Posts Tagged ‘Party’

Yesterday, creativity struck in my house. (Run!) My daughter and I huddled in the kitchen to make candy crafts—and spend a near-final summer hour together before the school bell rings.

Now, I’m not a crafty mom, but that’s what makes this exercise all the better. If I can turn out a few candy masterpieces, you can, too! My 9-year-old daughter is artistic, but as genes would have it, I turned out to be the antithesis of Martha Stewart. (Notice my globs of frosting on photos below.)

So, a quick Google search is all we needed to get the following three easy and inexpensive (beautiful words in the Great Recession) candy projects flowing.

Candy Airplane
Inspiration:
Family Fun

Materials:
- Sticks of gum (I used Wrigley’s Extra)
- Smarties (Did you know Smarties now comes in chocolate, bubble gum, and X-treme sour varieties? I did not. What rock have I been living under?)
- Peppermint Life Savers
- White paper
- Small, colored rubber bands (I bought tiny Goody brand hair rubber bands at Target)

Super simple instructions:
1. Thread rubber band through the holes of two Life Savers, then balance the roll of Smarties between them, across the rubber band.
2. For wings, balance stick of gum on top, perpendicular to the Smarties, and pull the rubber band up and over each side of the gum to hold it all in place.
3. Decorate wings with tiny stickers, drawings, or messages.

Candy Boat
Inspiration: National Confectioners Association‘s downloadable
Candy Craft Booklet
Materials:
- Orange slices
- Peppermint Lifesavers
- Pretzel sticks
- Rips licorice squares (a fairly new product, but I found it at Target.)
- Gummy bears
- Can of white icing
Super Simple Instructions:
1. Turn each orange slice curve side down (like a boat).
2. Place pretzel stick in center of each orange slice.
3. Cut Rips licorice square diagonally to create two triangles. (Instead of Rips to make the sail, you can wrap a fruit roll cut into triangular shape around pretzel.)
4. Attach licorice “sail” to pretzel with frosting.
5. Attach lifesaver to side of orange slice with frosting.
6. Add gummy bear on top of orange slice and attach with frosting.
Candy Automobile
Inspiration:
The Stir
Materials:
- Hostess Ho Hos snack cakes
- Smarties
- Lifesavers
- Bunny Peeps or Teddy Grahams
- Peach rings
Super Simple Instructions:
1. “Glue” the following treats together with frosting:

- Car body: Hostess Ho Hos snack cake
- Driver: Teddy Graham (Bunny Peeps work better, but I had to improvise since it’s August.)
- Seat back: Peach ring (I used mini Nutter Butter cookies, which were a decent stand-in.)
- Tires and Steering Wheel: Life Savers
- Car lights: Smarties

Have you made any easy candy crafts lately?
Upload your finished product pics at Facebook.com/candydotcom.

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A very peculiar novelty candy item arrived in my mailbox last week: Gummy Shotz (edible gummy shot glasses). The “shot glasses” ship six individual flavors per pack and flavors include cherry, grape, orange, lemon, lime, cola, blue raspberry, green apple, pink bubble gum, and pineapple.

I’m guessing these colorful, two-inch-tall sticky vessels were dreamed up for gimmicky 1 oz. drinks like Lemon Drops, Kamikazes, and B-52s … and for more mature events like bachelorette parties, Mardi Gras, luaus, etc.

I get that, but I took these super sweet and somewhat rubbery shot glasses in a more juvenile direction. (How many adults really want to eat a gooey gummy “glass” after downing a shot of Jäger? It’s a heck of a chaser.)

I spent a morning in my kitchen concocting candy crafts by inserting a mini baking cup in each shot glass and filling the mini cups with colorful candies like peanut M&M’s, Reese’s Pieces, sour crawlers, gummy bears, and Skittles to play off of the primary gummy colors.

My craft project turned out to be something I would use as a kid’s party favor wrapped in cello and tied with a bow (Candy Land theme anyone?), or as eye candy on a candy buffet.

Per my 14-year-old neighbor’s brilliant suggestion, I also filled some of the shot glasses with whipped cream and topped them with fruit and sprinkles. I don’t think I’d serve these to guests older than 14, though, but they do look pretty on a tray.

I photographed some of my final products with my low-budget 35 mm, so my apologies in advance for the following lackluster visuals:

Now it’s your turn to think outside of the box. What would you fill these gummy shot glasses with?

