Yes we all have memories of the Paas tablet dyes with the coffee cups all over the table that we drop our eggs into and wait for our brightly colored eggs to come out of.
Some of us got creative with the wax crayon and were able to come up with designs and two or more colors but for the most part the Easter Eggs of the past were just solid unnatural colors that are unusually bright and stir up the energies of the coming spring and excitement for the looming summer vacation.
What if we took a departure this year and tried something new that is actually old, less toxic. Yeah I know we don't actually ingest these toxic dyes, and it's only a small exposure once a year, and we expose ourselves and our kids to much worse on a regular basis but this could actually be a fun departure to a greener cleaner side!
Trying something new (old)
There are many natural dyes that people have been using for thousands of years, think of the egyptians, the royal purples of the kings, the reds of the pharasiees, the yellows and indigo's of Van Gogh's paintings. You could actually turn this into a science and history project to last for the next few weeks learning about all the pigments, where they came from, what their significance is.
You could get Biblical and use items from biblical times or you start experimenting now with found items to see what their dying qualities are if you have an older child needing to do some chemistry lessons.
Spinach makes green
Blueberries make blueish
Teas leave behind the color of the tea – there are many colored teas now from a pink hibiscus to green teas
Saffron makes a yellow/orange
Red onion skins make purple
Remember that the Vinegar is used to Set the color!
Here are some links I have found interesting
For a craftier side all together
Here is a list of the significance of the colors themselves
Check back later for another great idea for the more advanced Egg Heads!