In honor of Halloween, our inventor of the month is John Bardeen; he invented a tool that everyone uses at Halloween.  Do you know what it is?  It has to do with pumpkins… give up?  It is the Pumpkin Carving Kit!John Bardeen’s patent for “a pumpkin carving kit includes first and second sets of different types of cutting tools, preferably drill elements and saw elements, at least one pattern sheet having a decorative design and an instruction book having first instructions for securing the pattern sheet and transferring the design onto the surface of the pumpkin, second instructions for using the first set of cutting tools on selected design features and third instructions for using the second set of cutting tools on other selected design features” was actually an improvement of the “pumpkin carving kit” that his father, Paul Bardeen had originally designed.  Originally Paul’s invention used “small hand-held saws and spiral drill bits” these tools would produce intricate and exotic looking carved pumpkins.John Bardeen used to carve pumpkins with his father Paul Bardeen, who was a safety engineer and inventor.  They used to hold carving parties in their home in Wisconsin as well as in surrounding communities.  Sadly Paul Bardeen passed away in 1983; John and the family decided to turn their jack-o-lantern carving traditions into a family business called Pumpkin Masters and in 1987 John filed for a patent title Pumpkin Carving Kit.Carving pumpkins has always been a tradition and usually consisted of humorous, simple or other decorative features that were usually hacked away by kitchen knives, pocket knives, etc.  They were always hard to maneuver, but thanks to the invention by the Bardeen’s, pumpkin carving can now be developed into intricate carvings.  So the next time you are sitting with your family, friends and carving an intricate beautiful design on your pumpkin, remember it is thanks to John and Paul Bardeen’s pumpkin carving kit that can help turn your simple pumpkin into a masterpiece.Happy HalloweenFurther Reading:;Jessica Vann loves holidays and finds it interesting doing research on holiday inspired inventions.  If you have a holiday inspired idea that you need help with or want to know how to get started, reach out to Innovate Product Design at

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