My mum found these ‘Genuine Inn Sign cocktail sticks’ at the very back of a cupboard in my Gran’s kitchen. I fell in love with them immediately and took them home to admire.
The packaging is perfect – the 50s chartreuse green, the mix of typefaces, the copy and the illustrations on the back:
They’re such an incongruous mix of swinging 50s modernism and Ye Olde England mythology. Each cocktail stick is a miniature pub sign from a ‘Coaching Inn of England’. I wonder how many are still open today.
‘Coaching Inn’ reminds me of Georgette Heyer novels, heroines eloping with Regency cads on uncomfortable horse-driven trips to Gretna Green.
My mum thinks my Grandad must have bought these – I wonder when, and where? They’ve been in the back of a cupboard for 50 odd years, obviously too nice for everyday.
I’m don’t think my grandparents were the type to need tiny novelty sticks for their cocktail olives on a regular basis. They were from Shropshire, not the natural home of the martini.
I haven’t taken them out of the packaging, I don’t think I ever will. They look nice propped up on the bookshelf in our living room though.