Groom Carves Romantic Halloween Pumpkin for Fall Wedding

Courtesy Kieran Hartnett

Software engineer by day, romantic pumpkin carver by night, groom-to-be Kieran Hartnett toiled away for 10 to 15 hours creating an impressive Halloween-themed masterpiece for his Oct. 12 wedding.

"She was pretty blown away by it," Hartnett, 31, of Chicago, told of his wife's reaction to the final product.

Hartnett's pumpkin carving was replicated from a photo the happy couple took while on a family trip to North Carolina. But since they live in Chicago, a town with a magnificent skyline, he decided to add the windy city to the background for an extra special effect.

"She was extremely impressed," he said. "When you see how it looks when you put a light into it, lighting up all the dark areas, it turned out really good."

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Knowing full well he wouldn't want to be preoccupied with pumpkin carving the night before his nuptials, Hartnett decided to go with a "Funkin," a fake foam pumpkin, for the big day instead.

"I knew coming up on the wedding I wouldn't want to be carving a real pumpkin the night before, especially since they only last a couple days with all the small, carved details. So I was able to get this done a month or two in advance so it lasted," the groom said.

Although his work is very impressive, Hartnett admits he'd had some pumpkin-carving practice before attempting to recreate his bride's real-life beauty.

"An old coworker of mine did this a lot," Hartnett said. "He would take a lot of patterns and would have a get-together at a bar in Chicago. He introduced me into the style of doing photo-realistic carvings."

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Hartnett has created about seven realistic carvings in total, using only a plastic saw that can be purchased from a Walgreen's pumpkin carving kit, and a small wood carving set from a craft store.

"I thought it would be really cool to display at our wedding," he said. "We had a long engagement so we had time to do some DIY projects."

The creative carving impressed their fall-themed wedding guests so much it begged the question of how Hartnett would ever top the romantic gesture next year for their anniversary.

"We could do a series of them perhaps," he said. "We're going to have a lot of wedding pictures we can work off of, so I think that could work great."

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