Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images

With fall approaching, you may want to know some creative ways to decorate a pumpkin. And you may not want to carve it.

After all, pumpkin pulp is smelly, messy, and a total hassle. Knives tend to not be a good plan with kiddos either, so traditional carving is not always the way to go. And that’s okay! There are plenty of alternatives for pumpkin decorating that you can get in on.

Do you live for DIY’s? Are crafts something you crave? Do you feel like pumpkins are a great canvas for artistic expression? If you said “yes” to any one of those questions, this list is for you. There are so many fun ways to decorate a pumpkin without requiring a knife, scooper, or yucky pumpkin guts.

Pumpkins were meant for more than JUST carving. They are perfect, (most times) orange vessels for your wildest creativity. They can be decorated in a multitude of ways.

The closer to fall and Halloween we get, the more we need to prepare for how we intend to dress up the pumpkins we’ve picked from the patch. Take this list as your inspiration for creation.

Here are 11 creative ways to decorate a pumpkin without carving:

  • Drip Painting

    If you’re okay with a mess, this is a fun option for all involved. All you need is a pumpkin and some drippy paint. Pour to your heart’s content and see how lovely the melty colors look.

  • Fabric

    This is a great option if you have extra fabric lying around that you want to get rid of. Or, if you need your pumpkin to match something specific. Get some Mod Podge and make your pumpkin groovy.

  • Studs

    Studs are a fun and easy option for the punks and rockers out there. They are already poke-y, so with no extra supplies required, you can stick some metal studs in your pumpkin. No studs? Thumbtacks work and look relatively the same.

  • Marbled Nail Polish

    This is a cool one if you’re up for a challenge. You’ll need water, nail polish, and a bowl that can fit a pumpkin. Fill the bowl with water and pour as many colors of nail polish as you’d like in the bowl. The polish with float in a thin layer on top of the water. Dunk the pumpkin in and watch the marbled masterpiece transfer right on.

  • Lace

    Lace is a cool, gothic option for decoration. It’s perfectly spooky without too much mess, time, or commitment. Plus, you can pick any color lace you’d like.

  • Crayon Drip

    If you have kids, this is a fun and easy option. Simply take the paper off your crayons, glue them to the top of your pumpkin, and take a hair dryer or heat gun on a low heat setting to them. They will melt and drip their waxy, pretty colors down.

  • Leaves As Stencils

    If you have spray paint and a pile of leaves you just raked in your yard, you’re set. Use any leaves you’d like as stencils on your pumpkin and paint over them. The cool leafy pattern will look perfect for autumn.

  • Glitter

    https://youtu.be/wEFfqaOsnds?si=oTKLR5KPa_bCHdfn

    For the fans of glam, try this one out. You need some type of glue that can coat a pumpkin, and glitter, It’s simple and effective, albeit a bit messy. For an alternative, only put glitter on the stem. It looks cool and takes less time!

  • Mummy

    Mummies are perfect for the Halloween season. Using gauze or white streamers and some googly eyes, you can make a mystifying mummy. Just wrap your pumpkin in white colored strips and give it eyes. Simple, fun, and perfectly spooky.

  • Flowers

    Dried or fresh, flowers are the perfect accessory for your pumpkin. You can either poke holes in your gourd and stick flower stems in, or adhere some dried flowers to the surface of the fruit. It will make the perfect centerpiece or porch decoration.

  • Jewels

    If you’re a lover of all things glam, get some glue, some sequins or gems, and bejewel your pumpkin! It’s a perfect way to make fall match your aesthetic.

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