Pomanders are incredibly satisfying to make and really easy, but a few words of caution – they are heavier than they look, so are not ideal for little ones. Be aware, too, of how large they are – from a small base, the final pomander is rather substantial. They are perfect decoration for chair ends and door handles.
Soak the oasis ball by dropping it into a deep bucket of water. Be patient and do not press down – it will soak fully and properly in seconds!
If you want ribbon to hang beneath the pomander, make a long loop of ribbon with a knot two thirds of the way down and use a U-shaped piece of wire to thread the ribbon through the centre of the ball. Dark colour ribbon works best.
Rest the ball on the jar leaving most of it free to flower. Pop a little tissue in the jar to soak up dripping water as it is made and prevent the ribbon tails from becoming soaked.
Cut the flowers so they have a stem length of around 6cm. Begin by inserting them into the foam in a line across the ball (giving it the appearance of a Mohican) so you can follow the height and ensure the finished shape is even.
Once the top of the ball is finished, carefully flip it over on to a cushion and fill in the spaces beneath. Make sure the stems don’t go straight through the foam to the other side of the ball and try not to make any mistakes inserting the flowers, as it is hard to get any flowers to stay in place once there are holes.
If using particularly soft-stemmed flowers, or if the pomander is being carried, it’s best to wire the flowers, as this will ensure that none of the flowers are dislodged as the foam starts to dry out or is moved around.
Extracted with permission from Vintage Wedding Flowers by Vic Brotherson, with photography by Catherine Gratwicke. Published by Kyle Books and distributed in New Zealand by New Holland, $60.