History of the Pomander:
In the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, people didn’t take baths very often – usually only once a year, in the spring!! They never brushed their teeth, either, so most people smelled pretty bad.
Early pomanders were made with a combination of gums, resins, and (often) dirt or clay. The pomanders were kept in cases, often of metal, with pierced sides to hold them. The cases were carried, worn on chains or ribbons around the neck, attached to walking sticks, and worn on the belt. Later, pomander cases (which could include compartments for a number of different scents) also came to include compartments for sponges soaked in aromatic vinegar. Cloved fruit pomanders are a late development of the pomander.
A lemon or orange
A pencil or crayon
A ribbon if you want to hang the pomander
Work gloves, if the cloves hurt your fingers
With the pencil or crayon, draw a design (like a star or a heart) or write something (like a word or your name) on the fruit.
Push the cloves into the fruit, following along the pencil or crayon lines. You can fill in the design, or just cover the whole fruit with the cloves. The more cloves you use, the better your pomander will smell.
Tie the ribbon around the fruit if you want to hang it.
Places to put a pomander:
In each of your sneakers when they get stinky
In a closet
In a drawer
In a hamper
In a car
Where else can you think of to put a pomander?
Pomanders are natural moth repellants. Sometimes pomanders are rolled in additional spices and fragrances and left to “cure” for a long time, usually 2 weeks. Once they dry they will last forever, but the scent fades. You can re-roll them in spice or spray them with fresh spice to make them smell fresh.