Dyeing Wooden Objects–Eggs, Clothespins and Crosses
The glowing yellow cross is a beautiful object for children to embellish and own. The eggs remind us of new life; and the flowers and butterflies help us think about the light and beautiful nature of our souls. These, and a lovely “basket,” are quintessential parts of an Easter celebration for children. The crafts below are fun for families to do together. You’ll have a wonderful time decorating the crosses with your children, as we get closer to Easter and Christ’s Resurrection.
Easter eggs, beautiful yellow crosses, and paper butterflies can all be easily made with simple raw-wood craft supplies. Buy natural, unpainted wooden eggs, clothespins, and crosses. Add large-size coffee filters to the dyeing process and you have flowers and then, butterfly wings. I discovered a simple way to use food coloring to dye the wooden supplies, which I bought at Michael’s, along with most all of the supplies shown below. The coffee filters are the size used for group-size coffee makers. I got these at Smart & Final.
Use a strong food coloring, as pictured below. Fill a large ZipLock bag with about a half cup of water. Squirt a few drops of food coloring into the bag and a dash of white vinegar to set the color. Shake to mix. Add the wooden objects and make sure the dye covers them. Wait a few minutes and drain through a colander. Dry on paper plates, or use your dish rack, as I do. Mine is metal so it doesn’t get dyed, too.
The natural wood eggs come in bags of five eggs for about $6.50 at Jo-Ann Fabric Store.
Decorating Wooden Crosses
Use the same process above to dye the simple wood cross. Use a bit more water and food coloring. When dry, the children can paint the cross with metallic gold paint using their fingers or a brush. I suggest the top of the cross not be painted completely, but rather “dotted” with paint using a finger tip or a Q-Tip. The the children can add a few shakes of glitter onto the cross, over a plate or shoe box to catch the excess glitter.
Creating Flowers and Butterflies
I put about a half cup of water and three big drops of food coloring into a plastic bowl. Stir and add a coffee filter. It’s easier to do one at a time, as they get clumped together as a group. Squeeze out excess liquid and dry on a paper plate or on your dish rack. In about an hour the children can decorate. The decorated filters make beautiful flowers that can be glued to paper, or enjoyed as is. If your fingers get dyed, have no fear. It washes off with a few soap and water washes.
Make a Butterfly
Use a dyed and dry coffee filter. Have the children decorate with markers, watercolors, Do-A- Dot markers, or Kwik Stixs. Watercolors and the daubers need drying time. Feed a dry filter into a dyed and dry wooden clothespin. I hold the rounded end perpendicular to my stomach and it allows me to feed the paper in easily, using both hands.