Dylan's Candy Bar: Unwrap Your Sweet Life

November 4, 2010 9:39:42 AM PDT
Dylan Lauren, the daughter of legendary fashion designer Ralph Lauren, is the founder of Dylan's Candy Bar, a sweets emporium that goes beyond a candy store. Inspired by Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, she has become known as the "Candy Queen," with stores in the New York area, Orlando, and Houston. Decorated with oversized candy art, the stores stock over 7,000 candies from around the world and years gone by. Dylan's Candy Bars combine the worlds of art, fashion, and pop culture with candy. They feature candy-inspired fashion, café serving baked treats and gourmet ice cream, and a party room and candy-cocktail bar.

Candy has served as Dylan's inspiration, and now her fans can get a peek inside her life through her new book Dylan's Candy Bar: Unwrap Your Sweet Life.

"To me, candy is more than an accessible everyday product we consume; candy is an artful masterpiece!" Dylan says.

Her colorful book is filled with personal anecdotes, memories, and photos which led her to create Dylan's Candy Bar, an environment where everyone feels "like a kid in a candy store." Dylan's tribute to candy will encourage readers to discover the magic behind the seemingly familiar world of candy.

Dylan's Candy Bar: Unwrap Your Sweet Life features candy recipes and inventive candy craft ideas that will appeal to the young at heart, the candy enthusiast, the fashionista, the Pop Art aficionado and anyone interested in living the sweet life, she says.

Sprinkled throughout with candy history, trivia, and fun facts, the book is organized by events and holidays?including birthdays, baby showers, weddings, Easter, Christmas, and Halloween. Dylan shows how to use classic candies that have been around for decades in innovative ways. She shares creative ideas on how to pop the question with candy, host a chocolate movie marathon for single friends on Valentine's Day, and give out birthstone-themed candy goody bags at a birthday party.

You can meet Dylan at Macy's on State Street on Thursday, November 4. She will be signing copies of her book at 12 noon in the Candy Department on the Lower Level.

You'll also be able to see the special edition Dylan's Candy Bar Barbie doll. Available at Macy's, Barbie is wrapped in a colorful dress inspired by the interior of Dylan's Candy Bar. She wears a candy necklace and carries an oversized rainbow lollipop. The doll retails for $34.95 and will be on sale during the book signing. For more information on the event, visit www.macys.com

For more information on Dylan, her book or stores, visit www.DylansCandyBar.com or www.facebook.com/DylansCandy.

MEET DYLAN at Macy's
Today at 12 noon
Candy Dept.
Lower Level on State St.
www.dylanscandybar.com

DECORATING IDEAS FROM DYLAN'S CANDY BAR:

Candy Corn Votives

  • An easy décor item for your table for the holiday are votives with festive colored candy corn which is also found in my book.
  • Everyone has votives lying around their home, so this is an easy and inexpensive way to add some festivity to their homes!
  • All you do is fill a votive will different kinds of candy corn ? for Thanksgiving and fall, we're using Basic orange, Indian (shades of brown) and caramel, and place the candle on top. These can be placed all around your home for an easy and quick decoration.

Reese's Pieces Centerpiece

  • Another easy and inexpensive décor item is doing a centerpiece for a dining room table or even for your coffee table. Fill a bowl filled with Reese's Pieces and place a wreath placed below. You can add lollipops as a finishing touch.

Thanksgiving Candies

  • Decorating your home for the holidays is always so fun and festive, and people don't realize how many themed candies there are.
  • There's everything from giant chocolate turkeys to fall colored M&M's and Jelly Beans to chocolate leaves, leave cookies and fall themed lollipops.

Homemade Gifts with Candy

  • When you're invited over to your friends' home for a home-cooked meal, a party or even for Thanksgiving, you have to bring a hostess gift!
  • A candy gift is perfectly thoughtful and special, and it shows that you appreciate them and their hospitality.
  • One of my favorite gifts is a homemade picture frame. You can buy any type of frame with a flat surface and decorate with your favorite candies.
  • It's a fun way to display a special memory.
  • For example, you can decorate frame with Gummy Bears or bubble gum wrappers. It's very easy, and you can even use a glue stick.

MORE ABOUT DYLAN LAUREN:

Dylan Lauren, known to many as the "Candy Queen," is the founder and CEO of Dylan's Candy Bar. Her stores in New York City, East Hampton, Roosevelt Field, Houston, and Orlando are the most original candy emporiums on the planet, featuring unique candy from around the world and decades past. As the daughter of legendary fashion icon Ralph Lauren and author Ricky Lauren, Dylan was immersed at an early age in design, art, and fashion. After graduating from Duke University with a major in Art History, she traveled the globe in search of the world's most exciting confectionery creations. By 2001, she realized her childhood dream by opening her first candy store inspired by Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. Dylan Lauren and her "candy-centric" tips for living the sweet life are often featured in press across the country. She shares entertaining, decorating, and gift-giving ideas for every holiday and special occasion with her chic and colorful signature style.

