My kids love creating masterpieces on their Easter eggs. They each receive 18 eggs as their blank canvases, and they spend a couple hours meticulously manipulating the appearance of the egg until we have a barnyard of animals, a testament of Bible characters, a library of elliptical novellas, a museum of art, a secret test site full of aliens, and about three or four eggs reading “I luv Momy” and “Ur the bets Momy.” Those are my favorite.
Living in a travel trailer as traveling music missionaries, I’m not too crazy about the mess of egg dye, although it might be an improvement over the upholstery manufacturers put in RVs, if you know what I mean. Because I’m a dye-on-the-upholstery party pooper this year, but not an egg-fun party pooper, I researched some alternatives to the usual egg-in-cup method.
I also included some dye-related eggs for those of you who don’t have upholstery in your dining area, but who may be tired of the same old egg-in-a-cup dyeing method.
Creative Easter Eggs
We can’t start an Easter egg post without my daughter Hannah’s no-fail egg boiling method:
How to Boil Eggs: Making Perfect Hard-Boiled Eggs: The truth is that this is “no-fail” when she does, it, but I have focus issues. I focus really well, but not on what I’m doing.
No-Dye Easter Eggs
These mess-minimized ideas are perfect for small spaces, mamas who don’t want a ginormous mess, or people looking for more than an egg in a cup. We recreated the eggs in this section so you could see the final results.
Sharpie Eggs: You really don’t need a post to tell you how to use a permanent marker to doodle on an egg. My family’s been doing this for at least two generations. Still, it’s the 21st century, and you can’t have any ideas without a link and a tutorial, so here’s a tutorial which basically says to doodle on the egg. Still, it’s a fun post and gives you blown egg techniques.
Thumbprint Eggs: What I love about this is the potential for only the children’s thumbs to be colorful on Easter morning, as opposed to their entire hands. It’s a break with tradition, but I’ll risk it. This egg by my son is not at all what I had in mind, but he did use only his fingerprints, which was the only guidance I gave. That’s the fun of letting them get creative instead of letting them “get creative” by “helping” them do eggsactly what you want. For the idea in my head, click through the link.
String Eggs: The creators use a blown egg, but you can do this either on a regular boiled egg, on an already-dyed egg, or on a balloon and pop it. Popping balloons is one of the joys (or pathological fears) of childhood.
Aluminum Foil Egg-Dyeing Technique: Super simple and significantly less messy than traditional dyes.
Melted Crayon Eggs: This idea from Family Fun would be great for the older kids. The eggs would be too hot for the littles unless they are closely supervised. Did you notice that remark about focus issues? We really enjoyed this method, and the final result is shiny, shimmery, splendid! (This picture doesn’t show the shine.)
Decoupage Eggs: Drag out the junk mail and the 25-cents after holiday napkins for this fun craft. The link uses blown eggs, but my young artist used hard-boiled.
Artist’s Choice: Set out crayons, paints, whatever, and let the kids have at the eggs!
A very unfinished sequence painting on blown eggs, depicting Jesus’ birth and death:
Creative Egg Dyeing
These techniques all require some sort of dye, and most involve a cup and scooper-outer or colorful fingers unless you follow this simple tip. They are variations on the norm, and will yield some lovely eggs that, quite possibly, nobody will want to eat–because they’re pretty, not grody! For pictures and directions, click on each link.
Tie-Dye Easter Eggs: All the mess is contained in the sink! If we do dye this year, this is it!
Silk-Dyed Eggs: This is a little involved, including the involvement of a trip to the thrift store or the raiding of Dad’s old silk tie collection, but the results are beautiful.
Chinese Tea Eggs…or dinosaur eggs if you have little boys
Sticker Eggs: Save those star stickers!
Kool-Aid Eggs: Cheap, nostalgic…well, not for me, since we didn’t drink Kool-aid, but we did see plenty of commercials with the freakish giant Koolaid pitcher monster crashing through walls and passing out cups full of the liquid contents of its body for children to drink. Who thought of that nightmare scenario?!
Marbleized Eggs: Just add oil to what you’re already doing!
Watercolor Eggs: Technically it’s food coloring, which is dye and which is not watercolor paint, but it doesn’t involve dipping eggs in a tip-over-able cup, and the effect is charming. Great for any age.
Natural Easter Egg Dye: The sky’s the limit here, but this should get your creative “how can I naturally stain my eggs and my children” juices flowing. For more natural dye ideas, check out this post or this cute post.
If you did the math, you realize that I have seven children each decorating 18 eggs, plus the extra dozen I boil for crashes and creative parents, so that totals 138 hard-boiled eggs to consume. I’ve got you covered there, too.
How to Boil, Peel, and Use up Hard-Boiled Eggs
For more Easter fun, follow my Simple Easter Ideas Pinterest Board.
Happy dyeing! I can’t tell you how many times I wrote “happy dying” over the years before I noticed I was randomly wishing bemused readers everywhere a pleasant death by dropping that “e.” Spelling. It saves lives…and friendships.
What are your best no-dye or dyeing (with an “e”) tips ?