Decorated Easter Eggs
Dying Easter Eggs is an art form with a long tradition.
These beautiful decorated eggs make great gifts for family and friends. They are given as gifts in Eastern Europe where they are known as pysanky eggs. Anyone (even older children) can create them using simple tools:
How to make decorated Easter Eggs
you will needs Hens Eggs, a small pot of Beeswax, a small bottle of Paraffin
and some Egg Dyes.
You can prepare your eggs days, weeks or months in advance by cleaning the shell, piercing both ends with a needle and blowing the contents out into a bowl (it will undoubtedly be omlettes for lunch on that day).
It takes a little effort to blow the contents of the egg out through the hole (make the holes larger for easier blowing) but in the end you will end up with an nice empty eggshell. Rinse the shell and let it dry.
Mix equal amounts of beeswax and paraffin and melt together. This is your masking solution. Using a thick needle (mounted on dowel or cork for a pen handle) apply drops of masking solution on to the egg in a pattern of your choice. You will notice in most pysanky egg designs there are lots of straight lines. These are achieved by stretching rubber bands around the eggs and using their edges as guides for applying the wax.
Dying your Easter Egg
Now dye the egg a light colour according to the dying instructions. Dying eggs is not difficult and is pretty safe, so children can help (under supervision).
Let the dyed egg dry. You will be tempted to remove the wax and see how your dyed easter egg has turned out at this point, but you must resist temptation. Now mask some more of the egg and then dye in a stronger colour. Repeat and dye a third colour (three colours is traditional in Poland, the Ukranians use a wider palette).
Finishing off your pysanky egg
Ok, once it is all dry, you can begin to remove the mask and reveal your wonderful dyed eggs for the first time. Remove all the masking solution bit by bit. To do this, heat the egg with a hairdryer and quickly wipe the molten solution off. Your eggs can then be varnished to preserve them.
This tradition is a popular Ukranian easter activity, and also in Poland and the Czech republic. In Germany there is a similar tradition of egg dying, but it generally involves fewer steps and more simplistic decorations.