Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Recent Additions - Cufflinks and Stickpin

Recent additions to the Antique Cufflink Gallery include elegant guilloche enamel and diamond cufflinks by Whiteside & Blank, striking sapphire and diamond links, frosty platinum and gold snowflakes and an Art Deco pair featuring blue enamel and golden pinstripe.

Whiteside & Blank blue guilloche enamel and diamond cufflinks. (J9227)

Classical Jazz  Rich blue enamels with a jazzy engraved pattern of radiating zigzags surrounded by classically-inspired laurel wreath borders.  Created by Whiteside & Blank in 14kt gold, circa 1920.    Cost:  $1,625

Carter, Gough platinum snowflake cufflinks. (J9221)

Platinum Snowflakes   Shimmering snowflakes fall in frosty platinum skies surrounded by striking octagonal borders.  What more could you ask for in elegant Art Deco cufflinks?  Crafted in platinum and 14kt gold, circa 1930.    Cost:  $945

Windrose  A wind or compass rose surrounds diamonds and sapphires while stylized roses, dentil meanders and milgrained edges swirl around the periphery.  Crafted in 14kt white and yellow gold,  circa 1925.    Cost:  $825

Larter 14kt yellow gold and blue enamel cufflinks. (J9225)

Pinstripe Blues  Blue enamel accents and golden pinstripes light up these elegant cufflinks from the 1920s.  A mix of jazz and elegance equally well suited for the opera or a speakeasy.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1920.    Cost:  $725

In the Antique Stickpin Gallery recent additions include a fiery French chimera from the Art Nouveau era.

French chimera stickpin. (J9214)

La Chimère  A fierce French chimera vigilantly guards the top of this golden jewel.  The perfect personal gargoyle to keep evil spirits away from one's lapel or tie.  Crafted in 18kt gold, circa 1900.    Cost:  $725

These and other fine jewels can be found in
the Antique and Estate Jewelry Galleries

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Art of the Enameller - Guilloche Enamel Cufflinks

Whiteside & Blank blue guilloche enamel cufflinks.

One of the pleasures of antique cufflinks is exploring the great variety of decorative techniques used in their creation. Among the rarer and more beautiful cufflinks are those decorated with guilloche enameling.

Guilloche enamel brings together two venerable and exacting arts - enameling and engine turning. Enameling is the art of fusing powdered glass onto a metal or other substrate. As the powdered glass melts and cools it forms a lustrous vitreous surface. Enameled jewels date back to the ancient Mycenaean civilization of Cyprus. The Mycenaean ornaments (sorry, no cufflinks were found) date to the 13th century BC. The beautiful blue enamel cufflinks pictured at the top of this note are a little more contemporary. They date from around 1920 and were created in the jewelry workshops of Whiteside & Blank.

Beautifully engine-turned platinum cufflinks by Carrington.

Engine turning (or guilloche) is the art of mechanically engraving intricate, repeating designs on a metallic or other surface. Among the common guilloche patterns are shimmering radiant stars, wavy lines and spirals, pinstripes, concentric circles and other figures. The Carrington cufflinks pictured above are a beautiful example of the engine turner's art with jagged radiating curves surrounded by an equally intricate border. The depth and fineness of the engraving gives the design a striking three-dimensional appearance.

The allure of the machine - a rose engine lathe, circa 1800.

The art of engine turning emerged in Germany during the early 1500s with the invention of the rose engine lathe. Initially applied to softer materials like ivory, the technique was soon adapted to create elaborate designs on metal and glass. At one time in Germany engine turning (or "rose turning") was an enthusiastically pursued pastime of rulers and noblemen. The rose engine lathes, themselves, are beautifully crafted machines that are as intriguing and intricate as the designs they create.

Carrington purple guilloche enamel cufflinks.

When an engine turned surface is covered with a layer of translucent, colored enamel magic occurs. The colored enamel pools in the valleys of the engraved lines mirroring the engraved design in rich color. Subtle variations in the depth of the engraving are reflected in the shading of the color and the engraved pattern is thrown into stunning relief. The effect is mesmerizing.

Carrington blue-gray guilloche enamel cufflinks.

The enthusiasm for guilloche enameling during the late 19th and early 20th century was sparked by the creations of the master Russian jeweler Peter Carl Faberge. Faberge and his work masters created a dazzling array of enameled jewels and objets d'art. In doing so they elevated the arts of engine turning and enameling to new heights. Among Faberge's many enameled creations were cufflinks, desk accessories and the famous Faberge Easter Eggs.