A CONVERSATION with DYLAN LAUREN - Author of "DYLAN'S CANDY BAR: UNWRAP YOUR SWEET LIFE"

What inspired you to write a book about candy?

I love to be inspired by candy ideas while traveling, window-shopping, going online, or walking through bookstores. I've always been disappointed when I couldn't find a book on candy that captured its fun and beauty. In my mission to merge art, fashion, and Pop Art with candy, I felt I needed to create this book. It is coffee-table sized with gorgeous colorful, mouthwatering photography that captures the unique shapes, sizes, details, and colors of candy. But it also shows all the ways that candy is not just something we consume?candy is an artful masterpiece we can decorate our lives with and use as iconic ways to celebrate the holidays. I also felt this book could help make people happy and provide unique ideas to ignite their creative spirit and inner child the way my stores do?though a book is much more accessible.

How did your love of candy start? What were your favorites sweets when you were a kid? And now?

Both of my parents have sweet tooths, so it's probably genetic and started in the womb. I was given candy in moderation as a kid and loved it starting around age three! I rotate my favorites and I go through phases. As a kid I liked the newest inventions like Tootsie Roll Pops and Blow Pops (two candies in one!) or chocolate-flavored gum and Big League Chew. I have consistently been a gummy lover of cherry- and lemon-flavored things like Lite Chews, Swedish Fish, licorice, and gummy bears. But as I've gotten older, once a month, milk chocolate?y things are my fave. My absolute candy favorites are Cadbury Creme Eggs and Marshmallow Fluff. But I still consume gummies every day.

What is your favorite holiday or event that you like to celebrate with candy? How do you like to decorate?

Easter. Even though I'm not practicing the holiday religiously, it is my favorite to celebrate. It's mainly because rabbits are my favorite animal and they are most prevalent around Easter. I love all the bright colorful candies and the ones shaped like rabbits. I love the foiled chocolate eggs and the rainbows of colorfully shimmered wrapping they come in. To decorate, I like to put them on a table atop fake-grass place mats. I'll also use rabbit topiaries or giant chocolate rabbits as centerpieces. I also participate in an Easter egg hunt with my family (as a tradition) using foiled chocolate eggs that my parents hide all over the property outdoors.

In coming up with fun tidbits and facts about candy for the book, what was the most interesting or bizarre candy trivia that you came across?

I had so much fun exploring and discovering the hundreds of scenes in films or television shows or songs that incorporated candy. Also, I always thought Sammy Davis Jr. wrote the song "Candy Man," but he didn't (the songwriter is credited in the book). And I never realized just how many episodes of Seinfeld included humor around candy.

What is your favorite section in your candy store?

I love our celebrity bins area that we call Famous Favorites. It's flattering that people like Oprah, Madonna, Michelle Obama, and Alex Rodriguez frequent Dylan's Candy Bar. It's just amazing to see the variety of people of different ages, professions, and backgrounds who love candy. It's interesting that some of the wealthiest celebrities prefer very fun, kiddie candy like gummies to higher end truffles.

Dylan's Candy Bar: Unwrap Your Sweet Life is much more than a book about different types of candy?there is beautiful Pop Art?inspired photography throughout, inventive candy crafts, and even candy cocktail recipes! How are you inspired by candy, both for the book and in your everyday life?

I love candy. When I consume it, I feel happy and I get a sugar high, which gives me energy to pursue projects, exercise, and handle a busy day. But I also just get a mental high looking at candy. Candies come in so many shapes, sizes, colors, and textures that it is never boring to look at. It is the perfect medium for me to create art like mosaics and sculptures, and to decoupage furniture. I also just love surrounding myself with its color and giving it to friends as gifts in unique packages.

The book talks about different colors of candy, what they mean, and how they can make you feel. What is your favorite color of candy and why?

My favorite color to look at and wear is turquoise pantone 3135. BUT I don't love this color to eat. I prefer red candies: red gumballs, cherry Swedish Fish, and strawberry licorice. The red is bright and happy, and cherry is sweet and delicious. On the other hand, I also love white candies like marshmallows, Divinity, nougat, fondant, and the vanilla frosting of a black-and-white cookie. I like the fluffy texture and soft but sweet taste of white vanilla/marshmallow confections.

You've traveled all over the world to discover unique varieties of sweets?what was the most interesting place you visited or the most crazy candy you sampled?

I'd say Asia: China, Thailand, and Japan have some of the most unique candies (or what they'd classify as candies). Japan packages their candies so beautifully with fabric cloth or origami-like paper in gorgeous bright patterns. Sometimes the candy itself is a bit weird (although I like red bean paste), but the packaging makes it worth buying. The candied, seasoned, or salted dried fruits and seafood, or gummy-juice filled candies, I was less sure about?especially when I can't identify all the ingredients. But in Asia, what's fun is to discover and realize how diverse this world's taste palates are.


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