My friend Lindsay is having a crafty little contest on Thursday and I thought I’d throw my name in the hat. I consider myself pretty thrifty, but when you are forced to stick to a $5 dollar budget in this contest, you must get very resourceful.
So I got my craft on the other day and made some paper maché Easter eggs using what I already had in my house – which is tricky when you only have brown eggs and very thin tissue paper. But my kindergartener and I managed to hatch a fresh batch of blue eggs on the cheap.
Disclosure: I was completely unsure when I started this project if it would be a disastrous waste of time, so I decided to invest nothing beyond what I had on hand, which meant using brown not white eggs. Or you can just use store bought plastic eggs, but I’m cheap. Unsure of the outcome, I refused to brush my hair, my teeth, or get dressed out of my flannel plaid pajamas to make a special trip to the craft store or grocery store. In hindsight, white eggshells would work better to save time and several layers of tissue. Just saying.
First things first. Poke a little hole in your eggshell to drain your egg whites and yolk.
I used a martini pick. See, they’re not just for my cocktails. They multitask.
Rinse out your eggshells and allow them to drain in a very scientific contraption involving a strainer and a bowl.
Once the eggshells are dry, mix your glue with a few tablespoons of water to make it sort of glazy. Yes, ‘glazy’ is a word just in case you were wondering.
Cut up a bunch of strips of tissue paper in strips about 3/4 inch wide. Or so.
At this point, channel your inner fourth grader because you’re about to paper maché. Or maché paper. Whatever is grammatically correct. Do not look back. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.
Gingerly paint your eggshell with the glazy watered down craft glue with a small paintbrush, then start applying your layers of tissue paper. Glaze and glue, glue and glaze. Layer, layer, layer.
I’m gonna guesstimate it’s about 15 to 18 strips of tissue per egg and it takes about five minutes to cover each one. Maybe more. With a kindergartener, I can guarantee a solid fifteen minutes per egg. And very gooey stubby fingers. And frustration and drama at the end of egg #1 which requires Mom to take over and finish the project that was supposed to be a bonding experience but has become a tedious craft.
Your eggs will get all wrinkly in some parts. The texture cannot be avoided due to curvaceous nature of an egg when you wrap tissue around it, but you can minimize with more moisture and thinner strips.
For more vivid color, you could ‘kill two birds’ and add some craft paint to your glue – they do blend rather nicely. This also will give you colored eggs if you only have white tissue paper on hand.
Allow to dry on plastic for several hours and arrange in a charming little nest.
Total cost: half dozen eggs $1.50; tissue paper $1.50
= $3.00 total.
If you’ve got a great Dollar Store craft, link up to Lindsay’s Dollar Store Challenge, scheduled for Thursday March 25th, finalists to be selected by three great bloggers.
The final burning question is what do you do with all of your egg whites and yolks ? Why you make a gourmet scramble of course. Mix in some cheese, tomatoes, and fresh herbs and float away to brunch heaven.
In conclusion, any craft that has an edible ending certainly has my vote. :-)
Bon Appétit !