Flanderian

Connoisseur
Double sided, of course, as the swivel backed variety don't deserve our attention. :pic12337:

These cufflinks continue to beguile me, even after ages, because they're potentially both beautiful and unique. Most are vintage/estate/antique, all terms for not recently made. They're known by a variety of terms; intaglio, because they're made via a similar process to intaglio printing, and are also called Essex crystal, because some are. But the title of this thread most accurately describes their nature. A cabochon shaped piece of glass or crystal is first hand-carved from the flat side of the cabochon in a intaglio/reverse relief process so that when viewed from that side it forms a hollow figure, whereas from the domed side, the figure appears three dimensional. This is then hand-painted on the reverse side to produce the appearance of a floating 3 dimensional object suspended in the glass or crystal. (Rock crystal is roughly 25% harder than typical glass, and Essex crystal is a commonly used term for such. But be assured some will also apply the term to those made of only glass.) These cabochons are then mounted in gold, silver or lesser metals.

Obviously, there are differing levels of quality depending upon the fineness of the carving, painting and materials. But even comparatively humble versions can be handsome. And the finer versions are small works of art. I find they form a useful niche in a man's cufflink wardrobe. Since the motifs employed are often sporting in nature, many of these links are aesthetically compatible for wear with more rustic shirts and jackets, where ordinarily cufflinks might look too formal/dressy and out of place.

I've come across more images of some recently, and wish to share them with other members, and would welcome any additions, along with thoughts or questions about them.

IntaglioLinks05.jpg
 
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Flanderian

Connoisseur
To illustrate my contention that such links can be a synergist for wearing French cuffs with more rustic country wear, this is an example.

Let's say you've got a handsome glen plaid tweed, and you have your shirtmaker make a brushed cotton tattersall to pair with it -


RealTweed.jpg



It would be fine to have him do one with conventional barrel cuffs, and that is both a handsome and safe option. But you enjoy wearing links and feel like something a bit different, you'd like French cuffs. Most links are made to be dressy and elegant, and as such, pair best when the rest of your attire is also.

There are other less common materials; among them leather, wood and ceramics are made into less formal but handsome links. They can other handsome options for your suit and new shirt, but, IMHO, none better than a well selected pair glass or crystal links -


IntaglioLinks01.jpg
 
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Oldsarge

Moderator and Bon Vivant
No, not horsey, huntin' dogs and shotguns. And I emailed Hamshere for a price quote. Apparently they don't want to encourage business from the colonies . . .
 

Flanderian

Connoisseur
No, not horsey, huntin' dogs and shotguns. And I emailed Hamshere for a price quote. Apparently they don't want to encourage business from the colonies . . .
Not sure I can locate shotguns, but game birds and dogs aplenty. I like equine motifs, but in addition to admiring the pair above, I wanted to illustrate a significant aspect of such links. They're small, as all cufflinks should be, and their juxtaposition beside the penny presents the scale very well. The small size make such links a very different proposition from what their effect would were they large.

You may be right about Hamshere's reluctance, though it's also likely that the rather casual nature of some UK e-commerce is asserting itself. But in the meantime, how about some game birds? (Hunting dogs, anon.)


IntaglioLinks19.jpg
 

Flanderian

Connoisseur
Are they for sale?
If not now, they were in the past. I've harvested the images from the net as a whole. I'll look again, and see if I can find the original source. But a note; from the limited amount I can discern from this one photo, these look to be of particularly fine quality. And from what I've seen so far, such links, whether vintage or new,, tend to be one-offs, and carry a four figure price tag.

If I can't locate these, I'll let you know if I encounter any that are similar. 👍
 

Flanderian

Connoisseur
Are they for sale?
Ah . . . found them!

But as I feared, a BIG number! :eek:


While I was looking, I came upon these, which are somewhat similar as a motif.

IntaglioLinks32.jpg


Obviously the quality is not as fine, but the price is surprisingly little. One reason the price is surprising is that these are being sold as "Krementz correct." Krementz is a defunct jewelry manufacturer for which there is a collectors market. I would suspect any combination of the following; not Krementz, Lucite re-pop, or significantly damaged crystal. Unfortunately, the domed part of a cabochon is very susceptible to scratches and chips, which tend to mar the aesthetic.

But for what they're asking, IMHO, it's worth the gamble. And if my concerns prove moot, superb value.

 
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