An eggstra special Easter

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 24 April, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 24 April, 2011, 12:00am


Since ancient times, eggs have symbolised rebirth and the coming of spring. Decorating them as Easter symbols became popular in 988, when Christianity came to Ukraine.

Artists there practiced pysanka, a written-wax batik method that uses traditional folk motifs on eggs that are still made today. In 1290, King Edward I commissioned 450 eggs to be gold-leafed and coloured for Easter. And in 1885, Czar Alexander III commissioned Peter Faberge to make a special jewelled egg for his wife.

Decorate your own eggs to celebrate today, with one of these great ideas. Unlike the chocolate kind, these will last much longer than the long weekend - as long as you don't drop them!

Dyeing to get started

You can use craft dyes or food colouring, or make up your own, natural dyes to brighten your eggs.

2 to 3 tbsp spice or 4 cups or more chopped fruit or vegetable

4 to 6 cups water

2 tbsp white vinegar

Combine spice or food with water and vinegar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil; simmer eggs for 15 minutes.

Pink/red: cranberries, frozen raspberries, red onion skin

Yellow: turmeric, curry powder

Orange: paprika, chili powder

Purple: cranberry juice

Blue: blueberries, red cabbage, red grape juice

Brown: coffee, black tea

Photo eggs


Photos printed on copy paper

Gel medium (found at craft stores)

Old nylon tights

White vinegar (locks in colour; use with dye-kit or food/spice-dye)

1 Paint eggs with a layer of gel medium and allow to dry. Repeat.

2 Cut photo to desired shape.

3 Apply third layer of gel medium and while still wet, stick on photo.

4 Wrap egg in tights to secure photo to egg; allow 24 hours to dry.

5 Remove tights and, with wet fingertips, slowly peel off paper. The photo should stay on the egg.

You can paint around the photo with dye or leave white.

Simple silhouettes (pictured)

Sticker paper (or old stickers and labels)

Fine-tip scissors


White vinegar


Optional: stick-on jewels

1 Draw silhouette in pencil on sticker paper and cut out.

2 Place sticker on egg - use the back of a spoon to ensure a tight bond.

3 Dye egg desired colour.

4 Remove from dye bath and let dry.

5 Peel off sticker carefully.

6 Embellish with jewels for added bling.