Carving a wooden pumpkin

I have seen quite a few impressive wooden pumpkins on the internet and decided to have a go. Luckily I had recently rescued a large union of freshly felled Sycamore that the wood fairies had left behind as it was too big and nasty to split for firewood.

The original ‘big lump’ of wood was first sawn into three pieces to make it more manageable and placed on a cherry log podium work bench.

Lump of recently felled Sycamore
Lump of recently felled Sycamore

The log was then trimmed with a chainsaw until a rough pumpkin shaped had been achieved.

Roughing out the rough shape with a chainsaw
Roughing out the rough shape of a pumpkin with a chainsaw

The wooden pumpkin was then planed to shape and a first pass of 60 grit sand paper applied. A hole was popped into the top and a nice curved piece of Hazel found to make a pumpkin ‘stem’.

The roughed out Sycamore pumpkin together with a hazel stalk
The roughed out Sycamore pumpkin together with a naturally curved hazel stalk

As the wood is unseasoned and still very wet there is no way of sanding a proper finish so it will be stored and finished next year when it has fully seasoned.  This will give me a year to make a decision; varnish, wax or paint. I suspect the pattern of the grain around the union will mean it is left as a wood finish but I am so tempted to try a coat of chalk paint to see how that looks.

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