own too. It's all about setting the stage.
See the instructions on Martha Stewart
Awesome and easy idea! The best part about this is that your toddler can change it up whenever they want.
See more on Small & Friendly
Not to be confused with bedazzled. *Deep Shudder*
See the tutorial on Mr. Kate
Stripes. They Are Everywhere.
They have seemingly taken over the world with their supreme special stripey-ness. Not even the pumpkins are safe.
Find out how on All You
Again With The Mustaches
Everywhere you see stripes, a mustache (or two or three), is not far off.
Get the instructions over on Faboolous
Mr. Pumpkin Head
Have a Mr. Potato Head kicking around? We do. This is SO happening tonight when the kiddos get home. I like easy.
Find out how on Zakka Life
Oh, that Martha Stewart. Always coming up with clever ideas.
Instructions via Martha Stewart
Mess-free fun right here.
Find out how on All You
Mix & Match Silly Faces
This screams toddler-friendly, mess-free. You're welcome.
Instructions via Make & Takes
For The Fearless
We may not like cleaning up the mess from toddler painting sessions, but they LOVE these sorts of art activities.
As seen on Crosbie Crew
Oh, So Steampunk
Obviously, the pre-drilling is done by a parent; the handling of hardware should be highly supervised. Leave it to a dude to come up with this one. Still, it's pretty neat, especially for the older kiddos.
Instructions can be found on Mr. Handyman
More Mess-Free! You Love Me!
Puffy Paint Magic
Clearly, this looks a little advanced. Which is not to say that a toddler could not create his own. They may not look like these....but I love the idea of making some with your little ones. Perhaps smaller ones, designated 1 for each family members initial! A fun family activity.
See step-by-step instructions on Young House Love
I know. I can barely control myself. Sorry, Carlos. At any rate...this is another fun one to do with your toddler. They'll be quite pleased with the end result, I promise.
Instructions via All You
Loving how easy and brilliant this idea is. I can't wait to try some of these out with my munchkins. Doesn't take much to get me going, clearly.
As seen on Budget Wise Home
Nature Walk + Decoupage =
Good time on the homestead. You might actually want to put this on your table as a centerpiece.
Idea via Midwest Living
Cat Candy Container
I'm seriously considering doing either this one or the earlier marshmallow mouthed witchy pumpkin you saw earlier. I have a glass cookie jar and some sugar-free maple pumpkin muffins in the oven as I type. Oh, how homebody of me. The daily joy that will shine out of my childrens' faces each day as they ask for a muffin is well worth my demise.
Get the tutorial over on Martha Stewart
Mod Toddler Art
This one is for the more avid (anal) home decor lover out there. Give your child one color of paint, like white - if you want to be oh-so-achingly-hip, and let them have at it after you've taped out whatever pattern you want.
Idea as seen on Petit Elefant
Melted Crayon Gourds
More easy awesomeness. Grab some dollar store crayons (or all of those broken ones), a gourd or pumpkin, a hairdryer and let your child get to it. Obviously line your work-surface with newspaper. Like a few layers. Hot wax my friends, hot wax.
See the instructions and video on Mr. Kate
Who knew dried citrus rinds could come in so handy?
Find out how on Spoonful
Not-So Spookie Bats
My little guy, in particular, is a very sensitive dude. He'll have none of this scary Halloween business. We literally have to sing and dance about sunshine and rainbows (while covering his eyes), when passing Dark Lord bedecked homes, or else that trick or treating thing is GAME-OVER.
Find the instructions on Spoonful
The Cutest Butterfly
A quick and easy craft for all of those little mini pumpkins you have kicking around. Or is that just me?
Learn more on Spoonful
Nerdly amounts of cute, right?
As seen on Spoonful
More Great Things on Parenting
If you really have your heart set on pumpkin carving, these amazing templates and carving kits from Target are the bomb-diggs. Very easy on the pocketbook too.
Top Image (of children with pumpkins) via: Artful Parent
Download these easy and spooky pumpkin carving patterns for free!
More Babbles From Selena…
Selena is a crafty, culinary mom. Creative Director. Social Media & Branding Consultant. Regular writer on Disney Baby. Part-time big-mouth & frequent foot-eater. Proud of her Anishinaabe roots.
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