Nothing quite says “Halloween” like a jack-o’-lantern.
Have you ever wondered…
What is a jack-o’-Lanter
Were jack-o’-lanterns always made with pumpkins?
Did you know?
As Halloween approaches each year, you will begin to see carved pumpkins — commonly called “jack-o’-lanterns” — sitting on front porches all across America. As it gets dark, you’ll notice that many of them are lit from within by candles, giving them a spooky glow that lets you know Halloween is right around the corner.
Although millions of Americans carve pumpkins every autumn, not many know why or how this tradition got started. As it turns out, we can thank an Irish myth about a man named Jack.
As the old Irish legend goes, “Stingy Jack” was a miserable old man who enjoyed playing tricks on everyone, including the devil himself. One day, Stingy Jack tricked the devil into climbing up an apple tree.
He then placed crosses around the tree to prevent the devil from climbing down. Stingy Jack did not remove the crosses and let the devil down until the devil promised he would not take Stingy Jack’s soul when he died.
Years later, Stingy Jack died. Since he had been so mean to people all his life, Saint Peter would not allow him to enter heaven. Stingy Jack visited the devil in hell, but the devil kept his word and would not take his soul.
Stingy Jack was scared to roam alone in the darkness between heaven and hell, so the devil gave him an ember from the flames of hell to help him light his way. Stingy Jack loved turnips and always carried one around with him in case he got hungry.
He hollowed out a turnip and placed the ember inside it, creating a lantern. From that point on, Jack roamed the Earth without a final resting place, lighting his way with his homemade lantern. He became known as “Jack of the Lantern” or “jack-o’-lantern” for short.
On Halloween, the Irish would hollow out turnips, rutabagas, gourds and beets. They would put candles inside them to ward off evil spirits and keep Stingy Jack away.
When Irish immigrants came to America, they brought the tradition of jack-o’-lanterns with them, but they soon discovered that pumpkins were bigger and easier to carve.
Although the Irish legend of Stingy Jack is very popular, some people believe that the term jack-o’-lantern was first used to describe the strange, ghostly, flickering lights that are sometimes seen at night over bogs, swamps and marshes.
These lights go by several other names, including “will-o’-the-wisp,” ignis fatuus, “hinkypunk,” “ghost-light,” “fairy light,” “hobby lantern” and “corpse candle.” The faint, flickering lights inside of carved pumpkins resemble these strange marsh lights.
Curiously, some scientists believe these mysterious marsh lights are caused by small fires that erupt when organic material in bogs, swamps and marshes decays, releasing methane and phosphine that spontaneously ignite when they come into contact with the oxygen in the air.
Other scientists believe these strange marsh lights may be explained by bioluminescent plants, such as honey fungus, or even the white feathers of barn owls that fly around in the night.
Or would you prefer a smiling pumpkin? Maybe you’d prefer to turn a pumpkin into your own unique artistic masterpiece… it’s up to you!
I prefer making on out of Donna Salazar’s wonderful products! Fun…Artistic….and one of a kind!
First draw your pumpkin man. He does not have to be perfect that is the wonderful thing about Jack and cut him out of the back of Donna Salazar Designs Artistic Papers by GCD Studios.
Color his face and antique the edges of his face with Donna’s Mixed Media Inx and Colorbox ink by Clearsnap.
Use Donna’s Mixed Media Inx to make eyes out of fabric covered buttons. Cut off Shank.
Cut piece of Donna’s Crafty Chronicles by GCD Studio’s, crimp and spritz with Smooch Spritz by Donna Salazar Designs by Clearsnap.
Decorate 4 x 4 piece of Donna Salazar Designs paper by GCD Studios. Add stamps and Fairy Dust glitter…or anything else that tickles your fancy.
Ink some Corrugated cardboard by Donna Salazar Designs for Zutter. Ink leaves from Donna’s Rose Creations by Spellbinders Paper Arts with Clearsnap Colorbox ink.
Staple the leaves and stem to front of pumpkin…add Artistic Wire by piercing the back top of Jack’s head and poke through….curling the ends in the front.
……curling the ends in the front.
Finish making it into your…spider web.
Tear up Donna’s Artistic Paper and Crafty Chronicle by GCD Studios ….ink with Donna’s Mixed Media Inx and Fairy Dust Glitter by Clearsnap
Adhere the piece over the body in a random pattern.
Cut AND tear around body shape add head and then turn Jack of your dreams….add those touches that make him yours
I added some Want2crap Bling!! YUM!! and denim to the bottom of his pants….(hat is for Donna.)
Vintage tatted lace. To sleeves and pants.
Hand stitching, Zutter corrugated cardboard, Clearsnap Smooch Spritz and more Want2Scrap™ bling and Nestabling to make him SO handsome.
I think these little touches makes him magical!
Lots of little details the more the better for my Jack!!
And in the end it is true love for me and Jack!
To create Jack*o*Lantern I used:
- Donna Salazar Designs Crafty Chronicle for GCD Studios.
Other: Embroidery floss, covered buttons, Want2Scrap™ bling and Nestabling , vintage tatted lace, vintage seam binding. and http://wonderopolis.org for information on Jack o lanterns
Jack O' Lantern: A Gothic Halloween Love
By: Kitty the Dreamer
The moon was full
I could hear cats screaming in the distance
Children's laughter filled the streets with clues of candy stomach aches and empty enthusiasm
I sat on my front porch
sinking into a pool of my own misery
When a dark cloud rolled in
and he stepped out of the night to rescue me
His hair was black just like the Halloween sky
His eyes glowed with the wisdom and protection of an owl
My Jack O' Lantern,
He saved me from all evil that night
his morbidly beautiful demeanor weakened my detached blocked black heart
I fell in love immediately, but where did my king of the night go?
Now I'm left here all alone, once again
To await the next Halloween eve.
Have a wonderful day and until next time…..Be Creative!