Crafts, Eco Family

Easter Craft: Okonorm Egg Dye & Watercolours

When I was planning this activity with Arthur, he kept asking me “are the eggs dead Mummy”. We had long discussions around how the egg wasn’t alive etc etc. He kept asking, and asking…and asking. Then I suddenly realised, I had told him we were going to ‘dye’ the eggs and therefore assumed that they would then be ‘dead’!

Anyway, if you are looking for nice quick and easy craft that children of almost any age (under supervision) can enjoy, then this may be it.

I discovered Okonorm when I bought some of their modelling clay from Babi Pur for a stocking filler for Arthur for Christmas. If you hate play dough as much as me, then you will love this. I hate that play dough gets everywhere, tiny little bits all over the carpet and it just drys out rendering it completely useless. Okonorm make an eco clay made with waxes, paraffin, purified natural chalk and eco dyes. Although the colours are bound to get mixed together, you can still use it time and time again. All their products are environmentally friendly, non toxic and made from sustainable resources.

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The egg dye kit is super quick and simple and lots of fun too. At £3.95 a pack its a very affordable activity. The set contain five colours – red, yellow, green, orange and pink. You can dye about five eggs with each sachet, any more means a less intense colour. Just remember that the natural pigment from the egg shell will affect the ultimate colour and this will vary quite a bit. I found the lighter colours (orange and yellow) only changed the eggs I used very subtly, but achieved a more intense colour from the pink, green and red.  The dyes are made of completely natural ingredients (curcumin, chlorophyllin and cochineal natural food colours and rock salt) so perfectly safe to eat, and gluten free. Here’s a quick step by step guide but it’s really very simple (if you follow the instructions):

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  • Pour 750ml of cold water into a stainless steel saucepan – don’t use enamel pans as they will be stained by the dye.  Add one dye sachet.

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  • Place 5-7 eggs in the saucepan, ensuring they are covered by the water.

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  • Bring to the boil, stir the dye and allow to boil for 7-10 minutes.

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  • Remove the eggs from the pan and set the colour by running under cold water. You can experiment with different timings and colour intensity.

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It really is as simple as all that! You can decorate however you choose but a nice way to  make patterns is with damp cotton wool or cotton bud. We made Dino eggs!

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As the yellow and orange had a less impressive colour we decided to paint them with our Okonorm watercolours. I like to break our craft into bite sized chunks in order to maintain Arthurs interest and this activity seemed to work really well. It also meant I got to have a little paint and play too!

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I absolutely LOVE these watercolours. All you need is a pot of water and the paint. They make hardly any mess and can be cleared up really quickly which is pretty important when you have a kid like Arthur that 2 mins into an activity has had enough! I’ve since bought the 12 set.

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Interestingly, I also bought some duck eggs to try out, thinking white would give the most intense colour. Wrong! The dye hardly took at all. So personally I’d stick to your lovely free range chicken eggs.

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Pros:

  • Good value
  • Quick and easy
  • Non toxic, sustainable, environmentally friendly
  • Edible

Cons:

  • Less intense colouring from the orange and yellow
  • Needs supervision for boiling water

 

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Thanks to Babi Pur for providing the egg dye kit. All other products purchased by me and all opinions are my own.