Tuesday, April 03, 2007


Dyed Easter Eggs are Arranged in a Circle by Stephen Alvarez
Dyed Easter Eggs are Arranged in a Circle

You may know that I dye yarn with natural dyes and many ingredients we have around the home can be used to dye eggs with for Easter.

At this time of the year you might well find kits in the shops to dye eggs in primary colours to decorate your home or do an easter egg hunt.
Last year, I used some housepaint that was left over in a variety of pastel shades but in the end these are neither edible or safe so have been looking at different ways to get colours in a natural way.

You need hard boiled eggs......? I guess you know how to boil an egg but if not here goes :
put the eggs in a pot with enough water to cover the eggs by 2.5 cm or 1 inch. Once the water boils, give it 10 mins for a hard boiled egg. Then remove from the heat and immeditately place the eggs in cold water. I run the cold water tap in the pan and let it overflow ( use it for washing up afterwards).

Once the egg is cold you can decide on how to colour it.

To make the dye:

Place 1 to 3 handfuls of the dyestuff in a saucepan . Add about 1 cup of water or about 2.5 cm above the dystuff. Bring to the boil, boil for 15 mins to an hour until you get the colour you like. Strain and put the liquid in a measuring cup. Add 2 to 3 teaspoons of vinegar to it. Put the warm dye in a pot tall enough to hide the eggs ( I use a large breakfast bowl and put it in the bottom aga oven. Leave the eggs in the pot until they have the colour you like. Lift them with a spoon and leave them on a rack to dry.

Now for the colours :

Pink/red - beetroot, cranberries, radishes and raspberries
orange - yellow onion skins
primrose yellow - orange and lemon peel, carrot tops, celery seed, ground cumin
dark yellow - turmeric ( use 2 tablespoons to make dye)
light green - spinach leaves
green-gold : apple peels
blue - red cabbage leaves
light brown to dark brown - strong brewed coffee
brown/ochre - dill seeds
orange-brown - chilli powder ( 2 tablespoons)

Or be creative and have a go with whatever else you have around the house that seems promising to dye with.

The dye liquid can be safely disposed off on the compost heap.


Sian said...

What beautiful colours. I think I'll give the red cabbage a go.

Toni said...

Well done you, it made me breathe out reading it, I will keep posted on the net and in the flesh.