Cooking Projects for You and Your Kids: The Complete Guide to Decorating Easter Eggs

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Hand-decorating eggs is the best Easter crafts project for the whole family
The Complete Guide to Decorating Easter Eggs

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Most Easter projects are all about chocolate and candy: from making Easter baskets, to baking chocolate Easter nests, to running around collecting chocolate eggs on an Easter egg hunt. Sitting down to decorate delicate egg shells is a fabulous sugar-free way to entertain the whole family in the build up to Easter.

The Complete Guide to Decorating Easter Eggs

The Complete Guide to Decorating Easter Eggs

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Most Easter projects are all about chocolate and candy: from making Easter baskets, to baking chocolate Easter nests, to running around collecting chocolate eggs on an Easter egg hunt. Sitting down to decorate delicate egg shells is a fabulous sugar-free way to entertain the whole family in the build up to Easter.

Select a Range of Eggs

Select a Range of Eggs

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Rather than just using the same standard eggs, add some easy variation to your Easter decorations by decorating eggs of different colors and sizes. Use quail eggs for tiny decorations, or for larger ones try a goose egg, or maybe even an ostrich!

Blow Out the Eggs

Blow Out the Eggs

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If you want to keep the eggs to reuse every year, and if you want to be able to hang them up around your home, you need to blow out the eggs, rather than hard-boil them. To blow out an egg, use the tip of a small, sharp knife to pierce both ends of the egg. In one end, carefully turn the knife in the hole to make it a bit bigger. Then poke a needle or a pin through the larger hole and wiggle it around to break up the yolk. Obviously, this is a job for the grown-ups. The kids can start helping out from now on. Holding the egg over a bowl, with the bigger hole facing downwards, take a small straw and place it over the smaller hole. Blow into the straw so that the insides of the egg pour out the bottom of the shell. Keep doing this until the egg is empty.

Clean and Dry the Eggs

Clean and Dry the Eggs

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Get a glass of water and pour it over the egg, making sure some water runs through the hole. This will clean the outside and inside of the egg. Stand the egg shells up in an egg box and let them dry gradually for at least 24 hours, or bake them in the oven at 300 degrees F for 10 minutes.

Prepare Your Work Surface

Prepare Your Work Surface

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When the eggs are dry and you’re ready to decorate them, it’s time to set up your work station. You’ll need a large, flat surface, whether it’s your kitchen counter or your dining table. Take a big sheet of craft paper and cover the whole table with it, taping it down at the edges. This will stop you from worrying about making a mess, and make the clean-up process a lot easier as you can just rip off the paper and throw it away. Set out all your tools, paints, pens, glitters, paint brushes, and glues, so that everything is ready for you to get to work.

Dye the Eggs

If you’re going to dye your eggs, then prepare for things to get a bit messy, and make sure you put an apron on! In a heatproof bowl or cup deep enough for you to completely submerge the egg, mix together one teaspoon vinegar, 20 drops food coloring, and one cup just-boiled water. Using tongs, carefully pick up the egg and place it in the dye. Then gently remove the egg and leave it to dry on a wire rack or in the empty egg box. To vary the brightness of the egg, you just need to hold the egg in the dye for more or less time — anything from just a few seconds or up to 10 minutes.

Glitter the Eggs

To make a glamorous, sparkling egg, you can either use an egg that has already been dyed, or a plain egg shell. Empty your glitter into a deep bowl. Take a dry egg shell and brush craft glue all over it. Put the egg into the bowl of glitter and using a spoon either turn the egg in the glitter, or pour the glitter all over the egg until it is as coated as you want. Remove the egg from the bowl and place it on wax paper or baking parchment to dry for at least an hour.

Paint the Eggs

Paint the Eggs

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If you have young kids, or are worried about how difficult dyeing eggs is going to be, swap the dye for some paints or metallic pens. Using these other ways of decorating eggs gives you much more ability to control how your egg ends up looking, and means you can make pretty, intricate designs very easily. We love these simple painted polka dot eggs, or these pretty bubble-wrap printed eggs. Just make sure that you handle the egg gently, and allow each layer of paint to dry before adding more decoration.

Hang the Eggs

Hang the Eggs

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There are so many beautiful ways to display your pretty, hand-decorated eggs. In baskets, in a glass vase, but our favorite way is to hang them around the house. To be able to do this, you need to attach a string or ribbon to the egg shell. If you’ve blown out your eggs, this is quite easy: Thread a large needle, and tie the thread or ribbon on to the needle. Drop the threaded needle through the top of the egg. A simple trick to get the needle out the other side of the egg is to hold a magnet below the hole at the bottom. Gently shake the egg as you do this to encourage the needle to move in the right direction, and the needle will soon appear through the hole. Carefully pull it through, cut the needle off the thread and tie it in a bow or a knot big enough to stop the thread popping back inside the egg shell.