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Orange Pomanders

Christmas orange pomander

Orange pomanders fill the house with a delicious scent, and look pretty too. If you woudl like a quick and easy craft, with supermarket ingredients, try method 1 below. For a more traditional, longer lasting pomander, try method 2.

Method 1 - short-term pomanders

Choose a number of thin-skinned oranges. Using a large darning needle, prick a design on the oranges. A large-spaced random design (as in the photo above) works well, as does a double row of holes around the middle of an orange. Push a clove into each hole. Arrange in a bowl or glass vase and enjoy the gorgeous scent.

Idea: "Write" a letter in cloves on each orange and use to spell a Christmas word (perhaps Merry, Christmas, Yule, or Noel). Arrange the oranges on your mantlepiece, or down the center of your table, for an original and sweet-smelling display.

Method 2 - long lasting traditional pomanders

You will need:

A medium-sized thin-skinned orange
1/2 cup whole cloves
1/2 cup orris root powder
2 tablespoons cinnamon powder
1 tablespoon ground allspice
1 tablespoon ground nutmeg


Roll the orange in your hands to warm it: this makes it easier to push the cloves into it. Using a large darning needle, poke holes into the orange about 1/8 inch apart, and then push a clove into each hole. A traditional pomander covers the entire orange with cloves closely, but it is easiest to work on a small area at a time.

Mix all the powders together, and roll your clove-studded orange in it, filling the spaces between the cloves as much as possible. Store carefully in a small cardboard box lined with tissue paper, and tip the extra powder on top. Keep in a warm (but not hot) dry place, such an airing cupboard, for 3 to 4 weeks. Shake off excess powder and tie a pretty ribbon around the pomander, with a bow and a loop for hanging. Any excess powder can be saved and used again.