Cufflinks first appeared in Europe at the beginning of the seventeenth century. Little by little, they replaced ribbons and laces which until then fastened sleeves in an elegant way.
Sophistication over the years
First cufflinks were gold buttons linked by a small chain. At the end of the nineteenth century, the Industrial Revolution favours their rapid development. A wider range of cufflinks can be produced thanks to low-cost production capacities. At the same time, shirt evolves to become the archetypal smart garment.
French cuffs shirt emerges, but remains confine to the upper echelons of society.
The role of fashion designers
Cufflinks get common from the beginning of the twentieth century. Famous jewellers (Cartier, Tiffany...) get inspiration from art movements (Cubism, Art Deco) to imagine new designs, using ever more refined materials: precious stones, mother-of-pearl...
A revival - from jewel to must-have fashion accessory
In the 1970s, French cuffs shirt have been widely replaced by sewn button shirt.
The cufflinks revival occurs in the 1990s, thanks to new creations from Paul Smith, Gucci... Cufflinks become more fun and set up as an indispensable fashion accessory for men as for women.
Today, as a distinguished fashion accessory, cufflinks are acclaimed in professional environments which requires refined clothing or in events such as weddings or urbane parties.