Ukrainian Easter eggs, also known as Pysanky, are quite lovely. They are decorated using an ancient Eastern European style, where you use a stylus to write with wax on the eggshell. The results are very detailed, and beautiful.
While Ukrainians have seemed to perfect the process, anyone who has the patience, and is willing to take the time and make the effort, can make Ukrainian eggs. Here’s how:
First you want to prepare your supplies. You will need a copper kitska (stylus), wax, a candle, a pencil, dyes, a hairdryer, and tissue.
You want to let the egg warm to room temperature. You are not going to cook the egg, if you do, it will start to stink after a while. Instead, leave it raw, and let it sit out until it reaches room temperature.
Next, you want to wipe your egg off with vinegar. You should use a vinegar water solution of half a cup of water and a tsp. of vinegar. Then, dab the egg dry.
Once the egg is dry, you want to use your pencil to draw the design you want the egg to have onto it. Ukrainian Easter eggs are often very complex, and have detailed designs. Choose a pattern off the Internet that you want to follow, or come up with your own. Just make sure you draw it on lightly so that you do not see pencil markings when you are finished.
Next, you want to take your stylus, and heat it by holding it over a lit candle for at least thirty seconds. Once it is hot, you will scoop up some wax, and melt it into the stylus.
Once the wax has melted, it is time to start by drawing on your pencil design for the first color. Trace over parts of your pencil design with the wax. Then, you will put the egg into the lightest color of dye you want your finished product to have, such as yellow. Then, let it sit in the dye for a while, usually about 15 minutes.
Once the time has elapsed, you are going to want to get the egg out of the dye, and use your tissue to dab, not wipe, it dry. You do not want to upset your wax.
Now, put on your second layer of wax, covering different portions of your egg, and continuing your pattern or design. Then once again put it in the dye, only this time in the next lightest color. So, maybe orange. You are going to continue this process from the lightest to the darkest dye. By the time you are finished, your egg may be nearly completely covered in wax, and will look black.
Let the egg dry completely, then once it is all the way dry, hold it under a hair dryer, so that the wax is heated, and you can wipe it off with a tissue. What is left will be a Ukrainian designed Easter egg, beautifully decorated.
After a while the egg’s insides should dry up, or you can blow the egg out, using a syringe, just be careful not to damage your hard work.
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