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How to dye eggs naturally for a new Easter Zentangle tradition

With Easter and Passover approaching next weekend, thoughts of decorating eggs might be on your mind.

According to Martha Stewart, “The tradition of dyeing eggs goes back to medieval times when people made ‘pace’ eggs to celebrate spring and Pasch, the original name given to Easter or Passover.

In the past we have enjoyed learning how to tangle on plastic eggs in the Sakura-produced video featuring Texas CZT Angie Vangelis.

Today we’re taking a look at how to dye real eggs naturally. Whether or not you want to tangle them once you’ve dyed them, finding natural alternatives without using artificial dyes is really very easy.

It’s done the old-fashioned way with simple items from your pantry and refrigerator: spices, teas, coffee, fruits and vegetables.

Photo courtesy: The Spice & Tea Exchange®

In this tutorial on The Spice & Tea Exchange® blog, we learn two ways to dye eggs naturally. The first method is by cooking and coloring the eggs at the same time. The second is by coloring the eggs after they are already hard cooked.

The blog notes that the “depth of color, generated from any natural substance, will vary depending on a number of conditions” and gives several things to keep in mind:

  1. For best results use distilled water.
  2. To extract the maximum color out of the produce, i.e. spice, tea, or produce, boil it for at least 1-15 minutes. This will assist in achieving richer, more vibrant colors.
  3. Generally the eggs soak in the natural dye overnight to achieve the deepest, richest colors.
  4. “Keep in mind that artificial dyes are relatively flavorless. When you switch to using a natural dye such as spices, teas, or produce, these items have flavor to them. As a result, your egg may retain a small amount of the dying agent’s flavor.”

In addition to step-by-step instructions on how to dye eggs naturally either uncooked or previously cooked, The Spice & Tea Exchange tutorial provides a list of spices, teas, and produce to use to achieve various colors of the spectrum.

There are other tutorials on the internet on this subject, here are the ones I found to be the most useful:

  • Martha Stewart – Dyeing eggs naturally. “Natural dyes can sometimes produce unexpected results, so don’t be surprised if, for example, your red-cabbage dye yields blue eggs.” Martha’s article also gives a color guide to help you achieve the color you want.
  • Rodale’s Organic Life – How To Make Natural Easter Egg Dye Out Of Fruits, Vegetables, And Spices. This article gives instructions on how to blow eggs out to dye the empty shells. It also includes another color guide using various fruits and vegetables, spices etc.
  • Better Home & Gardens – All-Natural Easter Egg Dye Recipes. With gorgeous photos and more tutorials, “Awesome Easter Egg Dyeing Ideas You MUST Try”, this is a great resource too.

Once you’ve produced your beautiful naturally-dyed eggs, you can tangle or not as you desire.

If you decide to dye some Easter eggs naturally and tangle them, send me your tips and photos [linda [at] tanglepatterns [dot] com] and I’ll share them with our Zentangle community!

Check out the TUTORIALS tab on the pink alphabetic tangle menu bar for many more excellent tutorials on TanglePatterns.com.

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