With the spring season in full swing and Easter upon us, this means that you need to dye your eggs soon! Instead of opting for the classic egg-dyeing technique this Easter, you can do that in more interesting way – with leaf prints. We don’t know one kid who doesn’t love collecting leaves. This project will allow them to discover the amazing variety of leaf shapes that can be found in your backyard. Ferns and groups of small, delicate leaves work well. It’s easy! Send your kids out into the garden to collect small leaves and flowers. Once the kids are done with their nature hunt and then bring them together to decorate the eggs. Have fun doing this super fun Easter craft with your kids during the holidays!
For the project, you will need: hard-boiled white eggs, glasses for dyes (wide enough to hold an egg), a spoon, colourful dyes, a twist tie, old panty stockings, and leaves. The smaller the leaves are the better result will be. For example, you can use fern, dill, thyme, cilantro or mint leaves.
Preparation: Purchase eggs from a refrigerated case. Buy eggs before the “sell by” or expiration date on the carton, and always open the carton to make sure all dozen eggs are clean and uncracked. Boil eggs and let cool in a bowl of cold water while you prepare your dye colours. It’s best to use older eggs to boil because the shells will peel off easier when they’re ready to eat! For each dye cup use 1 table spoon vinegar, ½ cup of warm water and 10-20 drops of food colouring. Adjust measurements to dye cup size. After you boil the eggs, run immediately under cold water. Let dry and gently rub the eggs with a little white vinegar.
Step One: Take your stockings and cut 4-inch squares. As shown on the picture, lay a leaf on an old panty stocking and put an egg on top. Press the leaf onto the egg and flatten with a 4 square inch piece of pantyhose. Use a twist tie or sew the pantyhose together so that the leaf is pressed down snug against the egg and no dye can leak under it. Make sure it is tight!
Step Two: Put your eggs into the dye and let sit for 15-20 minutes, or according to the dye package instructions. The longer it sits, the darker the colour will be.
Step Three: Use a spoon to remove the egg from the dye and place it on paper towels. Let them dry before taking off the pantyhose and removing the leaf. Allow the egg to dry completely before taking off the stocking! If there is not enough sun, then use a hair dryer to dry the eggs completely. If they are not dry when removing the pantyhose then it will not work. Be mindful not to scratch the egg as the dye can rub off if it is still wet. Also, make sure the leaf side of the egg is not touching anything while drying. After every egg is thoroughly dry, gently pull off the leaf. Last but not least, rub with a little oil for shine. Your leaf print is ready!
If planning to eat these decorative eggs, they will need to be stored in the refrigerator during the drying process. It is recommended that hard-boiled eggs sit out for no longer than two hours if they are going to be consumed.
When the actual Easter day is over, though you are probably curled up on the couch in a pile of exhaustion, there are still a few things you need to deal with. Like what exactly you’re going to do with all those leftover Easter eggs with Leaf Imprints that your kids haven’t eaten yet. You’re probably wondering how long you can keep your Easter eggs for without them spoiling and making your entire house smell less than pleasant. If refrigerated, hard-boiled eggs usually last for up to a week in the shell. It’s not so straightforward with hard-boiled Easter eggs, though. If they’ve been at room temperature for more than two hours, throw them out. Before you do that, however, make sure you take as much pictures of your lovely Easter eggs with leaf imprints as possible!