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Do You Know the History of Confetti?

Aug. 06, 2021

People like to throw confetti on important days or weddings to celebrate, but they often don't understand how these things are formed and the history of confetti. As a confetti supplier, I'd like to share it with you.



The Origin of the Name

The English word confetti (to denote Jordan almonds) is adopted from the Italian confectionery of the same name, which was a small sweet traditionally thrown during carnivals. Also known as dragée or comfit, Italian confetti are almonds with a hard sugar coating; their name equates to French confit. The Italian word for paper confetti is coriandoli which refers to the coriander seeds originally contained within the sweet.

The Common Application

By tradition, the Italian confetti are given out at weddings and baptisms, or graduations, often wrapped in a small tulle bag as a gift to the guests. For a wedding, they are said to represent the hope that the new couple will have a fertile marriage. 

The History

The history of throwing confetti can be traced back to ancient Greece. This is a fun and gorgeous way to focus on distinguished guests. The custom of phyllobolia involved showering people with leaves and flower petals during special events like weddings or homecomings. This is also a way of commending the winners of sports competitions.

When approaching the 13th century in Milan, Italy. Around that time, confetti was commonly used by nobles or aristocrats. When they, or at least the members of their entourage are walking down the street, they throw coins, nuts, candies, flowers, and even eggshells filled with perfume at the public they "adores". The idea is to excite onlookers and create a festive atmosphere. It was probably intended to be a strategic PR move, too. Unfortunately, the people at the bottom do not appreciate this gesture. The condescending due to this fundamental class difference makes the low-class people feel absurd.

However, lower-class people mocked the nobles by throwing rotten eggs, and battles among enemy factions or districts became common. Things got so bad that in 1597, the mayor Juan Fernández de Velasco (Juan Fernández de Velasco) issued a ban on throwing eggs, spilling liquids on the street, and other historical events. Customs related to improper behavior in demonstrations.

Balloon Confetti Round Shape

Balloon Confetti Round Shape

The custom disappeared for about a century, coming back in the 1700s in the form of launch of small candies, mostly sugar-coated seeds. The seeds used for the sugar candies were mostly Coriander (coriandolo in Italian), a common plantation in the area : the Italian name for confetti is indeed coriandoli.

When candy is very expensive, people throw chalk pellets because it is cheap, relatively safe to throw, and mostly harmless. By 1808, chalk pellets were the only objects allowed to be thrown during the parade—again, it appeared to be due to their harmless nature. But within a few years, the chalk pellets battle between revellers became very vicious, and chalk pellets were banned. The citizens responded by returning to throwing dirt.

In 1875, an Italian businessman from Milan, Enrico Mangili, began selling paper confetti for use in the upcoming carnevale di Milano, the yearly parade held along the streets of the city.

Scientific American recorded that the throwing of paper confetti (plain shredded paper) occurred at the 1885 New Year's Eve in Paris. Paper confetti became common in all of Europe in just a couple of decades later (unlike ticker tape parades, which never received as wide a diffusion as they did in the US).

Until the late 1990s, game shows still used the classic balloon tradition to win big prizes.

Balloon Confetti Heart shape

Balloon Confetti Heart shape

Today, people use confetti in various celebrations. Like the ancient Greeks, we tend to sprinkle small pieces of lightweight materials on newlyweds and victorious athletes to express our blessings.

Dongyang Hexing mainly manufactures and supplies a variety of the seasonal and party products, and also some foil DIY items. If you are in need of them, please contact us.

+8618767009234 hasonhexin@163.com +86 187 6700 9234

+86 187 6700 9234