I had waffled for the last few weeks over whether to buy the cheap Easter egg dyeing kit but opted instead this year to give natural dyes a try. The kids and I boiled some eggs (both white and brown), mixed up some new natural dye concoctions, got out some crayons, and set to work.
Doing a little bit of research on the computer and surveying my own cupboards, I chose paprika, coffee, hibiscus tea and beet juice as our samples for our first year of natural egg dyeing. For the beet juice, tea and coffee I simply mixed in a tablespoon of vinegar. For the paprika, I mixed about 3 heaping teaspoons with a cup of water and a tablespoon-plus of vinegar. The kids all helped mix while I helped hold the cups steady so we wouldn’t dye the countertops!
I laid out newspapers on the table and set out crayons. The children used towels to dry the hardboiled eggs and then each chose a crayon to draw on the eggs. They were very anxious to get dyeing! I had two plastic cups for each dye so two children were able to start with the beet juice, while the other two set about on the paprika (we had invited a friend and her mama over to dye with us). We noticed the beet juice took effect immediately. I highly recommend beet juice as a natural dye.
Adella, my youngest, was especially excited and nearly threw her egg in the beet juice, splashing drops everywhere! The paprika also worked well and even gave a grainy texture to the eggs – sort of a polka dot effect.
Next up were the coffee and tea. The kids set about putting their eggs in both of these dyes, and we soon noted that the tea was not very effective, while the coffee gave a nice tan color to the eggs. It seemed initially that the brown eggs were not taking the dyes very well, but as they dried, I noticed all the eggs’ colors strengthened slightly.
The children were so pleased with their products that halfway through they were begging to eat them, so I let them. I figured they had worked up quite an appetite playing outside before our egg dyeing excursion. I am proud of our first attempts at using natural egg dyes.
How have your experiences been? Any tips?
Happy Spring everyone!
Mara Spiropoulos is the blog coordinator and parent voice for the LifeWays North America blog. She is a recent graduate of the LifeWays training program, resides in Milwaukee, WI, and is a full-time mother to 3 young children. Mara enjoys spending time in nature, reading and researching natural parenting and living, and crafting. She would love to hear from anyone willing to be a guest writer. You can reach her by email at email@example.com.