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in Brands/Companies, Candy, Candy Type, Reviews, Soft

It’s official. The folks at Wonka announced today that two of 10 golden tickets placed in Wonka Exceptionals chocolate bars have been found.

The two winners—Eva E. of San Francisco and Jason C. of Southaven, Miss.—will be jetting off on a trip around the world with three guests. Luckies.

According to Wonka, Eva found her golden ticket in a Wonka Exceptionals Chocolate Waterfall Bar purchased at a Target store in Colma, Calif. Jason found his in a Wonka Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate Bar at a Walmart in his hometown.

Wonder what the odds are of me finding a golden ticket if I pick up a Wonka Exceptionals Scrumdiddlyumptious Bar in Chicago?

In other news, the makers of M&M’s, Mars Chocolate North America, announced today that Sean “Diddy” Combs is throwing a party for Ms. Green, who was crowned America’s favorite M&M’s character. (An announcement about America’s love affair with the “I melt for no one” Ms. Green is going to be made this evening on Entertainment Tonight.)

Apparently, Ms. Green captured 23% of 3.4 million votes cast by fans at www.mms.com. She beat out Red, Yellow, Orange, and Blue. (I am a Mr. Yellow fan. How about you?)

The party with Diddy, which will be held in NYC in September, is part of Mars’ “Party Like Diddy Sweepstakes.”

The odds of scoring an invite to this soiree are probably slimmer than winning a golden ticket.

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Now that candy buffets are as common as cakes and cupcakes at weddings, baby showers, birthday parties, etc., I thought I’d check in with a handful of event planners to get their tips on building the best candy buffets, pitfalls to avoid, and trends they’re noticing. I’ve got some gems:

Tracey Baxter, Aisle Do, Charlotte, N.C.

- Offer multiple containers of the same candy to control traffic and add symmetry to the buffet design. If guests can access the same candy at two locations on the buffet, they wait in line for half the time.”

- Use scoops proportional to candy sizes. To determine if guests will get the right amount with each utensil, ask yourself, “Will this scoop provide a handful of this candy?”

- Know when to stop. Variety is important but more than 15 different types of candy presents too many options for a buffet to still be functional. Extreme variety does work well, however, when using a single candy type in multiple flavors such as jelly beans, taffy, rock candy, or chocolate gems.

- If your event is not bent toward specific flavors, name your candies something related to the theme. For example, with a nautical theme, “gummy melon O’s” could become “Melon Life Preservers.”

- Use signs to let guests know what family member or friend picked the candies and/or flavors they are enjoying.

Kim Byers, The Celebration Shoppe, Columbus, Ohio

- I spend a lot of time with others in this industry and I see a lot of candy tables. Almost every single one now has saltwater taffy on it. I think it has a great deal to do with nostalgia and the ability to get it in so many colors.

- In the past five months we’ve created printable candy table/buffet tags. They’re selling like hotcakes.

  • Candy Dish Tags from The Celebration Shoppe

Heather Kuhn, Sweetest Candy Buffets, Carmel, Ind.

- We’re seeing an interest in using multiple flavors of gourmet jelly beans and including “recipes” for eating those jelly beans together.Recently, we have had people inquiring about including unique items on their buffets, such as flavored popcorn or cake bites/balls.

Terri Altergott, ?Something Borrowed, Something New Events, Uxbridge, Mass.

- Routinely, I’m asked to create a visually interesting candy buffet. In a few weeks, we’re adding lots of bling to a candy table. Envision crystals with light dancing off of them and submersible lighting at the bottom of each apothecary jar to illuminate the table.

Lia Moore, Full Circle Eventi, Clawson, Mich.

- While many containers come with lids, this often leads to broken glass and missing pieces. If you love the lids, present your display with the lids in place, but remove and store them away the moment your candy station is open.

- Consider a round table vs. a standard rectangular buffet to eliminate long lines and encourage guests to mingle around the serving station.

- Vase size is important! Use large, wide-mouth containers so guests can see what they’re getting and get at it easily. Variety in vase size and shape also keeps the eye engaged and the display interesting.

- Use thematic take-out pails or cello bags for guests to take candy home. Personalize the packaging with small stickers and ribbons.

Last tips:

- When ordering candy, be sure to place your order well in advance so that you have time to stage the buffet at home before the party and order more candy if necessary.

- Need inspiration? Check out these gorgeous candy buffets by NYC’s event planning guru, Amy Atlas.

Top photos by Amy Atlas

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in Candy, Candy Tips, Chocolate, Nostalgic/Retro, Novelty, Soft