Updated: Apr 4, 2021
Egg dying has been part of easter for as long as I can remember. Coming from a Ukrainian background we learned about the art of dying Easter eggs. Some of the ones I can remember we so intricate, beautiful and took hours to create. They were works of art that could last generations.
Even though those eggs are stunning, sometimes there can be intense beauty found in a process that can be so simply that one can hardly believe it would be possible. Take onion skin dye. Before I tried it I couldn't fathom that the skin of an onion could dye an egg. But it can!
The Amazing part is that It can be accomplished with things found around your home
The things you will need will be:
Skin of 8-10 onions (mixing up mostly white onions with a few red makes a lovely combo)
Old nylon stocking
leaves, fresh herbs or even weeds found around your yard
2 quarts water
2 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
2 Tbsp salt
The first step is to wet the eggs. This will allow the leaves to stick into place during the dying process.
The next step is to carefully choose the leaves that you think will make the nicest pattern on the eggs and gently place them onto the wet egg. Make sure that any curled leaves get gently pressed into place. The way you position the leaf will be the design on the finished egg.
Next you are going to take and cut up the old nylon stocking. Make it into long enough pieces that you can place the egg inside and then tie up the stocking with some string. Pull the nylon as tight as you can but also be gently enough not to disturb the leave you have placed on the egg. You will tie a string around the nylon to hold it in place. I found this process was best done with 2 people so one could hold the egg and the other tie it up.
There are several methods of dying the eggs. Some people will boil the onion skins and leave them for several hours before using the dye. I went with a slightly different method. I placed all the ingredients including the eggs into a pot and made sure there was enough water to cover the eggs. I brought it to a boil and then let it boil for 10 minutes.
Once it was done boiling I let it cool slightly and then I placed it inside the fridge for 4 hours. This can also be left overnight for richer colours. There are also other variations you can try by wrapping eggs in the onion peels. It will give you beautiful textures. Other options include adding beet root to create a beautiful deep dark red color.
Let me know in the comments if you have tried this before and if you have any other variations on the art of dying eggs naturally. I would love to hear them.