DIY Quilter’s Salve Recipe

a tin of salve with quilting thread

This is a hand salve that I made for my mom, an avid quilter.

Originally, I wanted to make her a quilt block soap to match, but that proved to be more of a challenge than anticipated, so I haven’t gotten that part quite yet!

(Fun fact: My mom helped me start the quilt in the background of the photo above before my daughter was born. She’s 17 now and my quilt still isn’t finished! It’s on my bucket list though!) :)

This salve would make a great gift for the quilter in your life!

It only requires a few ingredients and I’ve even included some pretty labels that you can print out for your salve if you’d like.

Easy DIY Quilter's Salve Recipe
My friend Kristi from Stone Family Farmstead made that adorable chicken pin cushion. :)


To print this recipe, scroll down the page until you see a green “Print Friendly” button.

  • 1.75 oz (50 g) oil (see *note)
  • 0.25 oz (7 g) shea butter (or mango, avocado or cocoa)
  • 0.25 oz (7 g) beeswax

* You can use any type of oil you like here, such as: olive, sunflower, sweet almond, rice bran, jojoba, hemp, avocado, etc.

I like to infuse my oil with herbs first. Dandelion, goldenrod, comfrey and arnica are some of my favorites for hand salves.

DIY Quilter's Salve with baby bear quilt


Combine all of the ingredients in a small canning jar or, for easier cleanup, an empty tin can. Place the jar or can down into a small saucepan that contains an inch or two of water.

Set the pan over a medium-low burner and heat until everything is melted. Don’t overheat or your shea butter could become grainy.

Remove from heat.

If you’d like to add a couple drops of essential oil for scent, you can do so now. Lavender is a really nice choice, as is lemongrass, or perhaps peppermint or rose.

Pour the hot salve into small tins. I used a 2-ounce screw cap tin from Specialty Bottle for the salve shown.

Tip: If your salve is too firm, you can melt it again and add a little more oil. If it’s too soft, you can melt it again and add another pinch of beeswax. 

free printable labels for DIY Quilter's Salve


HERE is a page of multi-colored labels that you can print out on sticker paper (I use THIS KIND) (<- affiliate link) and is sized to fit 2-ounce tins or canning jar lids.

Tip: Select the “fit to page” print option for tins and the “actual size” option for a tiny bit bigger label that does well on canning jar lids.

How to Use

Salves are somewhat heavy so do best when applied at night. Rub a very thin layer all over your hands in the evenings and wake up to softer, smoother hands!

You may also like:

Rose Petal Salve | Dandelion Salve | Herbal Intensive Lotion Bars

Dandelion Salve Recipe
three tins of lotion bars




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  • Build Your Own Salve eGuide
  • 18 Herbs & Flowers for Salves Chart
  • Salve Building Printable Worksheet
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  1. thanks for sharing this recipe. I work for a company called Granite Gear sewing backpacks. I made this for myself and my coworkers. We all get dry and split skin in winter. This salve has been a great help to us this winter.

  2. Jan I made the eczema cream and it fabulous ! Turned out perfectly too! I have you soap books but trying to expand. Looking for an arthritis cream any suggestions?

    1. Hi Amy, I’m so glad to hear that you like the eczema cream!
      Here’s a recipe from my Handmade Lotions & Creams eBook collection that I like:
      On my to-do list is to make a blog post about making MSM pain creams, so hopefully can get that up sometime this year to expand on the topic.
      We also get a lot of great feedback on Spicy Salve (a recipe my daughter created for her hypermobility pain, but several relatives & friends use for arthritis & joint pain too):

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