This is a really simple design that we did on a weekend (built the boxes and painted the insides on a Saturday and then added the skins on a Sunday). It is very easy to get the kids involved with this project and I highly recommend it if this is for them!
Materials I used:
Ear muffs / hearing protection
1" x 2" board
Color photo printer
Paper cutter or scissors
Step 1: Build the Boxes
I used some 1/4" plywood that I had left over from some unknown project. But keep in mind if you use it, it really isn't 1/4" thick.
FAILURE ALERT: I did all of my initial calculations for my cut list based on it being 1/4" thick (see photo); however, I was able to catch my mistake before cutting and recalculated. Remember--measure twice, cut once!
I apologize for not having my recalculations here (lost my sheet). The formulas are correct in the picture for the simple design I did--use them based on the size of pumpkin and material thickness you have.
There are Instructables that show how to make much better boxes. If you want this to be something more durable, you may want to follow those instead of what I did. If you follow what I did, you might find it helpful to label the parts with pencil (as I did) so that you can line them all up perfectly later.
Once I had finished my cut list (with adjustments for the actual wood thickness), I glued them up with wood glue. I don't have any fancy box jigs so I just used painter's tape to hold it together while it dried. The boxes (I made 2) feel plenty strong.
Step 2: Paint
Another great opportunity to get the kids involved (unless you are making it for yourself, of course)!
We didn't have any orange paint so we mixed some yellow and red we had around. Black on the inside probably would be good, too--no wrong way to go here.
Not show here are some 1" x 2" board that were cut to fit inside of the boxes and were painted black.
Step 3: Attach Handles
Note that I recessed this by the thickness of the plywood I used. My plan was to be able to make lids for these so that they could be used as storage later. The lid can sit on the handle and fit within the top of the box flush with the current top of the box.
Step 4: Skin 'Em
There are tons of papercraft sites out there that have patterns for these kinds of things. I did a quick search and found a Minecraft Pumpkin on minecraftpapercraft.com (my boys were clear that they wanted the Pumpkin and NOT the Jack 'O Lantern). I imported it into Photoshop Elements and resized it to the size I needed. It was blurry at first, and I found that by resampling using "nearest neighbor" (see photo) made the lines nice and crisp.
You might want to do a test print first to confirm that your print size on your computer matches the print size that comes off your printer before printing off all the skins.
Once you have the first one printed, trim it and test the fit over your box. Once you confirm the fit, print the rest.
I used some tacky craft glue to bond the skins to the box. Use a thin amount so that it doesn't wet the photo paper.
Step 5: Enjoy!
Good luck and Happy Halloween!