Vintage Cufflinks: How Old Are They?

Vintage Cufflinks

So, you’ve been collecting some vintage cufflinks. Sooner or later you start wondering just how old some of them are.

It’s only natural once you start developing an interest in “vintage cufflinks”. There are countless designs and styles of cufflinks. Whether it is the mechanical design or the aesthetic design… there is plenty to love about cufflinks.

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Vintage Shopping is an Opportunity to Time Travel!

Over the years, I’ve come up with a list that I use to date the cufflinks I sell in my Website Direct store.

I’m not saying this is a definitive list, but it’s the best I’ve got to work with for now. As I learn something new, I add it to my list.

These are some great tips on how to buy vintage cufflinks. Learn what’s real and what’s not when buying cufflinks.



Just How Vintage Is It?

  • In simple terms, something more than 20 years old is vintage and something more than 100 years old is antique.
  • Copyright symbols do not appear on jewellery manufactured before 1955.
  • Unless it has been kept in its original felt-lined box, authentic vintage cufflinks, tie clasps, etc., should show signs of wear.



A great pick-up line, but I’m not talking about that kind of dating. 🙂

Dating Vintage Cufflinks:

  • Late 1800s cufflinks included features like a fixed arm (no moving parts), an “s” shaped bar, a ball (or bean) styled back.
  • 1900s/1910s cufflinks featured a bent arm (for easier use).
    Vintage 1890s-1900s Cufflinks - Antique
    Vintage Cufflinks 1890s-1900s – Antique
  • 1920s cufflinks introduced the chain-link feature (where both parts were decorated) and also the Kum-A-Part cuff buttons.
    Vintage Cufflinks 1920s SWANK Kum-A-Part
    Vintage Cufflinks 1920s SWANK Kum-A-Part
    Vintage Cufflinks 1920s SWANK Kum-A-Part (snap cuff links)
  • 1930s were crazy with snap cuff links/buttons after the popularity seen by SWANK B&W with their Kum-A-Part design.
  • Late 1930s saw the introduction of the toggle-styled back.
    Vintage Cufflinks 1930s SWANK
    Vintage Cufflinks 1930s SWANK
  • 1940s cufflinks were crazy with this new toggle invention.
  • 1955 – SWANK introduced the rounded style of toggle back. Prior to this the toggle designs were square-shaped. And again all cufflink designers followed suit.
    Vintage Cufflinks 1960s
    Vintage Cufflinks 1960s



A Little Bit About Swank… and the Swank Company History.

In my experience, these days the SWANK name appears on more vintage mens jewellery than any other maker’s name. This is a testament to the quality of their pieces.

SWANK commenced in 1897 as the Attleboro Manufacturing Company and started using the SWANK hallmark in the late 1920s.

Two of the SWANK changes can be used to help date their pieces:

  • The Swank cufflink toggles were angular (square) up until 1954. From 1955, the Swank cufflink toggles were rounded. As Swank were a leader in this design, this difference can also be used to date cufflinks by other designers.
  • The Swank hallmark used angular block lettering up until 1940. Swank used a hallmark of rounded block lettering from the mid-1930s onwards. The styles of hallmark overlap during the late 1930s.

Vintage Cufflinks SWANK
SWANK cufflinks with square toggle & angular hallmark lettering

Vintage Cufflinks Swank Rounded Toggle
SWANK cufflinks with rounded toggle

Swank Rounded Hallmark Lettering
SWANK rounded hallmark lettering



Enjoy your vintage journey!

Collecting mens vintage jewellery is the coolest hobby in the world!

Wear your vintage cufflinks, tie clasps, etc., to work every day and dazzle the office.

Build your outfit around a fabulous piece of vintage jewellery that is uniquely “you”, and it feels wonderful!

Enjoy your journey collecting Vintage Cufflinks – an exciting and rewarding journey.

I hope this page has given you some answers on these topics and more:

  • vintage cufflinks
  • vintage swank cufflinks
  • how old are snap cuff links
  • vintage cufflinks 1920s
  • old cufflinks from 1920-1960
  • classic cufflinks
  • vintage cufflinks for men
  • cufflink toggles
  • cufflink hallmarks
  • old antique cuff links
  • retro cufflinks

I hope you found what you were looking for or learned something interesting.

My eBook has the information from this page plus more about tie clasps, cufflinks and collar bars. Download it for free today. This is a great resource to keep handy when you’re shopping for vintage men’s jewellery online.

Download this list and much more in the FREE ebook – TIPS FOR BUYING VINTAGE JEWELLERY

Tips for Buying Mens Vintage Jewellery


See also:

Vintage Tie Clasps: How Old Are They?
Vintage Collar Bars: How Old Are They?
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