Far & Away

Homemade Lavender Soap

Before we flew to Croatia for our summer holiday this year, I had read that the islands we were hoping to visit grew lots of lavender and that you could take excursions to the farms to see them in peak season. Now, I know full well that visiting lavender farms wouldn’t have been high on Andrew’s priority list, or most people’s, but I had this image of us driving a scooter around the island with the smell of lavender in the air, purple hills rolling in the distance, Yann Tiersen playing in the background, that whole European cinema vibe thing. When we got to Hvar I found out we had just missed the lavender season and that they had celebrated the big lavender festival in late June – gutted. Despite my disappointment, and Andrew’s relief, there was still so much to buy because the crops had just been harvested. There was still that smell in the air that I had daydreamed about when we walked past the market stalls and of course I bought as much as I could. Now that I’m home and I have given most of the lavender away to a few bewildered family members (I don’t think anyone seems to appreciate lavender or its smell as much as I do), I’m left with bags of the stuff that will more than likely sit in our spare room alongside our other souvenirs unless I think of ways I can use them. I’ve been planning on making my own soap for a while and have had molds and goat’s milk base waiting patiently to be used for the last number of months. Having an abundance of lavender seemed like the perfect opportunity to create something lovely with my lonely apparatus and it turns out that it is embarrassingly simple! I chose to use a little lavender oil, some honey and lemon zest with my fresh lavender to bring out as many good smells as possible (my sense of smell is shocking so I need to double the quantities of recommended servings of essential oils in order to smell anything)! The recipe only requires a few things you might not have lying around but I got base and molds from Amazon so it’s not too difficult! I plan on giving these out to friends at a dinner party this weekend. I love that when I say dinner party it sounds like a sophisticated gathering but really it’s just a bunch of girls drinking wine and talking about their dogs. Speaking of, I’m the only one without a dog and this weekend we’re looking after my sister’s Cocker Spaniel, Bella, who I hope will win Andrew over and make him realise that dogs are just about the best thing that can happen to anyone! I hope the girls will like them because I’ve been loving the smell they have brought in to the house. I still have lots of lavender to use though so next up I think is Lavender Pillow Spray to help Andrew with his midnight insomnia i.e. our insomnia… stay tuned to see how that goes!

  • 2lbs goat's milk melt and pour soap base - you can find some here
  • 3 tbsp dried lavender
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 20 drops essential lavender oil
  • 1 lemon zested
  • 1 bowl
  • Silicon mold - you can find some here
  1. Break up the soap base in to small pieces and melt in the microwave making sure not to burn
  2. Add essential oil and mix thoroughly
  3. Add dried lavender, honey and lemon zest. Mix thoroughly.
  4. Pour in to mold and wait about an hour for the soap to set
About Author

I'm Alex, the writer, photographer and creator of The Full Shilling. I started writing as a way to share all my favourite places in Ireland and the list just keeps growing! My aim is that you'll find somewhere new to explore and you'll make some great memories along the way. Happy reading!


  • Alex Donnelly
    5 years ago

    Next time you're down to Armagh let me know and I'll whip some together!

  • Laura
    5 years ago

    Keep some for me lavenders my all time favourite xxx

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