Best Christmas scents

Currents soaking in brandy. A smoking wood burner. The frosty air through an open window. Christmastime certainly is a cauldron of delicious scents! But for the days that smell a lot more like that gingerbread latte you spilt dashing to the car trying to dodge a December downpour, sweeten your home with these natural, do-it-yourself air fresheners.

1. Orange and Clove Pomanders

An oldie but a goodie, these scented citruses really take us back to our childhood! Pomanders are considered one of the earliest forms of aromatherapy and are a true sign of the season. All that’s needed to make them is a bag of oranges, a jar of cloves and a team of little helpers. Simply kneed the orange in your hands to soften the skin and pierce with a toothpick to make poking in the cloves a cinch. You can even roll them in spices such as nutmeg, orris root or allspice for added sniffability. Then, individually wrap your pomanders in old newspaper and leave in an airing cupboard for around a week, turning them daily. Once dry, wrap a piece of kitchen twine or brightly coloured ribbon around them and hang from a coat hook to scent your linen closet.


Fresh pine branches


2. Fresh-Cut Pine Branches

For a waft of Winter whenever you wake up, deck your bed in a bounty of evergreen boughs. They’re easy to source, just use the trimmings from your Christmas tree or take the dog out for a forage and pick up fallen branches of pine, fir, juniper, winterberry and holly. You could even try entwining the foliage with fairy lights (use LEDs, they’re cooler!) for a little extra sparkle or add a sprig to the hangers in your guestroom to spread the festive cheer. Top tips to keep your pickings fresh? Keep them out of direct sunlight and make sure you mist them with water regularly.

3. Essential Oil Blends

Use your sense of smell to sleep better at night by blending variations of these amazing aromatics. Essentials oils can be combined to recreate the bouquet of everything from candy canes to freshly fallen snow and can help soothe stress, anxiety, headaches, insomnia, inflammations and a whole medical dictionary of different ailments. Have a look online and you’ll discover a long list of irresistible recipes. Pop a few drops on your dryer balls, use a spray bottle to spritz your room or sprinkle into a steaming bath and keep your spirits merry and bright even when faced with the Christmas dinner clear-up.


Essential oils


4. Scented Sachets

Gran was right! Slip a scented sachet into your sock drawer or stash one between stored sheets and any pongy corners or musty wardrobes will get an instant aroma upgrade. Plus, it’s a great excuse to hang onto all those fabric scraps. To sew your sachets, there are a million different shapes and sizes to choose from, but, when it comes to filling them, it’s best to follow your nose. Dried herbs and flowers are the most common potpourris, although for a more Yuletide flavour, experiment with cinnamon, vanilla and fresh peels.

5. Wax Dipped Pinecones

Easy, inexpensive and environmentally-friendly, these playful pinecones are not just for aesthetics, they also make fab fire starters! To make them, melt leftover candlewax in an old coffee can (it saves you ruining one of your good saucepans, trust us!), stir in a few drops of dye or a handful of broken crayons for colour and add your preferred fragrance. Dip each pinecone three or four times to coat, remembering to cover your kitchen surfaces with packing paper to catch the drops, and jazz up with a smattering of glitter. Once all the hard works finished, toss a couple into your fireplace and hunker down ‘til Spring.

What smells remind you of Christmas? We would love to hear from you.

Lizzy

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