James Bond, Idris Elba, and David Beckham all do it. Some of the world's most stylish and swoon-worthy men have something in common... They know how to rock a pair of cufflinks.
The modern-day man is following the fashion trend of, "refined casual." This explains why men's suit sales are up 10%. Cufflinks provide a way to show off your unique personality and style, without being too over the top. From a dashing businessman to a dapper dad, anyone can pull them off.
They combine function and style, as a subtle style detail that people notice. You can even personalize, customize, and engrave them. Personalized cufflinks make for great gift ideas or for enhancing your own personal style.
So, here's more on the how, when, and why to rock those cufflinks.
What Are Cufflinks?
Oh, how the times have changed. Cufflinks once only adorned the wrists of royalty and Fortune 500 company owners. Yet, the perception of cufflinks has shifted. Now they are a way to add a sense of personal style to any gentleman's wardrobe. They are a little bit of a fashion statement with a whole lot of functionality.
Cufflinks get worn with a long-sleeved shirt. They take the place of buttons and keep your cuffs closed together. They are removable unlike buttons and have a special meaning to the person wearing them. Cufflinks may look a little intimidating to someone who has never worn them. But they are rather easy to use.
There are 3 main design components, which relate to how to wear cufflinks. The design consists of:
- A round head at the top (this is the most decorative element of the cufflink)
- A long skinny stem or post that runs from the head to the bottom of the cufflink
- A toggle or clasp at the bottom that gets used to fasten the cufflink into place
Some cufflink designs replace the toggle with a stud option. There are also other common cufflink designs, such as ball return, chain link, knots, and locking cufflinks. Some also fasten using magnets or buttons.
How to Wear Cufflinks
Cufflinks can get worn in traditional style, or like the French. A traditional (or single) cuff will have buttonholes on both sides of the cuff opening.
A French (or double) cuff contains two holes on both sides of the cuff opening. The two holes should line up together once the cuff gets folded back.
How to Use Cufflinks
Move the cufflink clasp so it becomes parallel to the cufflink post. In a French style, your cuff should get folded over, so the buttonholes line up together.
A cufflink's sleek design allows you to slide it through the hole opening. The backend should poke through the outer buttonhole. You may have to hold your cuff ends together to get it through.
Once in, you turn the backing into a lock-right position. When the toggle or clasp gets closed, the cuffs are then fastened together.
The only visible part will be the round decorative head. It peeks out through the buttonholes of the shirt cuff.
When to Wear Cufflinks
Cufflinks have evolved and become a wardrobe staple of the modern man. Wear them to work, a special event, or a nice Sunday brunch. Or as Barney Stinson would say, anytime you want to look good and "suit up!"
The beauty of cufflinks is that you can own many pairs, for all different occasions. You can choose dress shirts made with holes for cufflinks. Or you can have a tailor remove the buttons of a favorite shirt to make room for your cufflinks.
This means that you can wear cufflinks with any shirt color, material, or style you wish. The cufflinks can pick the shirt, not the other way around. Shirts with cufflinks should get worn with some type of jacket.
Black and White-Tie Events
Prepare to go full-on fancy for these types of events. A white-tie event is even more formal than black tie.
You'll want your cufflinks to be a bit more discreet in this case. Select an elegant yet subtle style to pair with your black dress coat or tuxedo. You may even want to adorn a wing-collared shirt with studs and cufflinks.
Don't forget about the "creative" black tie events, which often have a fun theme. This is your best opportunity to wear some cool customized cufflinks.
You can have a bit more fun with your cufflinks at these types of events. Pair them with a nice formal suit. A nice pair of suit cufflinks is usually the first set a man buys or receives as a gift.
Be sure to show off your cufflinks. When wearing a formal jacket, the cuffs should extend a bit beyond the sleeve of the jacket. You may need to tug down on the cuffs a little, so they are more visible.
This depends on your company dress code and the industry you work in. As long as you're wearing a dress shirt and suit jacket, cufflinks are in. It always pays off to dress to impress during client meetings.
Some offices are strict during the week, then more casual on Fridays. Choose a standard pair for everyday wear and a fun pair for Fridays. Monogrammed cufflinks are a popular choice for staying classy yet casual.
Creating Your Cufflinks Collection
The best part about cufflinks is that you can build your collection as time goes on. Invest in some luxury pieces, while still leaving room for more fun and casual styles.
Have fun with different materials, textures, colors, and patterns of cufflinks. If your outfit is neutral, use cufflinks to add a pop of color, such as red. It may sound crazy, but women are more attracted to men who wear red.
Customized cufflinks also make for fantastic gift ideas. Birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, and Father's Day should all be a good reason for a new pair of cufflinks. These custom handwritten cufflinks make for the perfect groom gift.
Be sure to pair cufflinks well with other accessories. Match platinum cufflinks with a platinum watch, rose gold cufflinks with a rose gold watch, etc.
Customized Cufflinks, Because Buttons Are Boring...
Cufflinks offer a versatile way to enhance any man's wardrobe. They add style and class without being too ostentatious.
It's like how a woman feels about the perfect piece of jewelry to complement her outfit. So be sure to add customized cufflinks to your next list of great gift ideas.
In need of more gift ideas for that special guy in your life? Check out this list of personalized gifts and jewelry for men.