The above Carrington cufflinks may have been inspired by Faberge's work. The subdued blue-gray enamel and classic canted-corner shape of the cufflinks recalls the elegant jewels of the Russian master. They illustrate the simple, elegant designs favored by Carrington & Co. and the firm's uncompromising commitment to craftsmanship.

William Huger blue guilloche enamel and gold cufflink.

Equal to Carrington & Co. in creating beautiful guilloche enamel cufflinks was William Huger & Company. Of the two firms Carrington was the more prolific. But what Huger lacked in production numbers the firm more than made up for with the beauty of its designs, as illustrated by the above exquisite example.

The above Huger cufflink features an intricately engine-turned pattern wedded with light blue enamel. The effect is like exploding blue fire works in a dark evening sky. Gold borders of foliate and geometric scrolls frame the enamel centers.

Jacob Hookaylo, the Winged Bridge Maker, cufflink.

To close, I offer three more examples of guilloche enamel cufflinks. Two of the cufflinks are from small batch makers, firms that like William Huger created extraordinarily beautiful cufflinks, but only in very limited numbers. The expression "small batch maker" is in analogy to the distillers of fine, but limited run, bourbons and ryes. The other cufflink is by Krementz & Co., the prolific and seemingly ubiquitous manufacturer of fine cufflinks during the late 19th and early 20th century.

Krementz & Co. guilloche enamel cufflink.

Taylor & Co. guilloche enamel cufflink.

To view guilloche enamel and other fine cufflinks,
please visit the Antique Cufflink Gallery.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Recent Additions - Brooch

I have had a very busy month acquiring antique cufflinks, stickpins and brooches, but unfortunately only had time to add a beautiful Art Nouveau brooch in the Antique Brooch Gallery.

Art Nouveau amethyst brooch. (J9223)

Art Nouveau Amethyst  The amethyst rests between the flowing wings of an exotic butterfly or bat. Beneath the amethyst a small pearl glows like a distant full moon.  Created in 14kt gold, circa 1900.
Cost:  $785

Among the recent acquisitions are beautiful guilloche enamel cufflinks, a striking French chimera stickpin and several elegant dress sets set with colored gemstones. These and other fine jewels from the past will be added to the antique and estate jewelry galleries in the next few weeks. So stay tuned!

These and other fine jewels can be found in
the Antique and Estate Jewelry Galleries

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Jacob Hookaylo and the Winged Bridge Maker

Winged Bridge Maker cufflink, circa 1925.

One of the delights of antique cufflinks is exploring the history and discovering forgotten works of the jewelers who created these miniature master pieces. Over the past 150 years firms creating fine jewelry in the United States have numbered in the hundreds, if not more. No doubt a large percentage of these jewelers created cufflinks.

Winged Bridge Maker cufflink, circa 1925.

In several earlier notes (see list below) I wrote about the cufflinks of one of the more mysterious of these talented makers ... the Winged Bridge Maker. Nicknamed for the distinctive wing-like bridges that unite the ends of the cufflinks, this maker created beautiful white and yellow gold cufflinks during the early Art Deco period. The cufflinks sparkle with the exuberance of the Jazz Age featuring finely engraved centers surrounded by bold geometric and foliate borders.

Reverse of cufflinks by Winged Bridge maker.

The cufflinks are identified by the distinctive winged bridges, as well as the quality of the craftsmanship, beauty of the center engraving and bold border work. However, beyond that there are no maker's marks or other clues to the identity of the Winged Bridge Maker. The only marking on the bridges is "14K" for the purity of the gold. Until recently, the maker of these elegant cufflinks has been unidentified.

Jacob Hookaylo cufflink, circa 1925.

The mystery of the Winged Bridge Maker was solved with the help of the above cufflink. Beneath a shimmering layer of dark magenta enamel this cufflink is identical to the example pictured at the beginning of this note. They both have yellow gold centers finely engraved with a pattern of wavy lines creating an optical illusion of stacked boxes. They both have white gold borders with geometric motifs and radiant palmette corners.

The enameled cufflink was created by Jacob Hookaylo, a jeweler of Ukrainian descent who immigrated to the United States and founded a self-named jewelry workshop in Newark, New Jersey around 1920. The cufflink at the beginning of this note is attributed to the Winged Bridge Maker.

