Today we got around to making pomanders. The fruit was purchased a few days ago, but there was finally an hour or so that we could sit and let the fragrances of the citrus and spices waft about. We usually see this done with oranges, but for years we have preferred using lemons and limes. They don't spoil nearly as often, and oranges are just too good for eating!
Begin with nice, blemish-free fruits. If you'd like to hang it from a ribbon, tape or band off sections where the ribbon will go, so you don't put cloves there. The lemon shown being worked on will shrink quite a bit, but there will be a clear line where the rubber bands have been.
Use something sharp to make a hole, rather than trying to jam the cloves in. That just makes your fingers hurt. We used wooden skewers here, but have used nails, etc. in the past.
We enjoy making different patterns and designs. They won't be terribly clear when the pomander is cured, but they do look pretty cool. When the kids were little, we set them to work on the tiny kumquats, and they loved it... of course those are too small for any sort of pattern.
When the fruit is covered with all the cloves you want to insert, make up a rolling blend. We used equal parts of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, with a smidge of orris root.
Cover the pomanders and then roll them over and pour the spices over every side and surface.
Each day for the next couple of weeks you'll want to roll them around gently in the spices, and spoon it from the plate onto the top of them. They will gradually dessicate, become incredibly lightweight. You can enclose them in fine mesh if you want, or just tie a ribbon around them to hang in the closet.
A really fun and fragrant craft for the holidays!