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Perfumed Stationery

How often do you send a letter or card in the mail? For many of us, it has become a rare pleasure to make time to sit with our thoughts and pen a handwritten greeting to another. Oh, but what a joy it is! Whether you are the sender or recipient, it is such a treat to revel in that sense of connection with dear ones near and far. 


Victorian stationery set


To add an extra special touch of loveliness to your mailings, try your hand at crafting scented stationery! It's a fun and easy way to carry on a centuries-old tradition, and it's sure to bring a smile to anyone who receives them.

As a little girl, I had a set of stationery that was delicately scented with rose. I can still recall the sweet sense of anticipation as I imagined my pen pal’s delight at not only receiving my warm greetings, but of enjoying the letter's pretty fragrance, as well.

antique handwritten letter

And now, many years later, I still send perfumed parcels every day as I mail out Willow & Birch orders! Many have written to tell me how much they enjoy receiving their orders, which they can often smell from their mailbox! (The ladies at my local post office always enjoy the fragrances, too!)

unique bridesmaid gifts

Of course, many Victorians infused their letters with fragrances, as well. During the 19th century, some ink manufacturers took cues from the perfume industry and began using aromatic hydrosols in their inks to create popular scents of the day such as lavender, orange, and rose. In fact, you can still find scented inks from J. Herbin, where they have been making sealing waxes and inks since the 1700s! Victorians also commonly scented their correspondences by placing perfumed sachets in their stationery boxes (psst...you’ll find a modern-day version of this technique below).

"Yes or No" by Charles West Cope, 1873 Victorian art painting woman writing letter

"Yes or No" by Charles West Cope, 1873

The delights of scented stationery got me thinking of ways we can share these fragranced treasures in our modern-day mailings, so I gathered a few fun and easy ways to create your own scented parcels.

For lovely natural fragrance, use the techniques below with your favorite stationery set and my essential oil blends in timeless, Victorian-inspired scents including English Fog, Lavender Breeze, Lemon Zen, and Orange Spice!

  • Using a bottle with a fine-mist sprayer, fill with water and add 1-2 drops of essential oils per ounce of water. Shake well and spray directly onto your cards and envelopes, then allow to dry before penning your greetings.
  • Alternatively, add a few drops of essential oils onto a cotton ball and place in a paper bag, along with your stationery items. (Be careful that the cotton ball does not touch the stationery, which can stain the paper.) Close the bag and let sit for 24 hours or until the fragrance infuses into the paper.

Use one (or both!) of these techniques to create beautifully scented cards to delight your loved ones! 

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  • The eloquence of “Perfumed Stationery” beautifully captures the essence of a sensory experience that transcends the ordinary, leaving an indelible mark on the reader’s imagination.

  • Very good suggestion, Marie. Thank you!! :-)

  • Vodka in place of some of the water would work well too as it’s a good carrier of your essential oil blend but itself evaporates.

    Marie K Longo

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