Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Cocktail Hour Blog Hop!

So here's the skinny...Amy Taylor Freeland  sent each person the name of a cocktail.  Our job was to google the cocktail, and use the ingredients, image, color, season it's usually enjoyed, era it became famous, or whatever else to inspire any piece of jewelry.

My cocktail assisgnment is the  Black & Tan

photo courtesy of
I was immediately thirsty!  Now, I am Dutch, German, French, and a splash of Blackfoot Indian.  Not a spot of Irish Blood in my genes.  However, my roots include Milwaukee, Wisconsin, appropriate!  Of course, if you have ever been to Milwaukee, the beer is not usually this dark! :)

Through my research, I found the following description on Wikipedia:

Black and Tan is a drink made from a blend of pale ale and a dark beer such as a stout or porter, most often Guinness. Sometimes a pale lager is used instead of ale; this is usually called a half and half. Contrary to popular belief, however, Black and Tan as a mixture of two beers is not a term commonly used in Ireland[ due to the association with the Royal Irish Constabulary Reserve Force, nicknamed the Black and Tans.

Which led me to further research on the Black and Tans (plural):

The Black and Tans (Irish: Dúchrónaigh) was one of two ad hoc paramilitary units, composed largely of British World War I veterans, employed by the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) as Temporary Constables from 1920 to 1921 to suppress revolution in Ireland (the other body being the Auxiliaries). The unit's nickname arose from the colour of the improvised khaki uniforms initially worn by its members. Although established to target the Irish Republican Army, the Black and Tans became notorious through their numerous attacks on the Irish civilian population.

I knew the history of the Black and Tans  (the paramilitary units...not the beverage) and their atrocities on the Irish civilians...but, this is a jewelry and/or cocktail blog hop...not a history lesson!

The Recipe To prepare a Black and Tan in the American way, first fill a glass halfway with the ale, then add the Guinness Draught (from the can, bottle, or tap). The top layer is best poured slowly over an upside-down tablespoon placed over the glass to avoid splashing and mixing the layers. A specially designed black-and-tan spoon is bent in the middle so that it can balance on the edge of the pint-glass for easier pouring.
Image courtesy of Wikipedia - I love this spoon!
Well, I happened to have in my stash a GORGEOUS focal bead by Donna Millard in -- what else -- Black & Tan!  Just look at the detail in this bead - it has been sitting on my bench for months, where I stare at it daily and admire its beauty!

Now, I have never used a focal bead of this size before. But, thanks to a Kristi Bowman, I found the PERFECT bail! Kristi's components - whether handmade in copper or silver - just breathtaking!  She works that copper with fire to create the most beautiful colors!
Photo courtesy of Kristi Bowman

Forgive the multiple shots, but I am playing with taking my photos outside in natural light versus inside with my photo lights. This is proving to be an ongoing learning process!

I used Czech glass seed beads - in Black, Tan, Ivory, and Copper, for my chain, and copper toggle.

I actually purchased some Guinness (er,,, for the pictures, of course), but I must confess, I have not yet opened the bottle (I stress the word YET)!

Thanks for providing me this inspiration for this creation, Amy! And thank you to Donna Millard and Kristi Bowman for their creativity, as well! I had a blast! 

Please be sure to visit all of the participants, and as always, thanks so much for stopping by!

Hostess: Copper Diem