Reverse of Jacob Hookaylo cufflink.

On the reverse of the enameled cufflink a winged bridge connects the two ends. The center of the bridge is stamped with the maker's mark of the Hookaylo firm - and "H" within a lateral paralellogram.

Jacob Hookaylo maker's mark.

The bridge of the signed cufflink is angular with hints of Greek key and other geometric motifs. The bridge design reflects the Art Deco style of the 1920s. The bridges of the unsigned cufflinks are more flowing with an Art Nouveau sensibility. However, both cufflinks clearly date from the 1920s as indicated by the use of white gold. The changing bridge design, as well as the introduction of enamel work, may reflect the evolution of the Hookaylo firm as it adapted to the changing fashions of the Jazz Age.

Jacob Hookaylo "Winged Bridge" cufflink, circa 1925.

Based on the above, I believe that the Hookaylo firm created the cufflinks previously identified as work of the Winged Bridge Maker. In short, Jacob Hookaylo is the Winged Bridge Maker.

Of course any such attribution warrants several caveats. Identifying Jacob Hookaylo as the Winged Bridge Maker is, at this time, based on a single pair of signed cufflinks which strongly resembles a pair of cufflinks attributed to the Winged Bridge Maker. As other signed pairs come to light or if documentary evidence is found (for example Hookaylo trade catalogs, receipts, design patents, etc...) the attribution will be strengthened. Currently little is known about Jacob Hookaylo and the firm he founded. Given the beauty of the cufflinks, further research into the firm and its founder would be well worth the effort.

A second caveat regards the maker's mark. Jacob Hookaylo was not the only jewelry maker to employee a maker's mark with an "H" inside a parallelogram. Dorothy Rainwater's invaluable reference, American Jewelry Manufacturers, identifies two other jewelry maker's with similar marks - Haltom Industries of Ft. Worth, Texas and J&L Hartzberg of New York City. Haltom Industries was founded in 1948 and employed an "H" in a square diamond shape as its maker's maker. The dissimilarity of the maker's mark and the date of the firm's founding preclude it as the maker of the above enameled cufflink or as a candidate for the Winged Bridge Maker.

Winged Bridge cufflink, circa 1925

The second firm J&L Hartzberg is a more interesting. Dorothy Rainwater identifies John and Louis Hartzberg as "manufacturers of platinum jewelry" and trade references indicate that the firm was active during the 1920s. During this period in the United States the hand-crafting of platinum rings and other jewels for important diamonds and colored gemstones was based in New York City. I suspect that J&L Hartzberg participated in this trade. It seems unlikely that the firm was involved in the manufacture of cufflinks, although until the Hookaylo attribution is strengthened this always remains a possibility. As always there is more research to be done!

Earlier notes about the Winged Bridge Maker:
Antique Cufflinks: Mystery Makers
The "Winged Bridge" Maker
The "Winged Bridge" Maker - II

These and other fine cufflinks can be found in
the Antique Cufflink Gallery.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Recent Additions - Cufflinks and Stickpins

Recent additions to the Antique Cufflink Gallery include an Art Deco onyx dress set, luminous mother-of-pearl cufflinks from Carter, Howe, striking Art Deco cufflinks from Jacob Hookaylo, elegant Carrington cufflinks with richly engraved tops, and a brilliant pair of Art Deco pinstripes.

Carter, Gough onyx dress set. (J9217)

Black Tie  Art Deco dress set with black onyx centers surrounded by contrasting white gold borders engraved with concentric circles.  Created by Carter, Gough in 14kt white and yellow gold,  circa 1925.    Cost:  $1,875

Carter, Howe mother-of-pearl cufflinks. (J9205)

Wisdom and Victory  Creamy white mother-of-pearl centers surrounded by elegant gold borders that hint of stylized laurel wreathes.  The luminescent mother of pearl beautifully picks up the warm, yellow glow of the gold.  Crafted in 14kt gold, circa 1900.    Cost:  $785

Art Deco guilloche enamel cufflinks. (J9210)

Art Deco Enamel  Elegant Art Deco cufflinks with jazzy guilloche enamel centers surrounded by white gold borders of stylized palmettes and intricate geometric motifs.  Created by Jacob Hookaylo in 14kt gold,  circa 1925.    Cost:  $1,075

Carrington elegantly engraved cufflinks. (J7263)

Carrington Elegance  In the early 20th century Carrington & Co. was renowned for elegantly designed, impeccably crafted cufflinks.  This finely engraved pair is a wonderful example.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1920.    Cost:  $1,075

Jazzy Art Deco pinstripe cufflinks. (J9220)

Art Deco Pinstripes  Art Deco cufflinks with jazzy pinstripe centers, radiant "wave" corners and a repeated geometric motif that glitters like confetti falling from a ballroom ceiling.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1925.    Cost:  $785

In the Antique Stickpin Gallery recent additions include a devilish Pan set with a small diamond and fiery eyes and an elegant stickpin by Hans Brassler set with jade.

