How did we come up with this crazy idea? Well…when I took Alberto home to Arkansas for the first time, it was hunting season and everyone was wearing camouflage — even my sisters (although theirs was pink camo!) That was also the time my dad taught Alberto to shoot a rifle. He was terrified and ever since that time, Alberto has always been unnerved around people in camo.
Fast forward eight years later and we find ourselves walking around the fabric store looking for Halloween ideas. We didn’t like any of the seasonal fabrics they had, but on the way out we came across some remnant camo. It made Alberto squirm and that’s when I had the idea of making them into scary Cam-o’-laterns! If nothing else, it will make him cringe every time he sees them at home. PERFECT!
Here’s what we used to make the Cam-o’-lanterns:
- 1/2-yard camouflage fabric
- Fabric stiffener
- Spaghetti squash (easier to shape than regular pumpkins)
- Flameless votive candles
This is what we needed to put it together:
- Exacto knife
- Latex gloves
- Plastic bags, plastic wrap, newspaper and rubber bands
Let’s make some lanterns!
We started by wrapping the squash in plastic wrap. The fabric stiffener can be a harsh chemical, and we didn’t want to ruin the fruit. Next, cut a piece of fabric big enough to cover the entire squash and leave a few extra inches around.
Now comes the fun part! Stuff the fabric into a plastic bag, pour in the fabric stiffener, and squish, squish, squish until the fabric is fully soaked in the stiffener. Set the squash in the middle of the prepared surface, put on the latex gloves and remove the fabric from the plastic bag. Quickly drape the fabric over the squash. At the top, pull up a little of the fabric over the stalk, and using the rubber band, wrap that rascal around the fabric at the base of the stalk. This will keep the stalk in place. Mold the fabric around the squash, and slap another rubber band around the bottom to hold the fabric in place. Taking extra fabric stiffener into your hands, rub the fabric down so that it clings tight to the sides of the squash.
After you let the fabric dry for about half an hour (but before it’s completely dried), gently remove the squash from inside the fabric. This may take a little time and finesse because you don’t want to ruin the shape of the pumpkin. Once the squash is removed, stick a plastic bag inside the fabric as a lining, and fill it with newspaper. This will help the fabric hold its shape, while allowing you to easily remove the paper later. Reshape the cloth into the pumpkin shape as needed, and let it dry fully.
Alberto wanted to try something different, and I wanted something that was a little spicy. We both like margaritas and guacamole, so why not combine the two. He came up with the Spicy Avocado Margarita, and it matches our project perfectly. (And you must always match!) It sounds very odd, but its actually very delicious. The avocado adds a slight creaminess that balances out the tequila while the pepper gives it a great kick. These margaritas may be a little too good!
The Ghoulish Ending!
When the fabric has dried completely, draw a face on your pumpkin and cut it out with the exacto knife along with the excess fabric around the bottom of the pumpkin. Place the flameless candle votives inside and display on the table. These are such cute and easy pumpkins, and you don’t have the mess of carving a real pumpkin!