Easy Batik-Art Eggs

Make a Ukrainian Easter egg ("pysanky") using a wax-resist process and simple design elements.

Batiking Eggs at Easter is Ukranian Tradition

Batiking Eggs at Easter is Ukranian Tradition

Materials and Tools:

extra-large white eggs - keep at room temperature
stylus (kistkas), medium or heavy
aniline dyes
egg blowing kit
disposable plastic gloves
aluminum foil
drying rack or cardboard and thumb tacks
paper towels
glass jars


1. Tear small pieces of beeswax and insert them into the well of the stylus.

2. Hold the wax-filled stylus the over flame of the candle.

3. Once the wax is molten, draw geometric figures over the surface of the white egg.

4. Mix aniline dyes according to package instruction, adding vinegar to help set the color.

5. Using a spoon, lower the waxed egg into the gold dye.

6. Lift the egg out of the dye, and blot it dry with a paper towel.

7. Continue the design by drawing a concentric geometric figure within each of the original designs drawn on the white egg.

8. When the inner geometric figures are completed, lower the egg into the scarlet dye for one second, and lift out. The egg will now be orange. Blot the egg dry with a paper towel.

9. Connect the inner and outer concentric shapes with a squiggle or free-form design. When this has been completed in each of the shapes, dip the orange egg into the scarlet dye and let it remain there for three minutes.

10. Lift the scarlet red egg out of the dye. Blot the egg dry, and then wax over all of the negative or empty spaces between the geometric shapes.

11. Lower the scarlet egg into the black dye jar, and allow it to remain there for three minutes or until it is completely black.

12. Remove egg from the black dye, and blot it dry. To remove the wax, hold the egg to the side of the candle flame. Allow each area of the egg to get heated and melt.

13. Wipe off the melted wax with the tissue. Continue going around the egg until all of the wax is melted off.

14. To give the egg a shiny coating, put on a pair of plastic gloves. Dip two fingers into the open can of polyurethane. Pat the palm of the other hand with the liquid, pick up the egg and roll it around in two hands completely covering the surface with the polyurethane.

15. Create a small tripod by sticking three thumbtacks through a piece of cardboard, forming a small triangle. Place the egg on top of the thumbtacks. This will allow the air to circulate around the egg. The coated egg will dry in six to eight hours.

16. To blow out the egg, make a hole at one end using the drill from the egg-blowing kit or a Dremel tool. Pierce the yolk with a long straight pin or the needle of the egg-blowing tool. Pump air into the egg with the egg-blower or create a second hole, and blow the egg out through the other end. To thoroughly dry out the egg, set it in a warm oven for one hour.

Note: Adults should do the dyeing and de-waxing processes to avoid egg breakage.

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