Pan with diamond stickpin. (J9065)

Pan  The god of wild places and shepherds watches with an impish grin and fiery red garnet eyes.  A sparkling small diamond sits atop this richly detailed stickpin.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1900.    Cost:  $425

Hans Brassler jade stickpin. (J9191)

Deco Jade  A luminous green jade hinting of early Art Deco is set beneath flowing Art Nouveau curves and Classical laurel wreath borders.  A wonderful example of the elegant, imaginative jewels created by Hans Brassler.  Crafted in 14kt gold, circa 1910.    Cost:  $785

These and other fine jewels can be found in
the Antique and Estate Jewelry Galleries

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Summer Greetings!

Victorian moss agate cuff button, circa 1900.

Vacation season is here! While acquiring new cufflinks for the gallery and following up with research into the history of cufflinks, I have found several days to enjoy the warmer water at the beach and head north to hike the mountains of New Hampshire. I hope everyone is enjoying an equally pleasant summer.

Soon I will be posting several recent additions to the gallery and at the end of the month unravel the mystery of the Winged Bridge maker.

Until then I leave you with the above late Victorian cuff button set with one of my favorite gemstones - moss agate. The swirling green inclusions of this elegant variety of quartz are inescapably reminiscent of the seaweed beds I see while swimming at the beach.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Recent Additions - Cufflinks and Stickpins

Recent additions to the Antique Cufflink Gallery include striking Victorian moss agate bean backs, a pair of Krementz roaring lions, Art Deco green and gold cufflinks from Larter & Sons and a mysterious Art Nouveau warrior princess from Link & Angell.

Victorian moss agate cufflinks. (J9212)

Moss Agate  Victorian moss agate cufflinks featuring a swirling tangle of green inclusions that brings to mind seaweed floating in filtered sunlight along the ocean floor.  Crafted in 10kt gold,  circa 1900.
Cost:  $765

Krementz roaring lion cufflinks. (J9174)

Roaring Lions  A roaring lion announces his authority among the windblown grasses of the savanna.  The lion is beautifully sculpted with a flowing golden mane and fierce, piercing eyes.  Crafted in 14kt gold, circa 1900. Cost:  $885

Larter 14kt yellow gold and green enamel cufflinks. (J9213)

Green and Gold   An elegant pair of gold cufflinks with green enamel accents.  The beautifully engraved centers teem with jazzy, undulating lines that create a rippling, wave-like pattern.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1920. Cost:  $785

Art Nouveau heroine cufflinks. (J9211)

Warrior-Princess  Art Nouveau jewelers often celebrated heroines from myth and history.  These cufflinks feature a warrior-princess with a resolute stare and flowing golden tresses.  Crafted in sterling and silver-gilt, circa 1900. Cost:  $385

In the Antique Stickpin Gallery recent additions include a striking Egyptian Revival stickpin set with a bright sapphire from the Art Deco period.

Egyptian Revival stickpin with sapphire. (J9206)

Deco Egypt  Alternating papyrus stalks and palmettes surround a brightly glowing sapphire.  A striking example of the Egyptian theme jewels of the Art Deco era.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1920.    Cost:  $465

These and other fine jewels can be found in
the Antique and Estate Jewelry Galleries

Monday, June 30, 2014

A Parade of Colorful Cufflinks

Summer is here! White clouds are floating across the blue sky, the garden is abloom with flowers, and brightly colored towels and umbrellas decorate the beach. What better way to celebrate the beginning of summer than with a parade of colorful cufflinks. And, since Independence Day is just around the corner, we will start the parade with some red, white and blue fireworks.

William Huger carnelian cufflinks.

Arresting, sultry red carnelians set in bright yellow gold. The striking contrast of the red carnelian and yellow gold settings reflects the bold colors and contrasts favored during the Art Deco era. Created by Wm. Huger & Co. in 14kt gold, circa 1925.

