As we’re sure you well know, the months of February and March can easily stretch into what feels like a never-ending winter, especially when warm, teasing days poke through just to be dashed by a forecast of snow the next. One way to make them feel instantly less bleak? A breezy little assembly-line craft, and one that’ll (physically) warm your cold, winter hands.
These sweet-smelling handmade sachets are just the thing to spruce up your unmentionables drawer and air out stuffy closets—smaller ones are kind of like boxes of baking soda in their ability to stave off stale odors lingering in last season’s clothes. Not only that, but larger versions can be popped in the microwave for about a minute and act as the world’s best-smelling heating pad for your snow-shovel backache. Come summer, these little guys can also be stashed in the freezer to relieve the back of your neck from sweltering temps, as well as provide gentle cold relief to strained muscles.
This meditative project utilizes a mere yard of fabric (which makes about 10 sachets), dried lavender petals, and little else. It’s a great way to use up scrap fabric, or a little lavender leftover from a batch of shortbread. In addition to lavender, you can experiment with adding your favorite essential oils, bay leaves, peppercorns, eucalyptus, clove, cinnamon, rosemary—you name it. After extended use (about three months), massage the sachets to release essential oils and ensure a longer-lasting smell.
So, gather your supplies, pour yourself a glass of wine, and prepare a stack of them to tie up with ribbons as gifts to yourself and others—these little pouches of spring couldn’t be easier.
What You’ll Need:
Rice (or dried corn or flax seed)
Fabric of your choice (anything breatheable)
Needle and thread
How to Make Fragrant Sachets:
1. Prep your stuffing. In a bowl, combine two parts lavender with one part rice; this is your sachet filling. The rice offsets the sometimes too-strong smell of the lavender and gives your sachets a little heft.
2. Prepare squares. Cut two 3 1/2-inch squares of fabric and align them with the sides you like facing inward. You can absolutely adjust this measurement based on the type of finished product you want, like an eye or neck pillow. (You’ll be sewing the sachets inside out before finishing.) I used a soft paisley and denim, allowing the finished selvage edge to remain as a little flourish on the fourth side.
3. Hand sew the squares. Use a simple running stitch to hand sew around three of the four sides of your sachet square, about 1/4-inch in from the edge of the fabric. You can even sew most of the fourth side, leaving a few inches open to fit the width of a spoon. Work carefully to ensure the finished pillows are even shapes (you can also pin them in place before beginning). Of course, this sewing project, like many others, is easier with a sewing machine, so if you’ve got one, break it out!
4. Fill them up. Once you’re finished sewing, snip the pointed corners to avoid bunching. Turn the pouch inside out so you’re left with an empty, nearly fully sewn sachet, and then use a spoon or your palm to stuff the sachet with filling.
6. Sew them up. Fold unsewn fabric sides inward and finish sewing with a blind stitch, or keep the raw edge of the final side exposed like I did—a simple running stitch with a knot will do, in that case. Toss the finished sachets in your sock drawer for a much more refreshing scent when you crack it open in the morning.
This post originally ran last spring, but we figured your sock drawer could use re-freshening.
Photos by James Ransom