Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Millefiori



There were so many SWEET possibilities!  For a while I tried to stay away from the obvious candy connections, and I spent some time working on a design based on (sweet) memories of my daughter's childhood that was going to involve using pieces of silk from the Chinese dresses she's worn over the years... but when she discovered my plan she forbade me and insisted that she wanted those dresses kept intact!  

I started thinking about my associations with Christmas sweets in particular, which led me to think about these pretty candies which always seemed special to me.


I think of them as "Millefiori Candy" and I found this image by searching that phrase.  But I didn't find many photos and if there are other names for these, I'd love to know them.  I haven't seen or hasd them in years.  Are they just at Christmas-time?  These colors seem springy, actually.  I don't even know.  At any rate, with all those happy colors, how could I resist?  And of course, I knew my background had to be pink. 

So I had a lot of fun doing little abstract millefiori disks.  They're fused and then sewn down.
 

And yes, I'm aware that the colors and style of this are so sweet that it almost makes my teeth hurt looking at it.  But that's just extra sweetness, I figure.

There are no deep messages here, no serious reflection on what a gift the last 5 years of sharing art with the 12x12 members and readers has been to me.  I will save that for another time.  This is just a sweet celebration of simple happiness.

Thanks, Terri, for a "sweet" theme!

14 comments:

West Michigan Quilter said...

They are adorable. What a clever idea!

Karen said...

I think I remember theses candies from Disneyland or Knott's Berry Farm. What a great interpretation of the theme Diane, and I don't blame Miss C for not letting you cut up her Chinese dresses.

Kristin L said...

This belongs on the same mood-board as Kirsty's quilt. Yours is the organized candy shop at opening, and her's is the aftermath of a massive session decorating cookies and cakes. :-)

Sandy said...

my brother-in-law in America calls these 'okra candy'... because they have shapes in them like sliced okra does. "Millefiori Candy" sounds alot better! I think they make them like they do the millefiori paperweights, only with coloured sugar rather than coloured glass.

Over here in the UK they are called Rock Sweets. They often have words in them and it is the the uncut versions of the sweets that are sold as souveniers. So, you can get Brighton Rock etc.
Do an image search for rock sweets uk.
https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=rock+sweets+uk&hl=en&tbo=u&rls=com.microsoft:en-gb:IE-SearchBox&rlz=1I7ADBR_en&tbm=isch&source=univ&sa=X&ei=-NTIUKa7EdKa1AX864HgDA&ved=0CGAQsAQ&biw=1024&bih=600

Anyway, I love your depiction!
Sandy in the UK

Diane Perin Hock said...

Sandy, thank you for the link to the images. I wasn't familiar with the ones with the words. But there was an image of an American brand of this type of candy that is clearly for Christmas -- in red and green, of course -- so that must be what made the association in my head!

Ali Honey said...

Wow! so much better in fabric than in Sugar!

Helen Conway said...

So light and bright and happy even though I know life is not all like that for you right now. Did it brighten your days to make this? I do vaguely remember having sweets like this but they are not quite the same I didnt think as brighton rock. More classy for sure. And what were you thinking, contemplating cutting up Miss C's dresses? I shall tell her to take your scissors away!

Gerrie said...

Now, I want to run out an buy a bag of candy for the holidays. This is sweet and I love the grid and the colors that you have used.

Françoise said...

I too remember getting this kind of candies from my grandmother, especially the ones with the cherries and strawberries. I also saw very similar ones in Japan, but they were really tiny.
Anyway, I love this quilt Diane. It looks really sweet.

Terri Stegmiller said...

I haven't seen these candies in years!!! They bring back memories of childhood. Now I bet I'll be watching for them in the store, to see if they still exist.

I love love love this quilt Diane. It's so fun and the colors and shapes are so happy. Visual eye candy for sure!!!

Renate said...

Oh My Diane,I remember those!!! my mother used to put them out along with other candies at Christmas time. Because they were always so much harder than the others, they were usually the last ones left, and ended up in our school lunches after the holidays. Thank you so much for bringing back a fond memory of my mother.

Terry Grant said...

I have never seen the pastel colored millefiori candies--only the Christmas colored ones. They were ALWAYS in my Christmas sock as a child and I loved them, solely for their beautiful designs. I remember wondering how they could possibly create those intricate designs in candy. One year when we hung our socks I found a millefiori inside my Christmas sock, left from the year before and I was thrilled! Amazing the memories that stick from childhood, eh? Anyway, this quilt makes me quite happy when I look at it. The colors are, like those in Kirsty's quilt, sweet, clean, bright and happy. The designs could be so many wonderful things--windmills, flowers, suns, wheels, orange slices.....totally charming!

Deborah Boschert said...

Me too! I remember them from Christmas time along with what we called pillow candies and ribbon candies. We just don't have those anymore... now it's all foil wrapped kisses or mass market truffles.

Helen's Illumination quilt included Rock Candy slices. These two quilts would make a very interesting "compare and contrast" discussion.

You are so right that the background just had to be PINK! It's definitively the sweetest color, isn't it? I love the color palette of the whole quilt and you've done a lovely job of drawing the eye all around the composition.

Brenda Gael Smith said...

How absolutely charming! These kind of lollies were also in New Zealand but I have no idea what they are called. Your happy, spring coloured circles make an interesting counterpoint to the more somber rock candy in Helen's illumination quilt.