I like to make scented herbal sachets and pillows for different uses - sometimes I put them in a drawer with out of season clothes to keep everything smelling sweet & fresh, other times I use them as an eye pillow or relaxing heat pack.
This project is an herbal dream pillow that you can place on your eyes, forehead, or chest while resting, or you can keep it beside your pillow while you sleep. Herbs have been used in many traditions to promote sleep, stave off nightmares, ease headaches, and encourage pleasant dreams.
For this project you will need one 16 x 5 inch rectangle of cotton fabric, a sewing machine or a needle and thread for hand sewing,1 cup of rice, and 1 cup of dried aromatic herbs. You can use any aromatic herbs you like, but there are certain herbs that are traditionally used in dream pillows for their ability to promote relaxation and dreams.
You might want to try:
Mugwort (said to produce visions and lucid dreams)
Lavender (for relaxing deep sleep)
Hops (for restful sleep and dreaming)
Rosemary (to avoid headaches and nightmares)
Cedar (said to repel bad dreams)
In my pillow I mixed peppermint and lavender - lavender is one of my all time faaaaavorites and I love using peppermint to treat tension, anxiety, and headaches. They smell really good together, too!
Begin by folding your rectangle in half with the right sides of the fabric together. Using your sewing machine or hand sewing, sew up the long sides of the rectangle, but leave the top open to make a little bag. Turn the bag right side out and fill it with 1 cup of rice and 1 cup of dried herbs.
Press the raw, open edges under and sew them together to close the pillow.
Now you're ready for a night of sweet dreams (or an afternoon of pleasant napping!).
During the winter I made a slightly larger version and would pop in the microwave for 30 seconds - this heats up the rice so you can use it as a heat pack! You can use it over and over again, a great way to get through those cold winter nights.
I find most of my dried herbs at my local natural food store, but you can also grow your own, or order them online. My favorite online source is Mountain Rose Herbs : )