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Egg Carving for Beginners is a step-by-step guide

A woman from Sweetwater who transforms eggshells into art has now written an instruction book

SWEETWATER, Tenn — She has 10 years of experience and has finished about 150 eggs, shipping them all over the world.

"There's really no wrong way or right way to carve. It's just a matter of getting your techniques down that's good for you, that you can use," Katy Wilson said. 

Credit: WBIR
Katy Wilson shows off her favorite egg carving

Carving is almost like creating lace on an eggshell.

To prepare an egg, she drills a hole, empties the contents, and lets the shell dry for about a week. Then Katy uses a high speed engraver to carve and etch, removing layers to reveal different colors. 

Credit: WBIR
Plain emu eggs become beautiful art when a carver removes layers to reveal different colors

"I like the challenge. And the challenge of trying to get as much detail, or as small, the smallest cuts I can get without a break it. And I tried to push the limits on the eggshell, that's, that to me is, is the best part of it," she said. 

Credit: Katy Wilson
Carved egg shells

Now she's sharing her specialized knowledge.

"I didn't know where to start, either. When I started so I thought, I can write a book and help others," she said.

Her book just came out: Egg Carving for Beginners.

Credit: Katy Wilson
Her new book walks beginners through the egg carving process

"It's got step-by-step pictures and descriptions on what to use what first to use. It tells you everything you need to go with pictures so that way you can follow along and complete the egg that I'm showing you in the book," she said. "It helps the new people learn without having a lot of failures like I did." 

Failures? Well, she does break a lot of eggs, usually early in the process. 

"There was one ostrich egg," she recalled. "I spent at least 80 hours on had it completed. And just finished bleaching out the membrane on the inside, and was carrying it back to the table to let it dry and I dropped it." 

She hasn't dropped her love for egg carving. Katy Wilson hopes her book will inspire others to explore the unusual art form.

"Never give up, don't let the egg win. Just keep trying."

Credit: WBIR
Katy Wilson started etching designs into egg shells about 10 years ago