Choose a pumpkin pattern at PumpkinPile. There are hundreds of patterns to choose from. Find a pattern that you really like, and print it off. To find a pattern, simply click on "Patterns" above.
Hint: Sometimes your pumpkin is to small for the pattern you chose. When you print off your pumpkin pattern PDF, simply choose to scale the size of your pattern PDF to a size that is perfect for your pumpkin. Typically, these pumpkin stencils will be the perfect size for most pumpkins without any scaling.
Prepare your pumpkin. Find a stable and large table, and cover it with newspapers. Place your pumpkin on top of the table. Grab the largest carving saw (if you don't have one, you find one on Amazon.com here: Pumpkin Carving Kit) you have and cut a hole on the top of your pumpkin around the stem. You need to make sure to cut a whole big enough so you can get your whole hand in there. Grab a scooper (a large spoon will also do) and start digging out all of the "guts" and seeds. Place this directly into a trash bin (or, if you'd prefer to roast your pumpkin seeds, set these aside).
Make sure to use the pumpkin scooper (or spoon) and get all of the "guts" out, so you're left with a clean pumpkin inside without any of that strange stringy stuff. Once you're done gutting your pumpkin, grab a wet rag or a paper towel and wash any dirt off of your pumpkin. Then use a paper towel to thoroughly dry off your pumpkin.
Hint: If you don't have pumpkin carving tools, visit our store above and purchase a simple pumpkin tool carving kit. It's less than $10 bucks and you'll use it for years.
Tape your pumpkin pattern onto your pumpkin. Sometimes it's easier to cut around your pattern's highlighted areas, so you don't have as much to tape onto your pumpkin. Feel free to do this, if it makes taping your pattern on your pumpkin. Use ample amounts of tape (make sure your pumpkin is dry) and tape your pattern on your pumpkin.
Mark your pattern. Use a "push pin" or the "pokey radial tool" that comes in most pumpkin carving tool kits (here's a kit that includes that "pokey" thing: Pumpkin Carving Kit) to poke (every 1/8 inch or .5 centimeters) on the outline of every highlighted area of your pumpkin. You're going to get really bored doing this, but this step is really important, don't rush it. Once you are done poking holes around the outline of each highlighted area, you can remove the pattern and tape from your pumpkin.
Cut out your pumpkin pattern. OK, you've removed your pumpkin pattern and tape, and now you're left with a pumpkin that's got a ton of little pin pricks in it, right? Now, take your smallest carving saw and start cutting out the marked areas (cut right on the dots). Take your time! Especially for small and intricate areas, you're going to want to work slowly, and make sure you don't destroy your beautiful masterpiece!
Clean up your pumpkin and place a candle (electric lights are safest and recommended). You're going to find a lot of little pieces of pumpkin inside your pumpkin. Clean all of these pieces out of your pumpkin. Once you've done that, grab a candle, and display your pumpkin! Congratulations!