Each time I do a special feature on my blog, I like to ask the artist: “We all pull from different things to inspire our art. What 3 things inspire your creativity the most?”.
There’s a reason why I ask. It’s not because I feel like taking up space on the page. And not because I couldn’t think of anything else to inquire. My purpose is simply this: I really want to know.
I want to know what motivates an individual to pick up a pen to draw a picture, a pair of pliers to mold an earring, a yard of fabric to stitch a wonderful creation. There has to be something that makes one’s pulse race. That something has to be fuel to charge the creative mind.
For me, that something is fashion. I’ve been in love with it since I was a third-grader skipping around in a brown, plaid Catholic school uniform, with penny loafers to match.
I’ve come a very long way since then. Gone are the days of bland, mandatory clothing and here now is my penchant for skinny jeans and 3-inch heels. I work in New York City by day and the world of fashion is at my fingertips each time I step out of the subway station on 34th Street and 7th (better known as Fashion Ave.).
As soon as I emerge from underground, I encounter the mammoth that is Macy’s Herald Square. If you’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting that popular flagship store, you’ll no doubt remember its windows. If you haven’t had the opportunity to visit, one of the most exciting things about Macy’s on 34th (besides the gazillion celebrity appearances) is the fact that the windows change every two weeks (it seems). The store’s visual team does an excellent job of creating eye-catching window displays that are guaranteed to pull you in.
The most recent window displays have turned out to be my latest source of inspiration. The beachy summer theme along with a few Spring windows have caused me to walk by in awe. The colors are BEAUTIFUL! They’re bold, they’re bright, they’re everything I love for my candy to be.
I could easily use the basic dark chocolate, milk chocolate, or white chocolate in Carnival’s candy recipes, but after being saturated in the world of fashion for most of my life, I can’t fathom not injecting color into my original candy creations. Fashion pushes me to the limit every time I pick up a pen and piece of paper to jot down combos that will come next. I pull from everything I’ve learned and reach back to all of my inspirations.
I’ve participated behind the scenes at Mercedes Benz Fashion week, sat in on the design process at major fashion companies, and come across some of the most fashionably (an unfashionably) colorful characters that are the everyday people of NYC. Can you blame me if I take it all in and dish it back out?
Macy’s amazing team has charged me and given this candy-maker a desire to interpret these windows into new candies, cakes, and cookies for the Carnival shop. Take a look at the images I photographed below, see how these glimpses of inspiration have caused the gears to start turning in my head:
I recently added Choco-Chiptastic Citrus Mini Cakes and Sweet Spice Orange Cookies to my shop, but this window has me pondering an orange-chocolate type candy. Maybe something with a little white chocolate thrown in. An orange sherbert of some sort, maybe?
I’m going green . . . like green as in a new cupcake or candy bar or something else that’s guaranteed to be pretty and delish. The brown in the bathing suits is a perfect touch too. I can’t wait to play around and see what ideas develop.
That Coach bag looks like dulce de leche to me. And let me tell you, I LOVE to devour Haagen-Dazs’ dulce de leche ice cream. Believe it. You can also believe that I’d wear everything in this window. Why not create goodies to match? I’m thinking more caramel in the shop. A caramel something with blueberries? Or maybe something else that will be a surprise . . .
Spring, glorious Spring! Pink, red, cream – looks a little like Valentine’s Day to me, but I’ll take it. I’ve added only two candies with the color red in the shop (the Triple Treasure Rhapsody Tubs and the Bombshell Bites). Red is my least favorite color, so I don’t play around with it much. I have a feeling that will change very soon. Adding pink and cream may make me feel better.
A blue and orange color scheme always reminds me of the New York Knicks. Yet, I appreciate how much they complement each other. I’m not sure how I would translate this into a cookie or a cake, but something’s cooking in my dome.
Here’s orange again. Orange and brown make an exciting mix. All of my recipes are original so there won’t be any Butterfingers in my shop. Instead, I’ll add something peanut butter-flavored that I think will be absolutely perfect. I’m getting super-excited just thinking about it.
Brown and green again here, too. This window really did it for me, mainly because green and brown are two of my favorite colors to wear. I love a brown handbag and shoe, especially with hints of gold thrown in. Haven’t thought much about gold candy, but something golden and sweet will certainly do.
It was so much fun filling you in on my newfound source of inspiration! I’m signing out now, but check back often for my future peeks into the things that inspire me. Until next time, I’ll keep my eyes open for the next exciting wonder on the streets of NYC . . .