Mel loves creating and making her own herbals, cleaning products, air fresheners, bath, beauty, and body products.
There is nothing quite like the smells of autumn. The smells that remind you of home and comfort. The smells that remind you of crisp, cool, foggy mornings, of family gatherings, baking, hot cider, feasts, roaring fires, warm sweaters, scarves, and lighthearted laughter.
For me, it's the most wonderful time of the year. It's the time of year that makes me feel all giddy inside. 'Tis wonderful indeed, the season of leggings, oversized sweaters, scarves, and knee-high boots! To curl up on a cold morning with a steaming cup and a good book. Ah, yes, paradise!
Autumn does this for me, so it's only natural (and no wonder) that my love of this most beloved season and all that it entails had me itching to create something that is sure to boost and enhance this feeling of seasonal bliss. I wanted to create a product that would, upon using, set an atmosphere and a tone for my blissful mood. I was looking for an instant and at-hand product that would trigger my much-sought-after giddy inner celebration for that dearest of seasons. The season that is, let's just face it, simply made for pie, crackling fires, and cuddling.
I wanted to create something that I could use multiple times a day, if I so choose. I wanted something that I could tweak and adjust and have fun with. I wanted it to be simple and fun and with ingredients that are likely already on hand and currently in my pantry, especially this time of year. And so, after a bit of trial and error, I'm here to happily share this magical decoction with you!
Ingredients You'll Need
- The peel from one fresh whole orange
- Cloves (Approx. 8–10 whole or 1/2-1 tsp.ground)
- Cinnamon (Approx. 1/2–1 tsp. ground or 1-2 sticks)
- Allspice (Approx. 1/2–1 tsp.)
- Nutmeg (Approx. 1/2–1 tsp. ground)
- Vodka (Approx. 2–3 Tbsp.) (Use as a preservative)
- Clean, empty spray bottle (Approx. 27 Fluid Ounce Size)
- Medium sauce pan with lid (to boil the ingredients)
- Fresh Water
- Small to medium hand-held strainer (for straining the liquid)
- Small Funnel
- Fill your saucepan approximately halfway full of fresh water. Tap water is fine. Place on cook top.
- Peel your orange. Add the peel of the orange, cloves, cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg to the water in your saucepan.
- Turn on cook top to high heat and bring all above ingredients to a rapid, rolling boil. Once ingredients are rapidly boiling, turn heat temperature down to medium-low, cover, and simmer for approximately 10–15 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Keep lid on. Allow to cool to room temperature.
- Once liquid is room temperature, strain the liquid. Discard leftover ingredients.
- Pour strained liquid into a clean, empty spray bottle. (Works best when using a funnel.)
- Add vodka to the liquid/spray bottle. Close and tighten lid of spray bottle, shake thoroughly, and voila! Your homemade autumn air freshener is ready to go!
Feel Free to Adapt and Adjust Ingredients to Your Personal Liking
The ingredients and amounts of ingredients listed and used here are only approximate. Feel free to adjust any and all of the ingredients and amounts to your specific likes and needs.
Don't like oranges but love lemons? Great! Use lemons instead! Don't like oranges or lemons but like grapefruit? Great! Use grapefruit! Better yet, if you like all three and you're feeling saucy, use all three!
The addition of essential oils would also work great to use in your air freshener. You can/could absolutely substitute essential oils for the use of the fruit peels if you prefer as orange, lemon, grapefruit, etc. essential oils are readily available and you can always substitute clove and cinnamon essential oils as well. If you do choose to take this route, you need not boil the essential oils that you use as this may lessen their strength and affect smell. You would simply add any/all essential oils to the water, other ingredients, and vodka and pour into a clean, empty spray bottle and spritz away!
I would like to state that I've had much, much better luck using the real fruit peels and real spices instead of their essential oil equivalents when making air fresheners. The scent when using the actual fruit peel and spices is stronger, holds up to/against any competing smells (such as cooking odors, etc.) like a champ and smells much more pure and lasts much longer, in my experience.
I'd also like to add that I've found that allowing this mixture, once completed, to sit overnight and "marry" in the spray bottle enhances the fragrance tremendously. If you have an event planned at your home and want your house to smell fantastic, make a day or two ahead, if/when possible. You will not be sorry.
Note: Do not worry if you cannot or do not have time to make ahead. This freshener will smell great straight after making but you may have to re-apply or use more frequently until it has had time to "mesh." There really are no specific rules here. I've provided only general guidelines so you get the gist but don't let that stop you! Experiment to your heart's content!
How and Where to Use
Shake thoroughly before each use and lightly spritz this awesome air freshener in kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, closets, family rooms, man caves, basements, and attics, just to name a few.
Use lightly and with caution on carpets and rugs, on furniture, pet beds, and even in your car. It smells divine and has become a beloved and favorite autumn staple in my home.
Relax, enjoy, and autumn on!
Disclaimer About Using This Air Freshener
I do NOT recommend saturating your carpets, upholstery, clothes, pet beds, etc. with this product or with any product, as all fibers are different and could stain permanently. There are natural oils and spices in this product, and it is impossible to know if or how reactions might occur. Also be careful to allow pet beds and similar things to dry completely before using, just to be on the safe side.
Discontinue use if any irritation occurs, whatsoever. Please use common sense and sensible discretion. Thank you.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2018 Melissa Meadow