Dream pillows have been used for centuries. By using a blend of specific herbs and flowers one is said to be able to experience vivid and meaningful dreams as well as receive relief from nightmares. Today we acknowledge the research that proves the smell of herbs, flowers and essential oils can have a positive effect on our ability to relax, mental health, and our dreams.
Historically, babies were often given small pillows filled with herbs to help calm them or to ease crying during the bedtime hours. They have also been called sleep or comfort pillows, and they were filled with relaxing herbs.
The scent of the herbs in these dream pillows will not be as strong as a potpourri, it will definitely be more subtle. The hope is that they will promote a more restful sleep and ward off bad dreams. If you, or someone you know, has trouble sleeping when traveling, bring a dream pillow with you to as a sleep aid.
Variety of Herbs Useful for Dream Pillows
- Anise – Repels nightmares, but be sure to use sparingly.
- Calendula – Used to induce restful sleep.
- Catnip – Increases restful sleep. Especially good for babies and children.
- Cedar – Repels bad dreams.
- Chamomile – Used for relaxation and pleasant dreams.
- Hops – Aids in restful sleep and healing.
- Jasmine – The dried flowers are useful for romantic and erotic dreams, especially for women.
- Lavender – These flowers have the ability to ease stress, soothe, and relax. A simple pillow made only with lavender can be simply perfect.
- Lemon Balm – A known for it’s ability to reduce anxiety and insomnia. Also valuable for relieving headaches and stress.
- Mugwort – Protection.
- Mullein – Guards against nightmares.
- Rose petals – Adds loving and peaceful thoughts to dreams.
- Rosemary – Repels bad dreams, but use sparingly due to the strong scent.
Creating Small Pillows
If you are handy with a sewing machine you can easily make small pillows or sachets from various fabrics or you could even make animal shapes that are stuffed with your own herb mixture to give as gifts for children. You could also sew these easily by hand with a simple stitch.
To make a dream pillow, I prefer to use muslin. Begin by cutting 2 identical sizes of fabric. I like these pieces of muslin to be 5″ by 5″ (Although any size will do. It’s a matter of preference). With the wrong sides of the material (if there are any) together, stitch down 3 of the sides to the depth of 3/4″. Turn the little sachet inside out so that the seams are now on the inside. Begin filling your sachet with your own herbal mixture or fill it with my favorite recipe below. Once filled to your liking, complete the pillow by stitching the fourth side by hand.
Dream Pillow Recipe – For Peaceful Sleep
– 1 part lavender flowers
– 1 part rose petals
– 1 part chamomile
– 1 part mugwort
– 1 part hop flowers
– 1 part cedar tops
– a small amount of rosemary
Directions: Combine all herbs in wooden or glass bowl and mix with a wooden spoon. Fill small, hand-sewn pillows with enough of this herbal mixture. Note: Be sure not to overfill. The sachet should go unnoticed slipped inside the pillow case.
-Dream pillows help you drift off to sleep naturally. Simply insert a dream pillow inside of your pillow case.
-If using dream pillow with babies, you should place the pillow under the crib sheet to avoid a choking hazard.
-The herbs in the pillow will maintain their scent for years. You may want to store them in plastic bags when you are not using them to maintain the scent longer.
-Organically grown flowers and herbs are preferred for dream pillows.
-A few herbs you may want to avoid, secondary to their ability to cause frightening dreams and/or headaches, include: artemisia, bay laurel leaves, Russian tarragon, sage leaves, tansy, and vetiver root.