21 March 2010

Herbal Oil Infusions

In January, I took a class on winter skin remedies at my local co-op.  Ever since I got on my herbalism kick last summer, I've wanted to try out making some body care products, but to be honest, I was a little nervous about trying it on my own.  Taking this one-evening demonstration class was just what I needed to realize that it's seriously not that hard to do this stuff on your own.  I'll get to more details about what I made once I get the photos back later this week.  

One of the ingredients in a few of the products that we made in the class (lip balm and healing salve) was an herbal infused oil.  Last summer, when I was first starting to think about all this stuff, I planted some medicinal herbs in my garden- including calendula and lavender.  I dried the flowers from those plants and had them stored in jars all fall, until I finally got around to covering them with olive oil and parking the jars in a sunny window for about six weeks.  

Now that spring is upon us, and I had my first community garden planning meeting this afternoon, I'm starting to think about what medicinal plants I want to grow this year.  So far I'm planning on more calendula, lavender (I'm hoping for even more blossoms this year), chamomile, and feverfew.  I'm sure I'll come up with more as I start to finalize my plans for planting.  

And, as for my herbal infused oil...the lip balm that I made in the class is just about finished.  I picked up this book at the library this afternoon, and at first glance there are some pretty amazing looking recipes.  Also, have you all seen Amy's e-mailorder #11: Potions and Concotions?  It even comes with printable labels!  I downloaded a copy right away and am already hooked on her favorite tea and can't wait to try more recipes.  

{PS: Spring Manifesto should be coming this week.  I've been having some technical difficulties, so a new banner will follow soon.  I was out of town last week and will be again next week, but I'm hoping things will settle down soon and we can return to regularly scheduled programming.  Thanks for hanging around!}


  1. oh, you. this is so great. you've inspired me in so many ways! i have started the seeds for many herbs in our garden & i hope to make many medicinal teas for the winter... perhaps i should add skin care to my list of to-dos as well!

  2. Oh, I have been wanting to make calendula oil for so long! Awesome julia! I think I am going to try planting some of these plants as well.

  3. i love this, and the continued inspiration to make one's own... i'll have to add this to the no-poo routine i learned about through you, and the homemade deodorant a la angry chicken.

  4. How do you use that lavender oil?
    I found out that I have a few lavender plants in my frontyard, in the new home, and I certainly could learn a few more ways to take profit of them!
    Also, I've been told that they are pretty easy to reproduce. I will try that soon.