Sansbury & Nellis white chalcedony cufflinks.

Translucent, foggy white chalcedony (a fine grained variety of quartz) set in rose gold. The luminous chalcedonies brings to mind early morning fog burning off with the first rays of the sun. A nice example of the striking white jewels of the late Art Deco period. Crafted in 14kt rose gold, circa 1930.

George Street lapis lazuli cufflinks.

Regal blue lapis lazuli wedded with the warmth of antique gold. The interplay of the rich blue of the gemstones and warm yellow of the gold speaks of the elegance of the past. Created by George O. Street & Sons in 14kt gold, circa 1900.

Sansbury & Nellis bloodstone cufflinks.

Heliotrope, more commonly known as "bloodstone," is a beautiful gemstone with bright red spots set in dark green jasper. The finest examples have the mesmerizing appearance of fiery embers smoldering in a dark bed of ashes. These Art Deco cufflinks feature elongated oval heliotropes set in bright yellow gold. Crafted in 14kt gold, circa 1920.

Lapis lazuli and gold cufflinks.

During the Art Deco era the passion for bold, dramatic colors found ready expression in lapis lazuli. The rich blue of the lapis set in these cufflinks is accented with small bits of pyrite (fools gold) that shimmer and sparkle like golden confetti falling in the midnight sky. These elegant cufflinks capture the festive, raucous spirit of the Jazz Age. Crafted in 14kt gold, circa 1925.

Victorian moss agate sleeve buttons.

Victorian sleeve buttons with mesmerizing moss agates. The moss agates feature a swirling tangle of green inclusions that glow like seaweed floating in filtered sunlight above the ocean floor. The gemstones are set in gold frames with richly engraved leaves and scrolls. Crafted in 10kt gold, circa 1900.

Larter & Sons hawk's eye tuxedo set.

An elegant tuxedo set with hawk's eyes in yellow gold. Hawk's Eye is a striking variety of quartz with deep blue edges shading into a glowing, bluish-gray "cat's eye" across the middle. The shimmering cat's eye effect (or "chatoyancy") and color of the gemstones plays beautifully against the warm tones of the yellow gold. This dress set was created by Larter & Sons in 14kt gold, circa 1950.

These and other fine cufflinks can be found in
the Antique Cufflink Gallery.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Recent Additions - Cufflinks and Stickpins

Recent additions to the Antique Cufflink Gallery include an elegant pair of platinum and pearl cufflinks by Carrington and Tiger Eye spool cufflinks from Sansbury & Nellis.

Carrington pearl and platinum cufflinks. (J9160)

Platinum and Pearl  Luminous pearl and mother-of-pearl centers surrounded by wreathes of stylized laurel leaves.   Beautifully designed and impeccably crafted by Carrington & Co. in 14kt gold and platinum,  circa 1925.    Cost:  $925

Sansbury & Nellis Tiger Eye cufflinks crafted in 14kt gold. (J9207)

Tiger Eye  Striking spool cufflinks with beautiful Tiger Eyes set in yellow gold.  The domed Tiger Eye gemstones are brown accented with rich honey yellow "eyes."  Created by Sansbury & Nellis, circa 1920.    Cost:  $785

In the Antique Stickpin Gallery recent additions include a striking turquoise stickpin created by Hayden Wheeler and an inquisitive, diamond-seeking serpent from Carter, Howe.

Hayden Wheeler turquoise stickpin. (J9195)

Wheeler Turquoise  A striking turquoise floats like a small planet amid swirling curves.  This stickpin beautifully weds the flowing curves of Art Nouveau with the symmetry and Medieval themes favored by the Arts & Crafts movement.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1900.
Cost:  $425

Carter, Howe serpent and diamond stickpin. (J9209)

Wheeler Turquoise  A striking turquoise floats like a small planet amid swirling curves.  This stickpin beautifully weds the flowing curves of Art Nouveau with the symmetry and Medieval themes favored by the Arts & Crafts movement.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1900.
Cost:  $425

These and other fine jewels can be found in
the Antique and Estate Jewelry Galleries

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Carrington Cufflinks and Mr. Goldsplat, the Mysterious Jeweler

Carrington onyx and diamond cufflink, circa 1920.

