Let's end our collection of Art Nouveau cufflinks with this understated—but nevertheless handsome—pair of Edwardian English Art Nouveau cufflinks. A scrolling botanical bas relief covers half the surface area of these golden, elongate-hexagonal cufflinks.
"Edwardian" usually refers to the period of Edward VII's reign: from 1901 (when his mother, Queen Victoria, died) to 1910 (when he died). Edward, nearly 60 when he was crowned, was a fashionable and socially-prominent monarch who lived in a "modern" age—that is, a period when information, news and photo images were able to be widely and quickly distributed. Thus, his sartorial choices and leisure behaviors were quickly disseminated around the world—where they could make an immediate impact and be promptly emulated.
Although the Edwardian Age has developed a romantic "burnished glow" in the decades which followed it, it was also a time of tremendous social and political change, in England and around the world. Workers—who constituted the largest percentage of the British populace—began to perceive the injustice of their social inequality and they began to demand justice. Likewise, women were becoming increasingly educated and aware of their position. They began pushing for the vote and other measures of equal rights.
It was during the Edwardian Era that other countries (especially Germany, Russia and the United States) began to challenge England's dominance as the greatest empire. And, if all this social, economic and political change were not already enough, let's not forget that The Great War (WWI) was just around the corner (1914-1918). In this sense, the Edwardian Era was "the last lazy afternoon of innocence" before the world was to change forever in the Teens and Twenties.
Please click on the photo above to learn more about these cufflinks.
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 (www.LEOdesignNYC.com).
We also can be found in Pittsburgh's historic "Strip District" at Mahla & Co. Antiques (www.mahlaantiques.com) or in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (www.antiquecenterofstrabane.com).
Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only). 917-446-4248