Natural Dye for Eggs? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 16 Old 03-20-2007, 07:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'd like to dye Easter eggs this year using natural dyes. Any ideas / recipes??
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#2 of 16 Old 03-20-2007, 11:38 PM
 
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i boil the eggs in water with the outer layers of onions. turn out yellow with the ... 'regular' onion in it, and pink with redonions.
if that made any sense. sorry my bad english, im norwegian.


wish you all an inspiring vernal equinox
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#3 of 16 Old 03-20-2007, 11:54 PM
 
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i have heard you can also use purple cabbage, and tea works for brownish tan

i have also heard you ca put the egg in a stocking with the dye stuff wrapped around it to make interesting patterns

mama to two amazing children son 10/27/07 and daughter 07/07/11

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#4 of 16 Old 03-21-2007, 12:00 AM
 
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I was just searching for natural egg dye info yesterday and found this article:

http://www.celestialseasonings.com/t...g-article.html
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#5 of 16 Old 03-21-2007, 11:41 AM
 
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great article. thanks.
*runs out to buy more eggs*
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#6 of 16 Old 03-21-2007, 03:26 PM
 
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does anyone know if brown eggs color well?

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#7 of 16 Old 03-21-2007, 11:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meksmama View Post
does anyone know if brown eggs color well?
They take the dye the same but most easter egg colors aren't dark enough to hide the brown very well.

Tumeric is a lovely golden yellow dye, beets make a bright red (smells just like borscht when you cook it.)

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#8 of 16 Old 03-22-2007, 12:04 AM
 
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I use the onion skins( I always buy white eggs for that reason this time of year!) purple onion skins add a nice colour too. I place a layer of onion skins on a square of scrap fabric then I sprinkle things like rice or pieces of plants like leaves or ferns on top of that, then I stick the egg in the middle. I bundle the whole thing around the egg making sure that the onion skins touch all of the way around. I wrap the outside of the fabric with rubber bands. Repeat for as many eggs as you would like. Then boil/ simmer the bundles in a pot of water for 30 min. Unwrap and rub a drop of oil on the eff to shine it up "purdy"! I like them like this. Last year I had a real nest that had fallen out of a tree and I put them in it and wrapped ivy around the base of it. It looked pretty cool

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#9 of 16 Old 03-22-2007, 12:10 AM
 
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Funny I should read this and just the other day I caught a tiny bit of Martha Stewart on tv.

She had boiled purple cabbage and also beats. To each batch of colored water she added salt and vinegar -- to help hold color. For brown she suggested using leftover coffee.

She also added a lot of turmuric (not sure of spice spelling) to boiling water and again, salt and vinegar to make a golden color.

She mentioned the info would be in an issue of a magazine, but not MS. Maybe check her website.

Kim , mom to Amanda (16):, William (13), and Annie (5)
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#10 of 16 Old 03-23-2007, 04:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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[QUOTE=viking;7610299]i boil the eggs in water with the outer layers of onions. turn out yellow with the ... 'regular' onion in it, and pink with redonions.[/QUOT

Do you also use vinegar? Approximately how many onions do you use?
I'm curious, is it tradition in Norway to boil eggs and color them for Easter?
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#11 of 16 Old 03-24-2007, 05:23 AM
 
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Originally Posted by clogmama View Post

Do you also use vinegar? Approximately how many onions do you use?
I'm curious, is it tradition in Norway to boil eggs and color them for Easter?

I have not used vinegar before, cause i did not know much about how useful product vinegar is (and baking soda) until half a year ago when i stumbled upon this lovely forum and became a regular reader. I finally got to register
I will deff try vinegar this time around, to make the color stick more. I also read somewhere that salt should be added to the water for the same purpose, but that might have been some special technique-thingy.

I have used the skins from only 1-2 big onions, but i think i am going to experiment with a whole freaking bunch just to see what happens.

The 'normal' way to decorate easter-eggs in Norway is to empty them and paint with watercolors, and hang them on birch(?) in a vase inside.
My mother used to dye our breakfast-eggs with onionskin during easter, and i presume she learned that from her grandmother and that it is the traditional way to do it. Me myself would like to make a nest or basket filled with naturally dyed eggs for durable spring decoration.

I am not really sure how to boil the eggs for decoration tho. I want them to ... whats the word ... not go all icky and smelly and idontknowwhat, if you know what i mean. I think it sounds like a good idea to empty the eggs before boiling them, but i would like to try some patterns and am afraid the eggshells will break if i try to wrap them in pantyhose-fabric.

Some months ago i read whoknowswhere that if you boil these eggs for hours they will get dried out, and youd be able to store them with the rest of the easter-decors for years to come. Have anyone any idea if there is any truth to this?
Or any other tips on how to make 'durable' dyed eggs?

---

Here are some more articles:

Vegetable-Dyed Easter Eggs - someones blogentry with instructions

How to Boil Eggs for Eating or Decorating

Dyeing Easter Eggs with Herbs

How to Decorate Easter Eggs - with tips on patterns etc
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#12 of 16 Old 03-31-2007, 01:07 PM
 
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Frugal tip: If you want lots of onion skins go to the grocery and ask is you can clean out their onion bin. More times than not they don't mind at all!
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#13 of 16 Old 04-02-2007, 03:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by stellimamo View Post
Frugal tip: If you want lots of onion skins go to the grocery and ask is you can clean out their onion bin. More times than not they don't mind at all!
That's a good idea. Also I've been freezing my onion skins lately and other vegetable remains that I plan to use for dying. Hopefully they retain their dye properties.
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#14 of 16 Old 04-02-2007, 03:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks Viking for all of the links you provided. They are very helpful! It's also very interesting to hear about your Norwegian traditions. Have you figured out yet how to dye empty eggs? I have only used watercolor on empty eggs and have never attempted to cook them.
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#15 of 16 Old 04-02-2007, 06:10 PM
 
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I tried to cook them, and it worked out ok Not great, but it was my first try afterall.
I used skins from red onions. 4 emptied eggs. One egg i wrapped in nylon, with some onioskin and a star-thingy. Another egg i tried to wrap in skin with a rubberband around it. The rubberbband soon snapped off. hehe

I had vinegar, and some salt(just in case) in the water. and skin from 2-3 medium onions.

First thing I noticed was that the eggs floated on top of the water ... they would not sink (my holes were very small and would not let enough water in).
I put a soupbowl ontop to keep them under water, and that kinda did the trick. Although I would prefer a better solution.

After they had boiled for ... 30-40 minutes, it seemed as if they would not get any more color. So i expermiented more by putting both eggs and the colored water in a jar and put the lid on to force the eggs down in the water. Unfortunatly the jar was a bit small and i broke one egg somewhat.
I left them in there for a while.
When i just couldnt wait anymore to find out how it all turned out, I was amazed how different the color got after the 'after-soak'.

I rubbed some rapeseed-oil on them as a finish.

Here is a picture of the 4 eggs, from their best side i must add. hehe

My plan next is to dye 8-12 eggs with regular yellow onionskin, as i think the two colors will complement eachother in the basket. Think i will experiment with different techniques.


Id love to learn about your traditions and see pictures of your eggs too



(my posts on mdc always get way longer then planned ...)
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#16 of 16 Old 04-02-2007, 06:21 PM
 
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Nettles work well too I was dyeing some yarn and tossed a couple of duck eggs into the dye bath with some nettle leaves and the bottom of a pair of tights tied around them.

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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