How to make fragrant pomander balls
Before we get started with how to make pomander balls, let's delve into how this tradition of piercing oranges with cloves started and today used as a Christmas time piece of table decor.
So the word pomander is probably derived from the French word "pomme d'ambre", and it used to be a mixture of aromatic substances enclosed in a perforated bag or box and used to scent clothes and linens or formerly carried as a guard against infection (Marriam-Webster.com). This was in the Middle-Ages. they were worn around the waist or neck, or kept in homes as a disinfectant and to ward off diseases. They were mainly seen kept in castles and homes of the wealthy bourgeois as wasting a fresh orange on something like this was a luxury.
Pomanders are an engaging way to beautify the table or deck a Christmas tree keeping it natural and organic.
How to make these fragrant balls?
Step 1: Keep ready oranges, handful of cloves, a toothpick and a knife.
Step 2: Plan a pattern (concentric circles, or a spiral or vertical lines) and carve the pattern out using a carving knife (a simple sharp knife will also do). Remember, the first time it may seem difficult and time consuming, but that's the case with any craft. It just gets better with time and practice.
Step 3: Pierce holes using the toothpick wherever you will stud the cloves. You can stud the cloves directly but this just makes it a bit easier.
Step 4: You're done! Now hang these up on the Christmas tree or let them adorn the table in a basket with pine cones and greens and tea lights. A beautiful centrepiece, natural and fragrant.
You can store these in a paper bag for a couple of weeks to make them last longer. Stud them with lots of cloves as they are a natural preserving agent. They'll shrink in size a little as the cloves help them dehydrate. You can also dust them with cinnamon which is an anti-fungal too.
Hope you enjoyed reading this and please do try these out. Let me know what you think and leave a comment below.