Try This: Reed Diffuser

Unlock the power of essential oils with this simple bathroom project.

| July/August 2004

Potpourri is so last century, but wonderful, sensual smells never go out of style. Add an accessory to the bathroom that’s both aesthetically and aromatically pleasing. Natural, sculptural plant stalks act as a simple, subtle diffuser for fragrant essential oils that gently sweeten the air and cleanse stagnant smells.

Use thin peeled branches from a tree, woody cuttings from a bush, hollow or spongy stems from a weed, or dried stalks from a field of tall grasses. Stalks are engineered by nature to draw liquids upward.

Essential oils come in a dizzying array of possibilities, from the tingly clean scent of peppermint to warm, sweet florals, to strong astringent scents such as tea tree oil. Aromatherapy has been credited with everything from killing bacteria to fighting depression. But even without all that, aroma evokes emotion, and no one can deny the poetic power of a pleasant scent.

1. Look for a bottle, glass, jar, or vase with an interesting color or texture.

2. Find a cork stopper to fit (try the hardware store’s kitchenware or plumbing section). Drill a hole in the cork (1 inch or smaller) with a paddle bit.

3. Make sure your plant materials are thoroughly dry so they will absorb more of the fragrant liquid. Use scissors or garden clippers to cut the stalks to an attractive length for your bottle.

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