One of my favorite parts of Easter is dying and decorating the eggs. Every year we do one dozen eggs with a kit from the store and we decorate another dozen eggs in some creatively funky way. This year we went with tie dye eggs.
This isn’t the first year we’ve tie dyed our eggs. The first time we tried it…well, to quote Paige, “last time it was a total fail.” It wasn’t a TOTAL fail. 3 of the dozen we made came out really cool. The rest, well they were a hideous hot mess. All the colors blended together and they looked like blackish poo instead of festive colored eggs.
No worries though, I knew what went wrong. I adjusted how we made them so that this time we’d have stunning tie dye eggs.
The process is pretty simple, and I’ll tell you exactly how I did it so you don’t end up with a hot mess like we did.
Supplies Needed for Tie Dye Eggs
- Hard boiled eggs
- Food coloring (we have both the primary colors and neon colors)
- Paper Towels
- Spray bottle
- Twist ties or small rubber bands
- 1 gallon plastic bags without a zip close (you will need as many bags as you have eggs)
Instructions for Tie Dye Eggs
Start by placing each egg in the center of a paper towel and wrap it up tightly in a bundle. Secure it with a twist tie or small rubber band. You can see how we did it in the image below.
I actually did this step while the kids were dying the other eggs with traditional Easter egg dye. It’s the most boring part of the process and I wanted to keep their attention by allowing them to do the fun bits.
Once all your eggs are in a little bundle you are ready to dye them. I knew from past experience with this that it can get messy so we used a cookie sheet under the eggs to keep the mess contained.
Before we began I let the kids know that they needed to only use to a couple of complementary colors on each egg. This is to keep all the colors from blending into the blackish mess we had the first time.
You can try any colors but we found that the following food coloring worked really well together:
- Red and yellow
- Green and yellow
- Blue and green
- Blue and yellow
Put a few drops of food coloring on each egg. Space them out quite a bit because they will blend in the next step. More is less with the food coloring. You can add more later, but you can’t remove it.
Next, put a mixture of ¼ water and ¾ vinegar into your spray bottle.
Spray each egg liberally with the vinegar and water mixture. You’ll want to get the paper towel completely wet.
As you spray, you’ll notice that the food coloring starts to spread out and blend on the paper towel. That’s great, and it’s exactly what you want to happen. You want all the colors to fill up the paper towel. If you find that there are still white spots on the paper towel once it’s saturated with vinegar add another drop of food coloring.
When you are done, your eggs should look like the image below.
Next take a bag and put it over your hand like a glove. Pick up one of the eggs with your covered hand and squeeze the egg gently over the sink. This is just to get out any excess vinegar. Finally while you are still holding on to the egg, turn the bag inside out so the egg is inside of the bag.
A quick note on the bags we used Baggies, but old grocery store bags would work just as well. Zip close bags would also work, but the plastic is thicker so you may want to squeeze the eggs first while wearing a glove. Then you can put the egg in the bag.
Once all the eggs are in individual bags you can put them in the fridge for at least an hour to let the colors set up on the eggs.
Finally, you can take each egg out of it’s bag and unwrap the paper towel to see the amazing colors that transferred onto the eggs.
It’s really amazing to see how each egg is unique. The eggs even get some of the paper towel pattern on them. We had a ball opening each one up to discover the patterns on them.
Here’s a quick recap on how to make tie dyed eggs:
- Wrap egg in paper towel and secure.
- Put a few drops of food coloring the egg.
- Spray the egg with a ¼ water and ¾ vinegar mixture.
- Squeeze the excess vinegar off the paper towel.
- Put egg in a plastic bag.
- Refrigerate for at least an hour.
- Unwrap the egg and enjoy.
I said earlier that the first time we made tie dye eggs it was a fail. Let me tell you how we messed up. We went crazy with the food coloring. Not only did we use too much on each egg, but we used every color on each egg. So when we sprayed them, many of the eggs had all their colors blended and ended up being a blackish brown. It was UGLY.
You won’t have that problem though if you just follow these simple instructions. If you do tie dye your eggs let me know all about it in the comments.