The Cufflink Past and Present - A Movie Star History

Posted on October 23 2015

In the 2012 James Bond movie Skyfall one of the best moments is when Daniel Craig jumps on to a moving train. James Bond is pursuing a bad guy and is desperate to get his hands on some classified information which his adversary holds. Bond’s first thought when he lands on the train is to adjust his cufflinks. It’s classic James Bond. A memorable moment.

Antique Silver Cylinder Flip CufflinksEveryone’s favorite British hero can be in the fight of his life and still find time to make sure his shirt looks good. Of course his Tom Ford suit and custom made Striped T Cylinder Cufflinks portray the very essence of the modern day man. Such a sophisticated man of today would not be seen with mere buttons on his cuffs. It simply isn’t done.

But what about the origin of the cufflink? Well it goes back way further than our hero James Bond.

The cufflink has a long, interesting past which is entwined with the evolution of the shirt. We have to go back to the middle ages to see how cufflinks developed to solve the fundamental problem - how do you deal with shirt cuffs?

At first the answer was strings or buttons. But that was never really a long term solution. Fashion had to intervene somehow.

Legend would have you believe that the cufflink was first introduced to the masses in the book, “The Count of Monte Cristo” by Alexander Dumas. One of the characters he created always wore huge diamonds on his shirt cuffs. The effect on the fashion direction of the people was unprecedented. Legend would have us believe that this book inspired the French cuff. Of course the cufflink is tailor made for the French cuff - and the rest is history.

Envy got the better of the readers of The Count of Monte Cristo and tailors had a great idea of how to incorporate this into their designs. The combination of the popular media and consumer demand meant that the modern cufflink was born.

Cufflinks have always been associated with a man’s wish to keep up with fashion but also to be an individual. In the 18th century shirts started becoming stiffer to keep up with the new fashions. Buttons and strings just didn’t help much with the stiffer fabrics. Cufflinks offered the best solution and were a stylish addition for the fashion conscious.

The greatest popularity of the cufflink was in Victorian times. Stiff formal fabric was the height of fashion for the middle and upper classes and cufflinks were very popular.

The 1970s saw a big decline in the popularity of the cufflink. The fashions of the time were very much about moving away from tradition and the cufflink went into a decline for a while. The Hippy Generation simply did not embrace the cufflink and it went out of fashion for a while.

Good ideas always come back and the cufflink was not out of favor for very long. Television and film has played a huge role in the revival of the popularity of this iconic fashion accessory.

Many say that it was the highly popular British television series of the 1980s “Brideshead Revisited” that sparked the revival of interest in the cufflink. Evelyn Waugh’s story of the lives of two men who meet at Oxford University in the 1920s captured the imagination of millions of television viewers around the world. The costumes were outstanding and the lure of the upper class fashions lead, some would say, to a revival of the cufflink.

Which brings us back to James Bond and his long history of cuff links. They appeared in the very first Bond movie, “Doctor No” and take us right up to the present day with the much anticipated “Spectre”. First worn by many people’s idea of the perfect Bond - Sean Connery, the British spy has always made formal dress look cool. Very cool.

The popularity of the cufflink is even linked to the British Royal Family. Prince GeorgeJames Bond Martini Cufflinks is said to have received a monogrammed pair of cufflinks to mark his Christening from India Hicks. Prince George has a very special pair of cufflinks monogrammed with the letter G. You may remember the socialite turned fashion designer India Hicks as one of the bridesmaids from the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer.

But you don’t have to be a royal or James Bond to enjoy the sophistication of wearing a great pair of cufflinks. They say so much about your individuality. There are so many to choose from that you will surely find your niche.

Consider a special engraved cufflink to make a special occasion. Maybe a wedding, a christening or a promotion at work. Or a Star Wars cufflink to celebrate the release of The Force Awakens. Sports fans will love our range of cufflinks to suit everyone’s special interests. You can even choose a USB flash drive cufflink. The choices are endless.

We can’t promise that you will be quite as cool as James Bond but you will be wearing something your friends will secretly envy.

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