scented herbal play dough

I really love this time of year. There is no holiday let down for me, we keep the twinkle lights up so we can enjoy their sparkle during these dark and gray Ohio days and decorate the mantle with hearts where the stockings used to be. I love the fires in the fireplace, snow on the ground, pink cheeks, hot chocolate, and the pink and red colors of Valentine’s day coming up. I really love Valentine’s Day and making it special for my little ladies.

We felt the need to bring a little spring into the holiday this year with scented herbal dough. I made a batch of pink rose petal scented dough and Fauna made a batch of purple lavender scented dough.

You need:

1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
1 cup water
1 tablespoon canola oil (or any other oil you have on hand)
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
3-4 drops essential oil (we used rose and lavender)
food coloring (we used purple and red)
2 tablespoons dry  herbal leaves or flowers (we used lavender buds and rose petals)

To make:

1. Add a couple drops of the food coloring into the 1 cup of water.
2. Put flour, salt, cream of tartar, oil, and tinted water into a medium sauce pan.
3. Cook the mixture over medium heat until it bubbles, stirring constantly until it thickens.
4. Remove from heat then stir in a few drops of essential oil and the dried herbs or flowers.
5. Put the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth.
6. You can store any leftover dough in an airtight container or leave the creations out to airdry.
     *They take about a week to dry and they will fade in color a little bit. The lavender dough has kept its scent the best.

 Fauna  made some snails, Araina made a cat with a bed and ball of string, and we all made hearts.

We strung the hearts to hang in our windows and on bookcase knobs (don’t forget to add holes if you want to string them).

“That’s all,”


  • February 15, 2011 - 8:31 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for sharing this great idea! Preciously I had done one without the essential oil and now you had inspired me with new this idea! I had copied a picture, your recipe and steps to my blog, please let me know if I can’t do so. Thanks.

  • February 3, 2011 - 5:13 pm | Permalink

    next time you can try using beet powder for colouring, natural & gives a great purple!

  • Pingback: Delish Valentine Playdough: Crafting With Kids : KamloopsParents

  • January 26, 2011 - 9:05 pm | Permalink

    The addition of petals really makes this so nice.

  • January 25, 2011 - 8:40 pm | Permalink

    I am so glad I’m not alone in my Ohio winter love! Hearts strung along the mantle might make my heart beat even faster.

    Happy (belated) new year to you and yours,


  • Robin
    January 22, 2011 - 10:44 am | Permalink

    The photos are so yummy looking I can smell the dough!

  • January 21, 2011 - 4:23 pm | Permalink

    Uhm, I want to eat them!

  • January 20, 2011 - 9:57 am | Permalink

    Really lovely! I like your “Valentine’s post”!

  • Mandy
    January 19, 2011 - 9:13 pm | Permalink

    sooooo pink and lovely

  • January 19, 2011 - 8:38 pm | Permalink

    I love this. We love making our own play dough. I was just thinking today it was time to make more. I’m going to give this recipe a try. I’ll need to head to the store for more supplies first.

  • January 19, 2011 - 2:32 pm | Permalink

    I love this time of year, too. This is such a great idea for my girls to bring to give to their classmates on valentine’s day.
    I can imagine the smell right now.

    …And all your little valentine’s cats and fawns are super cute!

  • Kerri
    January 19, 2011 - 2:11 pm | Permalink

    We are in Ohio too and I dislike the gray days. Seems so drab right now as all of the snow has melted here.

    LOVE your idea and hope to try it! Your snail turned out so cute!


  • January 18, 2011 - 1:56 pm | Permalink

    Ooh that looks fabulous! I love the herbs- that’s super fun! Thanks so much, I’ll be linking.

  • January 17, 2011 - 8:27 pm | Permalink

    Such a sweet idea! We’ll be trying this too. Any other V-day ideas traditions you have with your little ladies?

  • January 17, 2011 - 12:50 pm | Permalink

    I never thought about using herbs and oil in play-doh. I can’t wait to make a bunch of this for my nephews and Sunday School peanuts!

  • January 17, 2011 - 12:35 pm | Permalink

    This dough is so beautiful! I’ll have to make this with my kids, I think we would all really enjoy it! I already put all my Christmas decorations away, but after reading your post, I think I might dig out the white lights and hang them back up. We really could use some lights to warm up our evenings, as it’s so cold, snowy and dark here (Alberta!).
    Thanks for sharing the dough recipe!


  • January 17, 2011 - 12:03 pm | Permalink

    That looks so pretty. Bet it smells great in your kitchen right now too!

  • January 17, 2011 - 11:20 am | Permalink

    I’ve been meaning to make playdough with my girls, and this will be perfect!
    Thanks for the inspiration :)

  • January 17, 2011 - 9:21 am | Permalink

    ~as i was clicking over…lavender came to my mind…therapeutic playing with play dough and then adding lavender to calm one wee little and well here you have done exactly so…never even thought prior of doing such!!! thank you for sharing this recipe with us…adorably sweet are your littles creations…we too keep are twinkle lights up for a soft festive glow…i wish you wonder and delight in your day ahead…much love light and blessings be with you and yours~

  • January 17, 2011 - 7:00 am | Permalink

    I love the playdough idea/recipe. Very creative and fun! I hope to try it soon. We’ve done salt dough not too long ago and homemade cinnamon dough ornaments – we are ready to try something new. Thanks for this wonderful idea :-)

    Jen and family

  • January 17, 2011 - 12:55 am | Permalink

    I love making playdough. I’ve never thought of making rose scented with flower petals, thanks for the super idea! We are going to add this to our activities next month.


  • January 16, 2011 - 7:32 pm | Permalink

    I love to scent it with oils, too. :)
    Though I haven’t yet tried tossing in herbs for decorating – love that idea.

    Also – wanted to tell you that I keep white icicle lights around our front room window (on the inside) all throughout winter. (It looks especially lovely with hanging hearts.)
    Love that.

    Wintertime should definitely have little white lights!!

  • January 16, 2011 - 7:15 pm | Permalink

    We were going to do a similar thing for teacher Valentine’s gifts but I like this even better! Thanks!!!

  • January 16, 2011 - 7:03 pm | Permalink

    Ooh thanks! We’ll definitely try this soon!

  • January 16, 2011 - 6:32 pm | Permalink

    We do this exact same recipe at our house, and it is SO fun! We also love to decorate with cinnamon dough sculptures at this time of year, and since the girls just received a beautiful vintage tea set from their great-aunt (isn’t that the best person from whom to receive a vintage tea set?), I’m thinking that next week will be spent making oven-dried play dough goodies.

  • Comments are closed.