How to Make Scented Pinecones with Fragrance Oils or Essential Oils

how to make scented pinecones

During the holiday season, you can often find scented pinecones at the store. While many people associate them with Christmas, they actually look great all winter long. That means you don’t need to worry about leaving them out past the holiday season.

You can always buy scented pine cones at the store, but a better way to get festive is to make your own! Scented pine cones are incredibly easy to make. All you need is a plastic dropper and some fragrance oil or essential oil. Today we’re going to show you two different methods for making DIY scented pine cones. Follow along as we make this fun and easy project!

Supplies & Ingredients

  • Several pinecones
  • 1 oz fragrance oil or essential oil of choice
  • Plastic pipette
  • Nitrile gloves
  • Newspaper or parchment paper for work surface
  • Gallon size zip loc bag (optional)

If following the spray bottle method below, you will also need the following:

Choosing a Fragrance

Most store-bought scented pine cones have a cinnamon fragrance. Cinnamon is a great scent for the holidays, but we love this project because you can easily customize it with any fragrance you like. Get creative by using any of our warm and woodsy fragrance oils to scent your pinecones! You can also use essential oils to scent pine cones.

For this project, we’re keeping it classic by using our Cinnamon Spice fragrance oil. This fragrance smells just like the scented pinecones you can buy at the store – only better!

how to find pinecones

How to Find and Prepare Pine Cones

During the fall and winter, it’s usually easy to find bags of unscented pine cones for sale at craft stores and department stores. Pine cones tend to be inexpensive, and it’s much easier to use store-bought pinecones if you can find them.

If you can’t find pinecones for sale or you have easy access to a woodsy area, it’s also fun to collect them yourself. Pine cones tend to fall off the trees during late summer through fall and winter. However, the weather and climate can affect when pinecones fall. If collecting your own pine cones, be sure to only grab the dry ones that have already fallen to the ground.

If you bought your pinecones from the store, they are ready to use and you can skip right to the next section. However, if you foraged for pinecones in nature, you’ll want to prepare them first. The reason is that pinecones might carry bugs and other things you don’t want to bring into the house. They can also be damp, which makes it much harder to add fragrance. Luckily, it’s easy to prepare them with these steps:

  • Preheat your oven to 200 degrees F.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  • Arrange the pinecones on the baking sheet so they have room between them.
  • Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour so the pine cones can dry out. If they are still damp after an hour of baking, increase the oven temp to 300 degrees F and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. Watch them to ensure they don’t burn.
  • Remove the pinecones from the oven and let them cool completely. Pinecones should be completely cool before adding scent.
How to make DIY scented pinecones

Method 1: How to Make DIY Scented Pinecones with a Fragrance Dropper   

Note: if you want to use essential oils, simply swap out the fragrance in this recipe. You may find that you need only a few drops of essential oil.

  1. Prepare your work space by covering it with newspaper or parchment paper. This protects the area from drips of fragrance oil.
  2. Arrange the pinecones on the paper.
  3. Put on gloves to prevent fragrance oils from getting on your hands.
  4. Use a plastic pipette to deposit several drops of fragrance oil directly onto each pinecone. For small pine cones, use up to 2 ml of fragrance per pinecone. For large pine cones, you can use 3-4 ml of fragrance per pinecone.
  5. Let the pinecones sit overnight on the paper. Alternatively, you can seal them in a plastic zip loc bag and let the fragrance absorb over the next few days. You may find this helps the fragrance last slightly longer.
  6. Once the fragrance is completely dry and absorbed, place the pinecones in a bowl or display them using your preferred method.

With this method, the pinecones should hold their scent for 2+ weeks.

Watch our quick video showing how this method is done! P.S. be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more fun videos!

Method 2: How to Make Scented Pinecones with a Spray Bottle  

For this method, you will need a few extra supplies. See the ingredient list above.  

  1. Cover your work space with newspaper or parchment paper to prevent drips of fragrance oil.
  2. In your mix & pour funnel pitcher, combine 1 oz of fragrance oil with 3 oz of Body & Room Spray Base.
  3. Pour the fragrance mixture into your fine mist spray bottle and screw on the lid tightly.
  4. Wearing gloves, spray the fragrance mixture onto each pine cone. You can use several sprays per pine cone. To prevent wasting mixture, you can hold the spray bottle close to the pinecones. Be sure to save the remaining fragrance mixture in the spray bottle for later use.
  5. Let the pinecones sit overnight on the paper or until they’re dry. Like the other method, you can alternatively place the pinecones in a gallon zip loc bag to let them cure for a few days.
  6. Once the pine cones are completely dry, they are ready to use for your decorations.
  7. When the pinecones begin to lose their scent, simply freshen them up by spritzing them with the spray bottle. Be sure to do this over paper to protect your work surface, and let the pinecones dry completely before decorating with them again.
how to decorate with scented pinecones

How to Decorate with Scented Pinecones

DIY scented pine cones are as fun to make as they are to decorate with! There are so many ways to get creative with scented pinecones. Here are a few fun ideas:

  • Glue the pine cones to a string to create a festive garland.
  • Arrange pine cones on your fireplace mantle.
  • Place the pine cones in a decorative bowl to create a centerpiece.
  • Create a wreath out of your pinecones.
  • Put the pinecones in a tall glass vase – try mixing them with small Christmas ornaments for a holiday centerpiece!
  • Place the pinecones into your Christmas tree to boost its scent.
  • Make different batches of pinecones with different holiday scents – change out the pinecones
  • Make pinecone ornaments to hang on your Christmas tree.
  • Decorate your pine cones with glitter to make them even prettier.
  • Paint the tips of the pinecones white to make them look snow-covered.
  • Glue a pine cone to the center of your holiday presents instead of attaching a bow.

Did you like this project? You might also enjoy our DIY Linen Spray Recipe!

NorthWood is not responsible for projects you make with our supplies, recipes, or informational resources.

how to make scented pine cones
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