In the 1920's—a few years after most middle class men lost their valets—someone invented snapping cufflinks (like the pair shown above). The idea was simple: before putting-on the shirt, the two halves of one cufflink could be inserted into the button holes on each cuff (using two hands). Once all four "halves" were in-place, the man could don the shirt and simply snap the links together. This made dressing alone easy and fast—no more struggling with one hand to insert an unwieldy cufflink on the opposite wrist. This style of snapping cufflinks only enjoyed a brief period of production. By 1941, the U.S. was drawn-in to World War Two and men's jewelry makers suddenly were busy making accessories (cufflinks, pins and medallions) for military uniforms. On the home front, luxuries like cufflinks were put aside for the time being. By the time the war was finished, and civilians began buying niceties again (like cufflinks), Modernism was on stage and the times favored bigger, chunkier links. Big cufflinks required a more substantial mounting system—and the toggling "T back" finding was designed. Thus, the smart and functional "snapping cufflink," after two short decades, was no longer in vogue.
The cufflinks above, made in the 1920's or 1930's, feature glass lapis lazuli cabochons. Please click on the photo above to learn more about them.
More Father's Day gift ideas tomorrow.
LEO Design's Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed. While we contemplate our next shop location, please visit our on-line store which continues to operate (www.LEOdesignNYC.com).
Follow us on Instagram: "leodesignhandsomegifts"
Follow us on Facebook: "LEO Design - Handsome Gifts"