Lavender Ironing Water: Ask Annie

Dear Annie,
I thought you, if anybody, would know an old folk formula for making herbal ironing water. I am an old hold-out for ironing my sheets and would love to instill a fresh, totally natural, scent. Ideas? –Sally, MA

Dear Sally,
You are right, I know about many thousands of folk formulas, but the answer to this comes courtesy of a lovely review book I have, The Clothesline, by Irene Rawlings et al. Here is what they recommend in this gem of a book:

The simple addition of homemade lavender water to your laundry sprinkler or spray bottle allows this wonderfully fresh scent to fill the air every time you sprinkle or spritz.

Making Lavender Ironing Water
3 oz. 90-proof vodka
12 drops pure lavender essential oil
12 oz. purified water

Sterilize a 16 oz. bottle by boiling for 10 minutes or running through the pot-scrubber cycle in your dishwasher. Pour the vodka into sterilized bottle, add lavender essential oil. Swirl vigorously to mix and let stand for at least 24 hours. Add the purified water. Pour into a spray bottle and enjoy the lavender’s refreshing scent while you iron. Store in the refrigerator. Keeps for six weeks, after which it gradually loses its scent.

Caution: Do not use this in a steam iron.

Adapted from The Clothesline, by Irene Rawlings and Andrea Vansteenhouse (Smith Gibbs Publisher, 2002).

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Tanya W.
Tanya W.2 years ago

Sounds gorgeous thanks.

Ajla C.
Past Member 3 years ago

hvalana receptu

Kat Eldridge
Kat Eldridge3 years ago

thank you a scent that takes me back to sweet memories. I can't believe that I have not made this in years

ii q.
g d c.3 years ago


Susan S.
Paul Stephan3 years ago


Michele Wilkinson

Thank you

Tim Cheung
Tim C.3 years ago


Lydia Price

Thank you so much for the recipe. (I'm old enough to remember this being used!)

Nimue Pendragon
Nimue Pendragon3 years ago


Danuta Watola
Danuta Watola3 years ago

Thank you for the information