Thursday, March 23, 2017

Throwback Thursday - Egg Etching Step by Step Instructions

In 2015, I was lucky enough to supply a Lithuanian Magazine "Bridges" which step by step instructions for etching eggs the Lithuanian way.  For today's Thursday throwback, I though I would provide those photos and instructions once again. 

1. Egg Preparation:

I personally like to etch blown out eggs.  That means the inside contents are already removed.  The contents are removed first, the egg is cleaned, and finally the egg is dyed and dried.  

When choosing my eggs, I look for eggs with no pimples, grooves, or unsightly bumps.  Not only do they make the egg unattractive, but they also create areas where the blade could catch and crack the egg when etching. 

After the egg is blown out (I use an egg blower), I clean the inside of the egg with HOT water.  This ensures all the egg insides are out so the egg will not smell later. The egg is cleaned with a baking soda and water paste, then washed in vinegar.  This will give a clean surface for the dye to adhere to. 

I hold the egg in a dye bath with tongs. When the egg is the color I want, I dry the egg on a drying board. 

2. Draw and Outline Design: 

I draw the design I wish on my egg with a pencil.  This gives me an outline to follow with the blade.  

Then I take the blade, hold it like I do a pencil.  

**You will see in the photo I hold the blade backwards.  This is not preferred by many people.  Hold the blade the way you feel comfortable.  The key is to simply have the blade to the side as to not dig into the shell, cracking it. 

I use a towel to push the egg on, giving me stability that is still safe for the eggshell. 

3. Shading: 

Once the egg is outlined, I shade the egg with either the same blade or another blade that was recently opened.  The sharper the blade, the easier it is to shade detailed lines. 

Once complete, I use an eraser to clean up stay pencil marks. 

At this point the egg is complete.  You can spray the egg with acrylic or another clear protection layer.  I personally do not do this.  I am not a fan of shiny eggs and like the look of a matted finish.  

If you put another hole in the top of the egg you and string a ribbon through to make your creation into an egg ornament. 

Now that you know the basics of egg etching, I will be excited to see if anyone would post an egg they etched here!  I see creations online far better than my own, and would love to see yours. 

This type of egg art is dying.  Not many people try it as much as pysanky.  I started seeing more people learning this craft in the past couple years, and I hope the interest will continue to grow. 


  1. These eggs are beautiful! Thanks for sharing your process!

    1. No problem! I hope you had a wonderful trip to Japan!

  2. These are beautiful! Just what I was looking for!