Cufflinks Rock! Think about it – when else can a man wear a piece of jewellery that’s both functional and ornamental? You’re missing out if you’ve never tried them.
Cufflinks might be traditionally associated with men’s semiformal evening wear (the tuxedo ensemble), but these versatile little fasteners can fill a surprising range of wardrobe roles.
WHAT ARE CUFFLINKS?
Cufflinks are tools for fastening shirt cuffs and keeping them closed. They’re an alternative to the buttons that are commonly sewn onto shirt cuffs. The defining feature is that cufflinks are separate objects: they are fully removable and interchangeable.
Cufflinks come in many shapes, sizes, styles, and materials. They usually offer a little more contrast than a button, and are considered a more ornamental option, but they’re not inherently more or less formal.
THE BASIC CUFFLINK: HOW IT WORKS
A cufflink fastens a shirt by sliding through holes on either side of the cuff opening, then swinging into a locked or fixed position to hold the sides together.
The most common cufflink is as the picture above.
Cufflinks are fastened by setting the toggle in its closed position, so that there is a straight post descending from the underside of the head.
The post slides through the holes on both sides of the cuffs, and then the toggle is swung outward to prevent the post from sliding back out.
That holds the cufflink in place, with the front face of the insert member placed decoratively atop the buttonholes.
TYPES OF CUFFLINKS
There are dozens of variations on the basic theme of the hinged cufflink, and several other mechanical alternatives as well. Here are some of the most common types of cufflinks:
Watch the video below to learn about the different types of cufflinks and how to wear them in less than a minute!
WHEN TO WEAR CUFFLINKS
The most recognisable role for cufflinks is as the formal and semiformal alternative to buttons. If you’re wearing a suit with a white tie or black tie outfit properly, it will have links at the cuffs (and often studs instead of buttons on the shirtfront as well).
That’s hardly the extent of their wardrobe functionality, however. Shirts ranging from plain white business dress to colourful and casual options come with French cuffs, or with single cuffs with holes on each side rather than a button and a buttonhole. Furthermore, tailors can easily convert any shirt with a basic button-and-buttonhole arrangement into one that takes cufflinks, simply by removing the button and inserting a small buttonhole in its place.
That means you can – if you want to – wear cufflinks with everything from your best business shirt to a ratty flannel work shirt. And yes, some people are doing the latter – never underestimate the contemporary hipster’s love for mixing high fashion with low.
Practically speaking, most men will wear cufflinks in business and relatively formal social settings, as an accent to a suit-and-tie ensemble. That said, more relaxed links are perfectly acceptable with a sports jacket, and can add an air of playfulness that simple buttons don’t provide.
There are no hard and fast rules. The only limits are your collection of suitable shirts – and, of course, your budget.
What are you still waiting for? Shop www.thelittlelink.com today for your pair now!