Ooouch, my head! Gingerbread snowflakes, mulled cider, and gumdrop entertainment have replaced the smoky bars and indie bands of my youth, but the hangover feels the same, accompanied by the somehow-familiar yet now-embarrassing need for a Big Gulp at 10 a.m. Is that wrong?
Our gumdrop wreath-making party at Ella Posie last night was so much fun! The partiers were so busy working on their creations they didn't even seem to notice they were actually packed like wafers into our little space. We ate cookies, listened to our friend Janie and her caroling group sing, and played with gumdrops until the wee hours. It was such a sweet way to start the season.
We do a lot of parties at Ella Posie, but I have to say, this was one of my favorites. It takes a few hours and about three pounds of gumdrops -- giant or regular -- to cover a 10" Styrofoam wreath, and I think every single person was able to finish theirs by the end of the evening. We even had a few little ones whose wreathes of course wound up being incomparably uncalculated and charming. Look how cute these are.
It was fascinating to me how differently people approached this project. Some dug right in and started placing gumdrops with abandon. Some studied their wreathes for ten minutes before placing a single 'drop. Some picked out all the reds and horded them in a pile for themselves. Some methodically built rows perfectly spaced. My lovely and talented baking friend Sarah built a gorgeous cherry-cheesecake of a loop.
To hang the wreath, you first need to wrap a loop of wire around the form and make a hanger. If you're using the spongy Styrofoam as opposed to the "extruded" kind (which is much harder) you might want to wrap a piece of white masking tape around the area where the wire will sit. Once the wreath gets loaded with gumdrops, it is very heavy, and the wire may start pulling through the foam. Then you just snap toothpicks in half, stick the broken end in the 'drop and the pointy end in the wreath, and then do that about another 319 times (literally). . . .
I'd love to see the ribbons that everyone picks out to finish them off, wouldn't you?
If you have a gumdrop-wreath-making party, I think you'll have a really good time. We had such a wonderful mix of attendees -- some came alone, some came in groups, some were customers, some were friends of ours, some we hadn't seen in years, some we hadn't ever met -- but it didn't matter one whit how you got there or with whom you came. As I looked around, it seemed to me that absolutely everyone there was having fun. And that's what I love about the holidays.