Natural Easter Egg Dyeing

Happy Easter! Celebrate the holiday by creating natural dyes to decorate your eggs. Many everyday vegetables and spices can be used to colour eggs, instead of using dye from the store. Add leaf imprints to your eggs to welcome in spring! Ask a parent to help you out with this activity, because you will need to use the stove.


What you’ll need:

  • Eggs

  • Small leaves or grass— cedar leaves would work well for this time of year!

  • Pantyhose, cut into 4 inch squares

  • Twist ties

  • Crayons

micheile-henderson-eggs with fern pattern-unsplash.jpg

Possible dyeing ingredients:

  • Beets (makes red-pink dye)

  • Purple cabbage (makes light blue-purple dye)

  • Turmeric (makes yellow dye)

  • Red onion skins (makes dark yellow-orange dye)

  • Coffee grounds (makes brown dye)

  • Parsley or Spinach (makes green dye)

For each colour of dye, you will need:

  • 1 cup water

  • 2 tablespoons vinegar

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 2 tablespoons (or more) of the dyeing ingredient

What to do:

  1. Hard boil your eggs.

  2. Add water, vinegar, salt, and the dyeing ingredient to a separate pot. Bring to a boil.

  3. Simmer the ingredients for 30 minutes.

  4. Remove dye from heat, strain, and let cool in small bowls.

  5. Repeat for each colour.

  6. Place a leaf on the egg. Wrap it in pantyhose, and secure with a twist tie. This should keep the leaf tight to the egg.

  7. If you would prefer, draw your own leaf on in wax crayon. These shapes will remain white after dyeing.

  8. Dye your eggs! Dip an egg in the dye for about 30 seconds, let it dry and re-dip it for more vibrant colours. You can re-dip it into a different colour too— get creative!

  9. If your eggs are in pantyhose, allow them to dry before removing the hose and the leaf.

  10. Put your eggs on display while keeping them cool so that you can enjoy eating them later.

Photo by Annie on Flickr

Photo by Annie on Flickr

Ask yourself:

  • What other natural items might work as dye?

  • What colours mix nicely together on your egg?

  • How do the leaf imprints look different from your wax drawings?

Blog post written by Claire Merkosky, SCiP intern.