Accessories for the Natural Man - III


English Art Deco Repp Stripe Cufflinks with Black and Tortoiseshell Enameling (LEO Design)


We're spending a few days showcasing some accessories "for the Natural Man"—cufflinks in the subtle, low-key shades of brown, rust, cream, black and white.  You'll find them (and many others) for sale on the LEO Design website.

Many people assume that the "repp" in "Repp Stripe" refers to the repeating pattern of distinctive, colored stripes often shown in ties or foulards. In truth, "repp" refers to the repeating tiny ribs woven into the silk fabric from which the ties are made (regardless of the color pattern).

In the Medieval age, groups of knights would enter battle wearing distinctive heraldic colors or carrying flags which indicated the fighting team to which they belonged.  Repp stripes are an evolution of this idea, adopted by (originally male) groups to distinguish themselves from other groups: schools, military regiments, social clubs, sports teams. Customized striped patterns and colors would be adopted as the "modern heraldry" of a specific group, usually woven into silk ties for their members to wear.  In England alone, hundreds of unique Repp Stripe patterns can be linked precisely to a specific organization, regiment or team. As Repp Stripes became fashionable to a wider audience, many new patterns were no doubt invented by graphic designers based on aesthetics alone (and not associated with a particular organization).

I do not know to which group these Repp Stripe cufflinks belong.  But I liked the understated, natural colors—black stripes on a tortoiseshell brown background (with just a hint of copper dust to provide minimal sparkle).  Please click on the photo above to learn more about them.

More "Cufflinks for the Natural Man" tomorrow and in days to come.


Though our Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed, LEO Design is still alive and well!  Please visit our on-line store where we continue to sell Handsome Gifts (

We also can be found in Pittsburgh's historic "Strip District" at Mahla & Co. Antiques ( or in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (

Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only).  917-446-4248