Dyeing easter eggs is such a fun craft we’ve all done as kids, but it has certainly come a long way since the days of dipping them in food colouring dyed water.
As I drifted off to sleep one night I thought up the idea of using the dye in tissue paper to dye eggs with instead. Despite it being past my bedtime, I got out of bed to give it a try. Thankfully that lost sleep was worth it. Not only does it work but it’s also a lot of fun.
You only need paper punches if you want precise and consistent shapes like dots, hearts and stars. Otherwise you can cut shapes out with regular scissors.
I used “bleeding art tissue paper” and found yellow and pink to be the brightest colours while black didn’t show up as well. Have an experiment egg to practice different tissue colours on.
Half the fun is creating all the different designs and colours.
1 Punch/cut out your tissue paper shapes. Some examples are dots, hearts, stars, triangles or stripes. You can also draw then cut out your own shapes. Keep in mind that whatever you draw in ink will also transfer onto your egg, so if you don’t want ink on your egg, cut on the inside of the ink line or use pencil instead.
2 If your shape is small without corners (a circle or heart), use tweezers to pick it up and dip it in a small bowl of water. You only want to do this with simple shapes. Step 6 will explain how to do it with stars, triangles etc.
3 Apply the wet tissue paper shape to your egg. The dye will transfer almost immediately so make sure you place it where you want the first time.
4 Dab it with a dry paper towel to soak up extra water and prevent the dye from running.
5 Repeat until the egg is covered
6 Dipping irregular or larger shapes in water first won’t work. The water is too heavy for the tissue paper and you’ll end up with, for example, a star’s five points or a bunny’s ears folding into itself. Instead, place your dry tissue paper shape onto the egg where you want it to be, then dab your finger in water.
7 Gently dab your wet finger onto the shape to get it wet and transfer the dye.
8 Wipe up excess water and dye with a paper towel.
9 The shapes will be ready to remove when they dry and start to lift off the egg. Simply use your tweezers to remove them and your egg is done!
There’s a lot of different things you can do with tissue paper, like colour blocking shown above. Just take a few strips of tissue paper and wrap them around the egg. Use your wet finger to get the tissue paper wet, leave it for about 5 minutes, then remove when dry. I will warn you though, your fingers will also get dyed in the process.
I also pre-dyed some of the eggs the old fashioned way (aka food colouring). I found this made some colours really pop, like the pink hearts on the pale pink egg and blue stars on the yellow egg.