Arts and Crafts for Kids Halloween Project: Paper-Mache Jack O’ Lantern.

by Lyn Bell

Making a Jack O’ Lantern from a large orange pumpkin is the usual Halloween craft project but perhaps you live in a country that doesn’t have pumpkins on 31 October.  Here’s your solution and although it is an ideal Halloween project and great idea as an arts and crafts for kids to join in, it is best to have an adult to help and to supervise.

What you will need is a large round balloon, newspaper and paper-mache (papier-mache) paste made by mixing one part flour and five parts water and boiling the mixture for about three minutes with a little salt to avoid mould.  You will also need paint in orange and green colors and a little brown for accent.   For the pumpkin stem cut about an inch from the end of a toilet roll core.

Blow up the balloon and tie with a long piece of string.  Cut the newspaper into two inch strips and dip into the paste.  Cover the balloon with the strips of paper, building a good few layers to help keep the ‘pumpkin’ strong. Bumps and lumps will make it more authentic. Remember to make a flat part for the lantern to be able to stand.  Hang your craft to dry remembering to place something under it to catch any drips of paste.  Once dried gently pierce the lantern with a needle to deflate the balloon. The toilet roll core can be attached to the lantern with paste and more paper to make a stem.

With a sharp knife cut the eyes and mouth in your lantern.  The kids will have fun painting it to look like a big orange pumpkin Jack O’ Lantern.  Paint the stem in green.  Your paper-mache Jack O’ Lantern is ready for its light.  As it is paper you should not use candles but a small torch will do nicely.

Have fun with this arts and crafts for kids Halloween project and happy ‘booing’.

And if you do have fresh pumkins or would rather paint faces on your paper-mache Jack O' Lantern try Easy Pumpkin Painting for some ideas.

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