Easter Eggs to Dye For

The Abstract Art of Grateful Living with Paula Angermeier

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This year, my Easter egg obsession started early. I blame Instagram, where you can find marbleized eggs, decoupage eggs, stenciled eggs, and eggs dyed naturally with coffee and onionskins. Over the years I have tried all these techniques with varying degrees of success. I don’t recommend the stenciled eggs unless you have the patience of Job, the manual dexterity of Edward Scissorhands, and the ability to cope with disappointment shared by Clemson basketball fans.

This year, my egg decorating goals are simple. First, all three grown children will be home to celebrate Easter, and we’ll decorate eggs on the deck, weather permitting. The eggs they dye will match their personalities and not my decorating scheme, and that’s what makes it fun and charming.

My second, but still attainable, goal was to color some eggs the perfect shade of robin’s-egg blue to decorate our Easter table. I started with a Paas egg-dying kit, which I bought after Easter last year for 17 cents, and a dozen hard-boiled eggs. I dropped the green and blue tablets into glass bowls filled with water, poured in the white vinegar, and waited. Nowadays, all kinds of fancy egg-dying kits are available, but I like the simple process that includes the prickly smell of vinegar and the effervescent sound of fizzing.

Into the blue, into the green, back into the blue, and so on until each egg was a slightly different color. To complete my project, I planned to spatter the eggs with tiny speckles. Since I was in such a thrifty mood having used my 17-cent dye kit, I thought I could use leftover coffee for the speckling process. Unfortunately the coffee didn’t adhere to the eggs. I scrounged around and found a bit of brown watercolor paint in the “art drawer,” and began spattering with an old toothbrush. When the tiny specks had dried, I turned the eggs over and repeated the process.

The turquoise eggs really complemented the blue and white setting of the Easter table, and I think they’d also look terrific with traditional spring pastels, subtle neutrals, or a modern orange or bright pink table setting.

Years ago, the Mister and I picked up some vintage Easter postcards at an antique shop. I had no idea how we’d use them, but I decided to put one at everyone’s place setting. It’s become a tradition. The illustrations are dear, but the best parts are the handwritten notes, which occasionally take a bit of deciphering.

My favorite card, dated 1912, reads, “Friend Orrie, I hope you enjoy Easter as well as a year ago. Just think where we were a year ago. They are very busy here now preparing for the show. Sincerely yours, MOS.”

I’d love to know where they were a year ago. And I wonder what show they’re preparing for. Rather mysterious, I think.

Even more mysterious is God’s great love for us. I pray you celebrate that love with joy this Easter.


By day, Paula Angermeier is the head of communications for the Greenville County Museum of Art. Follow her on Instagram @townandcountryhouse.

 

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