Wednesday, March 10, 2010

WIP - Easter Egg Silk Dyeing Tutorial

The Little and I decided to try our luck at dyeing Easter Eggs using silk ties.

You'll need:
100% silk (ties, shirts, boxers)
A tightly woven white pillow case, old sheet, t-shirt, etc.
White vinegar
Twist ties or string
White, uncooked eggs
A non reactive pot.

We found our silk at the Thrift store for pennies on the dollar. Your fabric must be 100% silk. We found the uglier the tie, the better.

Deconstruct your silk ties, shirts etc. into squares large enough to fit around your eggs. Here is a sampling of some of the fabrics we used:

Similarly, take your tightly woven white fabric and cut it into squares large enough to fit around your egg. Smaller eggs work better than the extra large eggs, and you can get more use out of your silk scraps with smaller eggs.

Wrap your eggs first in the silk, right side touching the egg. The right side is the printed side of the silk, or the side you would show the public. Make sure to wrap your egg as tightly as you can - you really want that silk touching the egg.

Next wrap your white fabric around the silk covered egg. Carefully use a string or twisty tie to close the fabric shut. We used jute because that was what we had on hand. Do yourself a favor and find the twisty ties.

Once you have all your eggs tied up in the silk, place them in a non reactive pot and cover them with water. Add 1/4 cup white vinegar. Bring to a boil, and then turn the heat down and simmer the eggs for at least 20 minutes. We've found through many, many dozens of eggs, that 35-40 minutes allows for better transfer (brighter and bolder) of your colors.

Remove the eggs from the water and allow them to cool. Save your silk scraps and white fabric. They can be used again! The silk won't transfer as boldly - but part of the fun is seeing what transpires with each dye batch.

Once your eggs are cool enough to handle, unwrap them and see what colors and designs have transferred onto your eggs. You never know for sure until you unwrap. That's part of the fun!

This project is fun for adults and children alike. My son LOVED helping me wrap the eggs and then finding out what sort of colors our eggs were once they were unwrapped. Have fun!

Yours in surprises,

Simple Mama


  1. Those strawberries are SO cute! I love them! Those eggs are amazingly cool. I wonder if I can thrift some silk ties between now and the weekend...hmmm. The WIPs in blogland this week are SO inspiring. Thanks! :)

  2. Yay you did post them! I love how they came out! What a great idea :)

  3. we did this last year. so fun! we worked on it when my mom was visiting. great project to do with grandparents. thankfully the process was so fun as our two dozen eggs were reduced to just a few in a matter of minutes! my toddler liked banging (crushing) them together and my older child fell on the basket when they were playing with the rest of them. ;)

  4. This is so cool! Absolutely love it.

  5. this looks like a great project!

  6. What a great project. Thanks for the how-to, can't wait to try these with my girls. Great pictures, too!

  7. How cool is that?!?! I had never thought to use silk ties in that way. Do you think you could easily dye other objects with the ties, or is it a special thing with the egg shells being so absorbent to color?

  8. Ladybird...gosh..I don't know. I thought about trying a wooden egg to see. I might test it out this weekend if I have time. I'll report back on my findings. :)

  9. That silk tie thing is crazy cool. Who'dda thunk it?

  10. What a fabulous project! Yet another thing to scour the thrift store for :)

  11. Can you eat the eggs? Silly question, I know.

  12. must get ugly ties immediately! I have 10 white eggs sitting in the fridge right now, a rarity as my girls are all brown layers

  13. What a great idea. I can't wait to try it. I think my big kids will find this very fun.

  14. LOVE THIS. did you eat the eggs?

  15. We did. An inspection of our eggs didn't showed little to no dye transfer - and certainly less than when we use traditional egg dying kits.

  16. We did this on Saturday with my older girls (college and high school). Our thrift store ties were not so cheap but the eggs came out beautifully and it was fun. My older daughter blew out the eggs first so we can keep them if I pack them up carefully!