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Melon Lantern aka Chinese Lantern

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I had this great idea of making a summer melon lantern, after some research I found that I'm not the only genius out there.  This is my step by step experience with a spin on the traditional Chinese Melon Lantern.  
 
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Step 1: Supplies

Supply List:

1.  Nice watermelon.  (TIP: Try to find something that fits your design.  I picked a nice round watermelon even though ones with flat sides are easier to layout a design.)

2.  Marking Tool.  (Tip:  I used two different styles to make my lantern.  First I used a stencil, with tape, and a knife.  Second I used a Sharpie marker, then some alcohol, and towels for cleaning up mistakes.  You could also use something to poke your design like they do for the pumpkin stencils.)

3.  Art.  (Tip: can free hand a drawing, or download something off the internet.  Look for things that aren't copywritten of course : )  No reason to break the law or steal other peoples work that are not giving it away.)

4. Tape.  (Tip: I used clear box tape)

5.  Bowl.  (Note:  You use this for your edible parts.)

6.  Knifes.  (Note: I used one large slicing knife for cutting open the top, and one small ceramic paring knife for my stencil work and carving.)  (Tip: Be careful if you use ceramic, it is very sharp and fragile.)

7.  Card stock or business card.  (Note: This is for making a protector sleeve and handle for your carving tool, if you use a knife.)

8.  Rubbing Alcohol and towels.  (Note: As stated above this if for free hand work, so you can clean up messes if you use a sharpie.)

9.  Scoop.  (Note: I found an Ice Cream Scoop worked the best for me, but you can use what you have.)

10.  Light source.  (Note: Different light sources create different effects.  I used LED lights and a candle to try different effects.  You can try more if you like.)

11.  Scissors.  (Note: Used for cutting out your design and tool sleeve.)

12.  Large Cutting Board.  (Note: Helps with the mess, or you could go outside!)

12.  Some hungry people to help you eat the Watermelon!  (Note: Children work well for this!)

OPTIONAL Items

1. Vaseline and something to apply it with. (Note: I know with pumpkins if you coat all exposed fleshy parts with Vaseline it will help to preserve the lantern, I'm not sure about watermelon.  I don't see why it wouldn't work though...)
REBELIOUS12 years ago
WOULD NOT SORRY
REBELIOUS12 years ago
I MUST SAY YOU REALLY HAVE A FLARE FOR THIS KIND OF STUFF THIS IS ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL WORK GREAT JOB I WOULD HAVE THE PATIENCE TO DO THAT YOU HAVE MY VOTE
DR>TooTle2 years ago
Excellent work, I wish I was artistic!
sze arteest2 years ago
Great job and skills! Thanks for sharing the watermelon project with Creat n Carve Event.

I use a needle to poke a stencil design to watermelon and then I carve it using a thai knife. I have never used vaseline for my carvings but a water to spray. I think I will try your hint.

I like your kind sense of humor :)
1ofakindwork (author)  sze arteest2 years ago
Thanks, I will have to try that one. I found your site after I had completed my project. Next project I will do some research on your site. It looks like you have a lot of useful information...Thanks for the tip with the needle and the thai knife. I will keep you posted of any new projects I do. Please post some instructables if you get some time. This site is a great resource for many people including me! :) I go here before I go anywhere else, when I'm trying to learn something new and creative!
BodyMan542 years ago
Looks like a lot of work, I like it!
1ofakindwork (author) 2 years ago
Create n Carve ~ Fruit and Vegetable September 2011 Event by simply.food (
guest hosted by Fruit Carving Arramgements and Food Garnishes

I just found a fruit carving contest and I thought everyone would like to know about it.
This site also has a lot of information on how to carve all kinds of fruit.

http://www.simplysensationalfood.com/p/simplyfood-events.html
http://garnishfood.blogspot.com/

fruit and vegetable carving event september 2011.JPG
1ofakindwork (author) 2 years ago
I looked for my x-acto kife for a while and couldn't find the blades. But I'm actually glad I didn't find it, because it made me come up with a tool I actually like using better. The card stock gave my hand a break, because I had a bigger grip to hold that seemed to give me more control scraping. The x-acto would have been nice for the template and outline....thanks for the comment.
Most Asian kitchenware shops sell sets of cutters for carving fruit and vegetables.
1ofakindwork (author)  Light_Lab2 years ago
Thanks for the comment. I will keep an eye out for a set. I was a fun project. I was pretty happy with my rig...Have a great day!
1ofakindwork (author) 2 years ago
Please leave me a rating if you get a chance!!!!!
1ofakindwork (author) 2 years ago
Thanks for all the comments. Please look for me in the playing with your food contest...

I like all the suggestions. I was so tiered after five hours of carving it was 2 am before i was done with everything. I might try some of the ideas posted. I really like the sticking the LED light into the melon at hot spots. If I get around to it i will post more photos....Thanks for all the ideas also...Have a great one!
Kinnishian2 years ago
It may be suggested in the comments, but for the LED somethings to improve the hotspot:

1)Take off the lens, that often focuses it more (depending what kind of LED light it is, though- some are just a bunch of focused LEDS and some are a single LED thats extra focused by the lens, more like traditional xenon flashlights)

2) make one of the flash diffussers that photographers have. The simplest design I can think of is a paper tube ~1.5 inches taller than your flashlight, and add a paper top to it, or cover the top with a layer or two of white tap. Hopefully, this will help diffuse the light.
fvaldes632 years ago
Wow.Great work. I don't think I would have the time and patience. I bow, you are an artist. :-)
Quizicat2 years ago
Had you thought about using an x-acto knife to do the carving? I really like your design. Also a string of LED x-mas lights would also work, while having less hot spots, or maybe lots of hot spots. You could push the bulbs into the rind inside and have hot spots right where you want them, or just wrap them around a glass and tape them to it, so you can keep the lights away from the rind and have more diffused light. Candles and incandescent light will definitely shorten the life of the melon. Spray on cooking oil could also work for extending its life, while being easier to apply over the inner surfaces.
jamwaffles2 years ago
Incredible work! I wouldn't have a hope of making something this beautiful, so many hats off to you, my good sir.
1ofakindwork (author) 2 years ago
It's hard enough peeling roasted bell peppers, I couldn't imagine carving a fresh one. Have a nice day!
1ofakindwork (author) 2 years ago
Thank you for the nice comment. It probably would have been easier to paint..JK It was a fun project. Thanks for the rating..
I tried a few months ago to carve a bell pepper I am afraid my carving skills were pretty thin. You did a great job on this! Have a super 3 day weekend!
sunshiine2 years ago
Very nice! I thought this was an artist painting or something. This is kind of better! Thanks for sharing and have a splendorous day!
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