How to Decorate Easter Eggs Ukrainian Style!comments (9) April 16th, 2014
Decorating eggs was one of my favorite crafts when I was growing up...and they weren't just for Easter-we made them year-round! We would all gather around a table covered with a plastic drop cloth. It was a kid's crafting paradise. In addition to the bowl of eggs, jars of different-colored dyes, spoons, stacks of paper towels, and little cone-shaped metal writing tools, there were a couple of candles burning...and I couldn't wait to get my hands on them! Normally we were not allowed to play with fire, but to decorate the eggs you had to scoop the softened wax into the cone of the writing tool to draw your design. (Thinking back, I am surprised that none of us got burned...or worse.) I remember the glow of the flame as it played on the glass jars-it was magic!
I haven't decorated eggs in years, so I decided it was time, especially because it fits into this month's theme of Craft by Nature. I got really excited about doing this project. I dug out my old writing tools (technically, they are called "kistka"). They come in different sizes-the larger ones have larger holes to make a thicker line of wax. I didn't have any dye left, so I went to the grocery story and bought some Paas egg decorating kits. I was surprised to see that they included all kinds of fun stuff in addition to the dyes, like colored sand and stickers. (I'll save that for the girls to have fun with later!) The downfall to these kits is that you are limited to a few basic colors-green, red, pink, blue-and they don't work as well for this technique because you actually dye the same egg over and over with different colors as you draw more details with the writing tool. Happily, my mother came to the rescue...she had a couple of "authentic" Ukrainian easter egg decorating kits, so I ran right over and scooped them up. Now I have exciting colors like royal blue and scarlett! If you want the real deal, you can visit the Ukrainian Gift Shop; they have all the supplies you need to make beautiful eggs!
One more funny thing...as a kid, I just remember decorating my eggs; I didn't realize that there was some advanced preparation involved. I sat down with my egg decorating kit, all excited to get going, then I read the directions. I needed eggs at room temperature; mine were still in the fridge! I took them out to warm up and continued to read. I needed boiling water, so I put a pot on to boil. Then I read that distilled water worked better, so I had to go to the grocery store and get some. Finally, I sprinkled each color dye into a wide-mouth mason jar and added 1-1/4 cups boiling distilled water and 1 tablespoon of vinegar (I got lucky there). The final kibosh to getting started was that I had to wait for the dye to cool to room temperature! (This experience has given me a new love and appreciation for my mom, who always made our crafting adventures seem effortless and instantaneous when I was little!)
Here's what you'll need:
- One Luba's Ukrainian Easter Egg Decorating Kit, which includes dyes, writing tools, and beeswax (I highly recommend getting one of these kits because it's filled with tips and design ideas)
- Wide-mouth glass jars that are easy to get eggs in and out of
- A candle that you can use to heat the writing tool
- A good supply of tissues
- A pencil
Start by making the dye as described above and get those eggs out of the fridge to warm up to room temperature. Here's a picture of my hot dye...I moved them outside to cool faster.
After you make this project, show off your work to other members!
Post your project in the gallery