Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs

The tradition of dyeing Easter Eggs is an old tradition that is now replaced buying with chocolate  and plastic eggs filled with Jelly Sweets. Although decorating easter eggs can be dated back at least 60,000 years; in Africa ancient Ostrich Eggs  have been found with engraved decoration. Eggs Decorated in gold and Silver were also placed in Sumerian and Egyptian graves up to 5000 years ago. The Christian tradition dates back to the Mesopotamia, where Christians dyed their eggs Red in memory of Christs Blood.

It was traditional that before lent you had to use up all of your eggs as they were forbidden during the Lent. Days Like Shrove Tuesday, Fat Thrusday and Mardi Gras may have begun as a way to mark the last days you could consume eggs. With the end of lent people then decorated eggs and consumed over Easter to create the easter egg.

While trying to think of a theme for this years easter project, I hit on the idea of Dyeing and photographing my own Easter eggs. You can normally find in the shops some artificial dyes to transform your eggs into brightly coloured edible decorations. I wanted something a bit more natural and decided to photograph naturally dyed eggs. This was part experimentation and part fun because I had never done this before.

Click on the thumbnails to see the pictures in full.
All picture were taken using natural light with either; Canon 50mm 1.8 or Tamaron 90mm Macro 2.8. All pictures were edited in Lightroom Except “Natural Dyed Egg Collection” which was composited in Photoshop.

Because of the natural dye and some mistakes I made along the way, the colour is slightly mottled. At first I was slightly disappointed but the effect actually  grew on me, as each egg has it unique design. The blue was created by using Red Cabbage, the red by using Red Onion skins and the yellow from Turmeric.

If you want to see how I created these Eggs check out Emma’s blog Mommy Emu where I talked to her about how I dyed the eggs.

I would love to know what you think about the gallery and if you have a favourite picture, Let me know in the comments below.

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30 thoughts on “Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs

  1. The eggs look great! I really like the mottled colour. It adds texture and interest. I think my favourite photos are the one where the eggs are arranged in lines because it turns the eggs into a pattern and the first one of the blue and green eggs in the bowl as it seems to mimic a nest and I like that. All the photos are great though.

  2. When I lived in Austria back in the 90’s it was still a strong tradition. We used to glue small leaves on them before putting them in a pot of water with onion leaves. Or use special pens. Loved doing it and love your photos.

    • Hi Raewyn, it is a really nice tradition, I did read about adding leaves and using elastic bands but decided to keep it simple. I’m glad you like the photos and hope it inspires you to relive your younger years this easter.

  3. It is my family tradition to dye eggs naturally, we would collect red onion skins for months. Once the eggs are done, my part was to greese the eggs with a piece of bacon, so they are shinny and smooth. Yours turned out beautifully, I like how every one is unique.

    • I didn’t use bacon but olive oil to polish mine but the bacon smell would be nice when the eggs are on the table. I think it is a great tradition and I will be doing more of them in the future. Thanks for taking the time to comment Lorè.

  4. I like the Complementatry Dyed Eggs and Red Cabbage Dyed Eggs Bowl. I have a red cabbage, I must try that today or tomorrow; and I do love the imperfections.

    • If you want more blue than blue green try using white eggs. They will also stay fresh for 7 days if kept I the fridge after boiling. Hope you have fun with your dyeing and thanks for taking the time to comment.

  5. This is so neat, I am fascinated by the colors you achieved from the various elements. I totally get the turmeric for the yellow, and red cabbage does turn blue if cooked too long… but somehow the red from red onion skins was a new concept to me! 😀 How wonderful! I really like the mottled effect, looks kind of marbled.

    The images are great, I lean towards the macro ones and the ones taken from the side view (rather than straight down). Looks like you had fun both creating the colored eggs and photographing them. 😀

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