Eggs to be coloured and decorated can be raw, blown hollow or hard-cooked. You can make coloured eggs, funny faces, animals, or Christmas ornaments using eggs. Decorated eggs used as ornaments should have the contents blown out.
Food Safety Note: If coloured hard-cooked eggs are to be eaten, be sure to use only non-toxic colouring dyes on the shells (e.g. food colouring) and do not leave the eggs unrefrigerated for more than two hours.
Egg Blow Out
Egg Yolk Paints (egg tempera)
Note: Egg yolk paints can be used to paint designs on sugar cookies before they are put in the oven, or to paint faces or designs on bread before making sandwich or toast. Pop bread into toaster to dry the paint.
Hold the egg in one hand. With brush and acrylic, paint the upper half of the egg. Place egg in egg carton and let paint dry, at least 1 minute. Holding the egg again, paint the other half. Let dry in egg carton.
Food colouring, natural colours, commercial egg dyes, and water-based felt pens can be used for colouring eggs. If using food colouring, for each colour, mix 175 mL (3/4 cup) of water and 5 mL (1 tsp) vinegar and 1 mL (1/4 tsp) food colouring. Add food colouring one drop at a time until you obtain the brightness that you desire. Completely submerge the eggs until tinted the colour you want, from 2-5 minutes. Remove the eggs from the water and allow to dry before adding another colour or continuing to decorate.
Tongs are a handy tool to use for dipping raw or hard-cooked eggs in and out of the water. An easy way to colour a blown egg is to thread a thin piece of wire through a hole made at both ends of the egg. Bend the wire at one end so the egg won't slip off. This makes a handy tool for dipping the egg in the dye and hanging it to dry. A cake rack is also useful for drying eggs.
Egg Decorating Tips
How to decorate an egg
First, using an acrylic paint, cover the egg with a uniform or patterned layer of colour and allow to dry. To paste on a design, use regular woodworking glue to add a small amount of pasta, rice, or beans in the shape of a butterfly, star or letter of the alphabet. Allow to dry for 30 minutes before painting the design.
Use wax crayons, magic markers or paints (acrylics, tempera, enamel or poster paints) on your eggshell. Then coat it with clear nail polish to prevent smearing. To make the eggshell glisten, use pearl-coloured nail polish. For a porcelain finish apply many coats of Elmers glue diluted with a bit of water, over the egg and any designs. Allow to dry between coats and before finishing with a fixitive spray or lacquer. Any eggs you wish to keep can be coated with spray lacquer or acrylic sealer.
For egghead faces, use felt pens and paints or dye eggs flesh colours of brown, pink or yellow. Glue on ribbons, lace, buttons, cotton balls, wool, sequins, macaroni, feathers, glitter, pencil shavings, fabric, yarn, dried plants, buttons, or jewellery.
To make stands for decorated eggs, glue on small plastic curtain rings, buttons, spools, stones, pieces of wood or bottle caps. Strips of coloured heavy paper can be rolled up until small enough to hold an egg and secured with tape.
Egg Shell Mosaic
Recycle broken eggshells to create pretty mosaics. Prepare a variety of dye colours in plastic containers. To dye eggshells, simply immerse them in a little amount of hot water with a few drops of food colouring. A drop of vinegar added to the water will help set the colour. (Leaving the shells in for varied lengths of time will create different shades of colour to work with). Remove shells from dyes and spread them out on paper towels to dry. When the shells are dry, gather the different colours in separate containers.
The shell pieces should be arranged in the basic mosaic design before beginning to glue. When satisfied with the mosaic placement, the shell pieces can be glued into place with white glue. If you prefer a shiny glaze on the completed project, use a clear spray lacquer to coat the entire mosaic.
Egg Carton Art
Use the same materials as for egghead faces, plus popsicle sticks, pipe cleaners and toothpicks and make an entire zoo of animals come to life.
Various animals can be made by using pieces of odds and ends found around the house. Here are some ideas:
Colour egg with black or brown felt pen. Glue on beak made of triangle of construction paper. Use two small stones for feet.
Dye egg pink. Glue on miniature marshmallows for 4 legs and snout. Make a curly tail from a pipe cleaner. Draw eyes with a felt pen.
Glue on large pink ovals of construction paper for ears. Add a pipe cleaner tail; draw on whiskers and eyes with a felt pen.
Dye egg blue. Glue on Construction paper beak and tissue paper wings and tail. Draw eyes with felt pen.