Grama’s Pomander


I dropped my Grama’s Pomander into a yarn bin about a week ago and today went into it to get something and when I opened it the most wonderful clean smell of Peppermint reached my nose! This is going to work like a charm! 

Pomander, from a French word pomme d’ambre, is usually filled with perfume exuding materials like cloves, ambergris or musk. Thought to even ward off infection in times of pestilence and is still today used to protect against bad smells, just not around our necks. The perferated holes in them allows the scent to escape and surround the wearer or the closed space.

Most often this special little container was a unique shape like nuts, skulls, hearts, balls, books or even ships. Could be attached to a chain and worn as a finger ring (can’t even imagine why!). Even smaller versions acted as buttons or rosary beads. Remember these were used before antiperspirants were created!

Pomander can be a bag containing fragrant herbs and spices and even dried fruits like apples and orange peels. Pomanders were an earlier form even of aromatherapy that is still in practice today. The Pomander can be used with aromatics that eventually have to be resoaked or herbs and spices added to pop the scent again. These wonderful gadgets can be placed just about anywhere you want to liven up a rooms aroma or a sock drawer or even slip into your boots!

Collecting them is fun! I look for Pomander’s in Thrift Stores, Antique Stores and Yard sales. Most of the time they only cost a few dollars. 

Take a bit of cotton, soak with some Peppermint Oil, put the cotton inside and seal the bottom. Place the Pomander Ball where ever you think they are needed. I’m going to put them in my yarn bins. Resoak the cotton when the smell has dissipated.

I sure hope that we never have to “wear pomander” again in buttons or dangling jewelry but the thought just kind of makes you wonder what all those variety of pomanders smelled like in a room full of folks.



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