The Best Way to Decorate Easter Eggs - Easter Egg Decorating Ideas
Decorate Easter Eggs the Old-Fashioned Way
I can't help it. My favorite way to decorate Easter eggs is the old-fashioned way (at least, old-fashioned to me). When I was a kid, we would fill different cups with water, throw in some food coloring, write on the boiled egg with a crayon or birthday candle, and then drop the egg in the dye mixture. Since then, stickers, food coloring kits, and other fancy-schmancy ways of decorating eggs have come along.
If you really want to have fun with your family, though, pull out the food coloring and start making all kinds of cool colors. It's fun to experiment. To me, this is the old-fashioned way, but my mom shared with me the really old-fashioned way my grandmother dyed eggs. It's pretty interesting.
How my Grandmother decorated Easter Eggs
My grandmother, according to my mom, used crepe paper to color eggs. She tells me that the crepe paper came in packages somewhat like tissue paper (for gifts, etc .. . ) comes in now. She bought red and green crepe paper with which to make Christmas tree decorations, and what was left over she would save to use at Easter.
After Grandma boiled the eggs, she would cool them off in cold water, lift them out of the water one by one, wiping them with a dry piece of colored crepe paper. The dye in the crepe paper came off nicely onto the eggs. Neat, huh?
Funny Easter Fact from my mom's childhood
When my mom was a kid, the only time she ever got to drink soda pop was on Easter. That seems odd, huh? She tells me that her daddy would always bring home a 24-bottle crate of RC Cola and Nehi. His reason? They needed the pop to wash down all those boiled eggs!
FYI: Crepe paper for Christmas decorations
In case you are wondering, I'll let you in on my grandmother's secret of using crepe paper for Christmas ornaments. She would cut an inch off the ends of three papers and string them end to end. Then she would tape them all together and braid them loosely. to make a garland of sorts. My mom says that it made the prettiest old-fashioned "rope" to drape around the tree. The mice would usually find these homemade garlands in the decorations box before another year rolled around and shred them into pieces for their beds. So, according to my mom, my grandma had to buy the crepe paper every year. She suspects, though, knowing the frugality of her family, that it was pretty cheap!
Why add vinegar to dye for Easter eggs?
I have seen the recommendation in to add vinegar to the water and food coloring for egg dying. Why? To "set" the dye better. I couldn't tell you if this tip helps, as my mother never used vinegar. I asked her, just to make sure. We didn't use vinegar, and our eggs turned out just fine.
My Mom's Way of Decorating Easter Eggs
My mom became more "modern" than her mother, opting to use food coloring instead of the old crepe paper. After boiling the eggs, she would drop them one by one into a cup of cold water colored with food coloring. It didn't take much red in the water to make a pink egg or green or blue to make light shades of these colors, but Mom says that it took a lot to make a yellow one. She experimented with different amounts of food coloring and water until she was satisfied.
We would usually just guess on the amount of dye to use, adding more to make the color darker. We would also experiment by mixing colors, such as blue and red to make purple or red and yellow to make orange.
The back of the box of food coloring with the basic green, yellow, red, and blue colors will generally give "recipes" for various colors. The box of food coloring in my cabinet has a chart telling the number of drops of each color required to make the basic colors or shades of others.
We would do more than just dye the eggs. The fun part was decorating them with sayings and pictures of our own creation. I remember drawing on the boiled eggs before soaking them in the dye. We used birthday candles or crayons. We couldn't see what we were writing, so it was always exciting to see how it all turned out once the rest of the egg was dyed around the wax. My brothers and I would try to surprise each other with our clever messages and designs.
When we thought the egg was dark enough, we would lift it out of the water with a spoon. If we wanted it darker, we would put the egg back in to soak longer, and we might add more food coloring.
Egg Decorating Kits on Amazon
What about Egg Coloring Kits?
Later on, my mom became even more modernized and did buy the egg-coloring kits to try. These nifty kits had their own dyes plus a wax pencil with which to write and draw designs on the eggs before they were dropped into the colored water. These kits operated from the same principle as our old-fashioned way, but they did cost more.
We eventually tried those stick-on things once but didn't really like that. It just wasn't creative enough. So back we went to dying our own Easter eggs.
What is your favorite way to decorate Easter eggs?
My Favorite Way to Decorate Easter Eggs
One more easy and cheap way is to totally cool and dry the boiled eggs and draw on them with crayons and water colors. Still, my favorite way was the water and dye thing. It was a fun family activity.
I hope you enjoyed reading about some old-fashioned ways to decorate Easter eggs. What is your favorite way?