Bankers and bootleggers aren’t the only ones who should feel comfortable wearing cuff links as every day attire. Unfortunately the introduction most men have to sleeve studs these days is pouring them out of the small Ziploc bag that came with a rented tux.
But good cuff links add a classic, personal touch of style, and taking your French cuffs to the next level is just as easy as building a collection of any other accessory: You just need to kick it off with something simple. “A great starting point is in a classic monogrammed pair, hand engraved,” says Jeff Bennett, Vice President at Tiffany & Co. “They can easily be worn daily.”
And don't worry, there aren’t restrictions; if you're putting on a tie, you can wear cuff links.
“They're a versatile and an integral part of a man’s wardrobe,” adds Bennett. “Whether you are dressing for a formal event, heading to the office, or going out to dinner with friends or a loved one, a pair of cuff links add a great finishing touch for your look.”
Another great option is a pair of yellow gold or sterling silver knot cuff links. “These can dress up classic blazer and slacks while also complementing a business suit.” You can always take that a step down, of course, and go with the cloth knots that you’ll find at most menswear stores, which add a coordinated pop of color to match your tie, socks, or pocket square.
There’s also something at the other end of the spectrum: “For the man looking to add flair to a formal occasion, a pair diamond studded cuff links could be the perfect option.”
Once you have a few all-purpose pairs in your collection, feel free to venture out a bit more boldly. Bennett doesn’t approve of snobbery, and encourages some out-of-the-box thinking when it comes to the final touch: ”Men can have fun with cuff links,” he says, “and use them in a way to highlight a personal interest or hobby.”
This may not be the time to glue your son’s Hot Wheels onto a T-bar, but everything from coinage cuff links to superhero studs is acceptable within reason. Obviously you should avoid wearing ruby red dice to a first dinner with your girlfriend's parents, and the same goes for liquor logos, flaming guitar picks, and anything that resembles an innuendo if you’re about to be in someone’s wedding album.
Tiffany offers a variety of cuff link designs including airplanes, roadsters, and nautically inspired options, which Bennett says are “a fun way for men to express their personalities. Similar to how women utilize a handbag or pair of shoes to express their own style. A pair of cuff links can do the same for a man.”