Grandpa Bob’s collection of cufflinks

When I came across Grandpa’s jewelry box full of handsome-looking cufflinks, I began to imagine what would it have been like to live during a time when men sought out these classy pieces as part of their daily wardrobe.  Cufflinks represent a time when men dressed up for events that we normally do not associate with formal attire, such as going to the movies, the corner store, or even to a baseball game.  According to clevercufflinks.com,  wearing cufflinks “was the mark of a gentleman”.

Luxmag.org states that the function of cufflinks were to help men express their individuality while amidst a sea of business suits and tailored shirts.  Here is a small sample of Grandpa’s collection which shows that he, indeed, achieved this goal:

He showed pride in his surname:

“R” for Robert

The following most likely reflected his childhood in Michigan:

Let’s go fishin’!

Birds in flight

And some just showed off Grandpa’s stylish side:

This pair has an art deco feel to it.

Gladiator cufflinks

So, why are cufflinks no longer commonplace?  Luxmag.org explains that in the 1970s, buttons replaced cufflinks in men’s attire, and the casual look gained popularity as a result.  In the 1990s, cufflinks regained some notoriety with businessmen as well as within men’s evening attire.  And that has been its home ever since.

I secretly hope that dressing up for more than weddings and business meetings will come back in style soon.  🙂

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