Nouveau Novelties - III


American Art Nouveau Sterling Silver Cufflinks with Turquoise & White Enameling and Hearts Border (LEO Design)


For a few days, we would like to share some of our Early Twentieth Century Art Nouveau cufflinks—from England and from America.

Enameled cufflinks are probably my favorites.  And, while most of our collection of enameled cufflinks are from the Art Deco period, I occasionally acquire an earlier pair (from the Art Nouveau period) or a later pair (from the Modernist period).  

Enameling is the process of laying glass powder upon metal and then heating it to the point where the glass powder melts into molten glass.  Upon cooling, the "enameling" is simply a layer of glass (often colored) lying upon a base of metal (sometimes engraved in a process called guilloché).  Enameling provides a rich, luxurious surface and allows for a creative explosion of colorful graphic design. Fine, machine-turned engraving (beneath the enamel) provides a whole new dimension of pattern and design.

This pair of cufflinks were made in the Teens or Twenties—towards the end of the Art Nouveau movement.  They are made of sterling silver, exhibit machine-turned guilloché work, and are embellished with fresh turquoise and white enameling.  The "hearts" which emerge through the turquoise enameled bands are part of the sterling silver base metal. Click on the photo above to learn more about them.

More Art Nouveau cufflinks tomorrow.


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