Founded in 1900, Carrington & Co. created elegant gold and platinum cufflinks during the first half of the 20th century. In addition to fine cufflinks, the firm was renowned for elegant dress sets, vanity cases, lockets and other jewels. Carrington cufflinks and accessories were retailed by the finest jewelers of the day including Tiffany & Co. and Cartier.

Reverse of Carrington onyx and diamond cufflinks.

Although the fronts of antique cufflinks are what first attract us, a careful examination of the backs is rewarding in its own way. The backs often provide clues as to the maker and age of the cufflinks, as well as the quality of the craftsmanship and the purity of the materials. This note focusses on the maker's marks and precious metal indicia found on the cufflinks of Carrington & Co.

Maker's mark.

The Carrington maker’s mark was a squared, angular “C” surrounding "14" or "18" which indicates the purity of the gold. The maker's mark is most often found on the reverse of the cufflinks, although occasionally it is stamped on the side of the cross bar.

Although most Carrington cufflinks were created in 14kt gold, every so often you come across a pair that is crafted in 18kt gold. The 18kt pairs may have been special commissions created at the request of a client or retailer.

Shirt stud with "C14" mark.

In dress sets, the vest buttons were signed like the cufflinks with a squared "C" enclosing a gold purity mark. Shirts studs, because of their small size, were simply signed with a diminutive "C14" or "C18" along the shank.

Carrington platinum and gold cufflink, circa 1925.

Carrington worked with platinum as well as gold. The firm created beautiful mixed-metal cufflinks with striking platinum borders and richly engraved platinum tops over solid gold backs. The above example features platinum borders with etched mother-of-pearl centers. The backs and linkage are crafted in 14kt yellow gold.

In addition to the Carrington maker's mark, the gold and platinum cufflinks are stamped with "GOLD&PLAT." on the reverse. This mixed-metal mark is fairly small and at times can be obscured by wear. This occasionally leads to some confusion.

Carrington mixed-metal mark.

Every so often I receive an inquiry about a pair of cufflinks signed by a mysterious jewelry maker named "GOLDSPLAT". At other times I am asked about cufflinks signed with a "C" and "14" and marked "GOLD PLATED". Needless to say, the Goldsplat signature is a misreading of the gold and platinum mark and, to the best of my knowledge, Carrington & Co. never created gold plated cufflinks.

Carrington platinum cufflinks, circa 1920.

Last, but not least, are the all platinum cufflinks. One of the more desired rarities in the world of antique cufflinks are the beautifully engraved platinum cuff jewels created by Carrington & Co. in limited numbers during the 1920s. The above photograph illustrates a mesmerizing example.

Carrington platinum mark.

The Carrington solid platinum cufflinks are simply marked "PLATINUM". There are no squared "C"s or other marks indicating that the cufflinks were created by Carrington & Co. The cufflinks are attributed to Carrington based on the quality of the craftsmanship, the pattern of the engraving, and the design of the brackets and linkage. Like the 18kt gold cufflinks, the solid platinum cufflinks may have only been created as special commissions when requested by a client or retailer.

Carrington cufflinks in the Retro style, circa 1950.

For half a century Carrington & Co. created fine cufflinks and dress sets. During most of this period the Carrington maker's mark and precious metal marks remained unchanged. However, in the years following World War II the marks were modified. In this period, Carrington was creating cufflinks in a heavier, bolder style that in recent years has come to be known as "Retro". These glittering examples of mid-century modernism were signed with the amended mark.

Maker's Mark, circa 1950.

The new mark features an elongated, less boxy "C" with "14K" appended to the right. What prompted this change, perhaps to make the gold purity more explicit or to comply with a regulatory change, is unknown. The new mark appears to have been limited to cufflinks crafted in 14kt. I have not come across a pair of 18kt gold cufflinks similarly marked. The new mark appears to have been used from the mid 1940s until the firm's closure around 1950.

Keller maker's mark.

The later Carrington mark is sometimes confused with the similar mark of another cufflink maker, Charles Keller & Company. Charles Keller & Co. was a prolific maker of gold and platinum cufflinks from 1885 to about 1930. The Keller maker's mark, shown above, is a rounded "C" enclosing the gold purity followed by a "K". Here the "K" does double duty as the initial for both karat and Keller. At times Keller cufflinks have been misidentified as the work of Carrington. Because Keller cufflinks can be less valuable, it pays to know your marks.

Fine cufflinks from Carrington & Co. and other notable makers
can be found in the Antique Cufflink Gallery.