Organizing Tip: How to Not Make a Mess When Carving a Pumpkin

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Image of a carved pumpkinThinking about carving a pumpkin this month for Halloween?

What could be seen as a fun activity is actually quite a messy activity in disguise!

Here are some tips to help you keep things tidy:

Plan your carving pattern ahead of time.

Chances are you probably won’t want to stop and think about which pattern you’d like to carve once you are elbow-deep in pumpkin innards! Take some time before carving to do a quick or rough sketch, research photos or templates online for inspiration.

ID a carving station.

Preferably this should be an indoors area that is not heavily trafficked and has a solid, concrete, linoleum or tile floor for easy clean up. You might even want to consider having your carving station outside on your backyard patio or driveway if that’s easier for you in terms of clean up and space.

Prepare your carving station.

Set up the items you’ll need to carve your pumpkin in advance; you’ll have a better idea of what you’ll need/won’t need and won’t waste time looking for items once you start carving.

Here are some items you might want to include in your station:

  • Garbage bags, a large plastic tarp, newspapers, or a kiddie pool. You’ll either work on top of or inside of this makeshift carving area. Everything will be tidily contained and much easier to clean up after the fact.
  • Sharp, small pairing knife and other sized knives as necessary. Make sure your knives are sharp for clean cuts.
  • Sturdy scooping utensil. Use this to scoop out the insides of the pumpkin.
  • Paper towels, baby wipes and/or a large bowl of warm, soapy water. It’s so much easier to clean up your hands with these items than fumbling with the sink.
  • Old towels or rags. For drying your hands and to mop up any errant pumpkin innards.
  • Container for pumpkin seeds. If you are going to roast pumpkin seeds for eating after carving, you’ll want to have a place to put the seeds.

Schedule enough time for carving.

When it comes to wielding a carving knife, the last thing you want is to be rushed! Give yourself enough time to set up your carving station, for the actual carving as well as for clean up. It’s better to over-budget your time so you’ll have enough time in which to comfortably work.

Now to you…do have a favorite pumpkin carving pattern? Will you carve that pattern this year or try something new? Join in the conversation and leave a comment below! 

Follow Rashelle:
Rashelle Isip is a New York City-based professional organizer and productivity consultant who helps people get organized so they can stress less, have more fun, and be happier at home. Her work has been featured in Good Housekeeping, Fast Company, Cosmopolitan, The Washington Post, Business Insider, and The Atlantic. Get access to her free guide, 10 Simple Ways to Make Your To-Do Lists More Effective, by clicking here.