Many years ago I made a Valentine quilt while trying out Elly Sienkiewicz's Appliqué 12 Easy Ways. Every year in February I display this little wall hanging in my home.
I made two hearts of each type and found out which appliqué methods I like and which I dislike. It was a good learning curve and that makes this quilt very dear to me.
In Japan Valentine = a gift of chocolate.
Julie Fukuda over at My Quilt Diary has written an excellent blog post about how this tradition of giving chocolate came about in Japan. I warmly recommend you to read it.
Here are a few examples of this year's chocolate haul:
The red box in the next picture came in its own tiny carrier bag.
How should one react when one's husband is given a pretty box of exquisite chocolates in a red box with a heart dangling from the ribbon?
Well, one should be most pleased and put that little heart on a crazy quilt!
In this box there was a note about the NPO (Non Profit Organisation) that sells these chocolates to raise funds for their activities.
Clic here to read more.
In the bottom corner the six circles explain what flavours there are:
Raspberry, Maple, Black Tea,
Green Tea (Macha), Passion Fruit and Mango.
All have white chocolate as a base.
Now what's in this box? Those who read French will know it contains something fit for a king's palate.
Actually this is a box of rusks! Rusks!? Well, not the Swedish wholesome whole-wheat rusks you need all your teeth to bite into.
Instead there are eight chocolate covered rusks decorated with gold dust! They are made from roasted French baguette.
Each is wrapped in its own little golden plastic bag with a sturdy cardboard disc to prevent the rusk from damage.
Individual wrapping is the norm in Japan and there are several reasons why sweets, biscuits and crackers come in their own little bags. They keep fresh longer, they are protected from moisture in summer, they can be served to guests in pristine condition, they can be given to take home to guests who were too modest to eat at your table, they can be served to other guests at another time, they might have a Best Before date printed on the bag...
Now I will treat my Royal palate to a gold dusted chocolate covered rusk before settling down to some quilting.