northstory + co.

DIY Scented Wood Ornaments for Christmas (makes a great gift topper!)

I am always looking for fun little crafts to do for the holidays but I am also a big fan of of crafts that are uncomplicated. So while every year we try to make some new baking soda dough ornaments, sometimes they can be a bit of a theatrical production to get done. Introducing, DIY Scented Wood Christmas Ornaments !

No baking. No mess and I break down all the scents and oils and how they look on the wood in this tutorial.

DIY Scented Wood Christmas Ornaments

Now, one of the things for me that makes Christmas time so nice are the smells of the season. The cinnamon, the baked cookies and the warm, rich vanilla’s. So I thought of a really fun easy (and way less time consuming version) of the Scented Baking Soda Dough ornaments.

Enter Scented Wood Ornaments. They’re a spin off from my tutorial on “How to scent wood” except you don’t have to hide them in your closet or car, but instead they make your Christmas tree smell like you know how to out bake Martha Stewart. That is not me by the way. Me and Betty Crocker are like BFF’s.

I even did a little experimenting for you to see how the oils change on the wood.

Step 1 – Buy wood ornaments

Go to Michael’s or your local craft store. Heck go slice a small tree limb that you found on the floor of your local forest and get yourself some wood slices.

Step 2 – Get some scented oils

I have everything from food scents to essential oils. Winners, Marshall’s, HomeSense, your local Mom, everyone sells these. Food scents I buy at my local Bulk Barn.

I don’t know what Festive Cheer smells like but I am sure it’s wonderful.

Step 3

And I cannot stress this enough – TEST YOUR OILS before you apply them to your wood ornaments. They will change the colour of your wood and in some ways very unexpectedly. Just like I tested out the stains on our old butcher block counter top (God I miss my old kitchen) you need to do the same here.

I did some testing for you on some coffee stir sticks that I don’t use for coffee at all. Just crafts.

Cinnamon Oil. Yellow in the container, clear on the wood.

Orange Scented Oil – orange in the container, slightly orange on the wood

Raspberry and Strawberry oils – red (pink) as anticipated

Peppermint Oil – clear but very poor scent (use an essential oil in this if you want Peppermint – the below is not one)

Perfume – my favourite scent from Bath & Body works. Not much colour change, but the scent didn’t last long at all.

All of them for comparison.

I have also used Vanilla and it was clear but again not as much scent. I find that the spicier scents – the cinnamon’s, citrus, lavender, lemongrass, orange – all emit better scents. Now, I wanted at least one orange one so for the sake of this post I tried it out on the entire snowflake ornament.

All you do is get a small dish, put some drops of oil on it and paint the ornaments with a paint brush. The oil is easily absorbed.

They obviously went a little yellow/orange.

If you’re all “But I want orange scented ornaments but I don’t want an orangey ornament” take note. There are two things that are ok with this.

First, if you have a red or gold themed Christmas tree, it will not look as jarring as you think. See? Kinda blends in not so badly. Our tree this year is blue and silver but that’s another post.

The second option is just to add the scent to one side and not the other. Just be careful not to move the ornament over wet oil spots to avoid this (see below).

I decided to go with cinnamon for the rest because I love cinnamon and it’s very Christmasy. If it was spring and air freshener for the car, I’d be all over the Lemongrass.

Here is a comparison of the 2 oils with the Cinnamon one on the left and the Orange one on the right.

And believe me, four little ornaments painted with cinnamon oil were so potent that when my kids came home from school, my daughter was like “Mom what did you bake?” LOL. That’s funny. Me and baking. Nice try.

People are going to see this photo below and think but you didn’t use actual oranges and cinnamon to scent the wood. Why are they there? No. But I’ll bet you’re now imagining the smells of oranges and cinnamon more easily than looking at a liquid bottle. Oh the clever tricks our minds play on us. Hashtag #marketing!

They also make excellent gift toppers. Or you can also try these cinnamon ones I made last year.

If you’re feeling a bit more Martha Stewart like and want a different look and have more time, try the Scented Baking Soda Dough ones. I find Baking Soda dough to be way better than salt dough for a variety of reasons and I explain that in the tutorial for these.

Let the Christmas crafting season begin. Now where’s my Bailey’s??

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  • Reply
    November 16, 2016 at 7:24 am

    These look amazingly easy to do. I am going to try. Maybe it will clear the air of wet dog.

  • Reply
    November 6, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    Does the scent last very long if using cinnamon or pine essential oil?

    • Reply
      November 6, 2018 at 9:46 pm

      My personal favourite is cinnamon or a citrus. Anything with a zesty sharp scent will last longer than a more subdued scent. I’ve taken these out after years in the basement bins and I can still smell them, though not as much as the first year. The first year it was very potent.

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