Create a No-Carve Patterned Pumpkin for Halloween

Glam up a pumpkin with some tape and a can of spray paint.

If you want to skip the mess of carving a jack-o-lantern this Halloween (or simply want to try something different in your seasonal decor), give these patterned spray-paint pumpkins a whirl. You probably have everything you need to decorate these pumpkins in your home already, but even if you don’t, it only takes a few supplies! What’s great about this pumpkin-decorating technique is that it’s easy to freestyle your own designs with painter’s tape. We go through the steps of making a chevron pumpkin with painter’s tape, but if you have multiple pumpkins on hand, feel free to experiment! Try varying widths of painter’s tape, such as thick vertical stripes or a crisscross pattern. Or tape off whole sections of the pumpkin and paint in bold colors for a contemporary look.

If you’re really interested in leveling up your pumpkin-decorating game and want to show off your love of birds, check out our No-Carve Owl Pumpkins made with newspaper and scrapbook paper! And if you want to go more traditional (but with a spin), try our Owl Jack-o-Lantern project!

This craft originally appeared in Country Woman magazine.


  • Pumpkins
  • Painter’s tape
  • Ruler
  • Spray paint
  • Scissors

Step-By-Step Instructions:

Step 1

For chevron stripes, mark off the desired depth of the chevron (ours is 2-1/2 in.) on 1-in. painter’s tape. Cut several lengths. Mark the widest point around the pumpkin’s circumference with a pencil. Position a length of tape on a 30- to 45-degree angle so that the bottom corner touches the center guideline. Apply lengths of tape around the pumpkin at the same angle with one corner of each piece touching the center mark, and overlapping the pieces at the ends to form a continuous line. Add stripes above and below the center about 1 in. apart to complete design. Tape over stem.

Step 2

photo credit: TMBI, Inc.

Working quickly in a well-ventilated area, spray-paint pumpkin. Wait a minute or two. Spray on a second coat.

Step 3

Wait a minute or so and then remove tape strips. Do this while the paint is still tacky to prevent chipping. Let paint dry thoroughly.