Saturday, March 30, 2013

Celebrations and Natural Egg Dying

It’s Easter weekend - the Chickens are celebrating their one-year anniversary, and so I wanted to do something extra special in the way of egg dying this year.

Munching on new grass shoots-fat and happy- and one year old 

Last Fall I had the amazing opportunity to take a workshop with India Flint author of  Eco Colour – Botanical Dyes for Beautiful Textiles.  So much magical information to digest and process-It’s been months and I’m still percolating ideas. I realized I never shared photos so will soon- promise.

In the introduction to her book India shares that it was experimenting with Latvian egg dying traditions using eucalyptus on cloth that led her to discover the eco-print in 1999. So inspiring- the beauty of humble materials transformed through the alchemy of heat and water- an ancient tradition being passed down and then so beautifully expanding upon. You can peek in on India’s journeys and artistry here.

Tucked into the pages toward the back of the book is her recipe for Dyeing Easter Eggs in the Latvian Manner.

Here is what I did-
I stashed away onionskins for a number of months and then last week I shamelessly stuffed skins from the bins of our market into plastic bags in full sight of other normal shoppers because I didn’t feel I had enough.
I purchased a few green herbs (flat leaf parsley, baby arugula, fennel, which proved a bit too fine leaved) at the market- since my garden is still very much asleep.
Then proceeded...
Lay a leaf on an egg
Wrap the egg in onionskin

The bundles are almost as interesting and fun to look at as the finished eggs

I also wrapped my eggs in strips of fabric (wool and silk) bonus bits to use for embroidery latter)
Bundle and tie off snuggly (I used silk floss shared by our workshop hostess Christine-also a gifted fiber artist.

Layer onionskins in a pan
Put bundled eggs on top
Add more onionskins 
Cover with water
Bring to a boil and then simmer gently for 10 minutes
Let the eggs cool – unwrap and be amazed!

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