How to Make Pysanky Easter Eggs

A simplified version of decorating these Ukrainian Easter eggs!

WHAT YOU NEED

12 empty EGGSHELLS
Vinegar
Pencil
Boiling water for each dye cup
Acid dye or food coloring (acid dye will produce brighter colors)
Small bowls or plastic containers for dye cups
Spoons
Kistka (a stylus with a small funnel tip, used to hold and draw melted wax onto eggs)
Candle
Melted beeswax
Matches

Directions

  1. Lightly RUB eggs with vinegar to prep the surface. DRY completely. DRAW pysanky designs on the eggs, very lightly, with a pencil. SET aside.

  2. COMBINE 1 cup boiling water, 1 tsp. of distilled white vinegar and about 20 drops of food coloring of your choice per dye cup. ADD one spoon into each dye cup and LINE UP the cups on your table. ORGANIZE your dye colors, from light to dark.

  3. PUT the kistka head over a candle to heat it up. SCOOP up a little beeswax using the kistka. REHEAT it over the flame until the wax is melted. SEAL the holes that were created when the egg was emptied.

  4. Using the kistka, COVER the lines on the egg that you would like to remain white with the melted wax.

  5. DIP the egg in the lightest color dye until it’s saturated and LET dry. If you want to add another color, use the kistka wax to COVER the areas as needed. DIP the egg in a different, darker color dye. To add more colors, REPEAT as needed. LET the egg dry.

  6. REMOVE the wax by placing the egg above a candle. WIPE the melted wax off with a napkin. This is how you remove the wax covering the eggshell itself and lower-level colors.

Insider Info

Use vinegar on a napkin to erase the pencil, if needed. The pencil’s eraser can destroy the egg’s surface.

Search “pysanky egg designs” online and many options will appear. Start with simple beginner designs and work your way up to advanced.

Always cover your work surface with a few layers of paper towels or newspaper to protect your table from dye stains.

Traditionally, these are made with white eggs, but you can easily use brown eggs.


Emptying eggshells can be tricky. Learn how to do it like an egg decorating pro here.


This egg decorating style was simplified by Christine Burd in partnership with The Incredible Egg.