Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Art Deco - Cufflink Complications

Frank Krementz Art Deco cufflinks, circa 1925.

Art Deco - Cufflink

Among collectors of fine timepieces, watches with intricate mechanisms and a plethora of features are known as "complications." The term is also aptly applied to a group of richly detailed cufflinks created during the Art Deco era of the 1920s and 1930s.

Frank Krementz cufflinks, circa 1925.

One school of Art Deco design fervently believed that no visible surface should be left unadorned. The more decoration and embellishment, the better. Applying this design dictum to the small area of a cufflink resulted in mesmerizing cuff jewels.

A master of this style was the cufflink maker Frank Krementz. The firm was adept at combining intricate geometric patterns with stylized floral elements to create striking cufflinks with an incredible, almost obsessive, level of detail. The two cufflinks pictured above are beautiful examples.

L. Fritschze labyrinthine cufflinks, circa 1925.

A contemporary, but less prolific, cufflink maker was L. Fritschze and Company. Based in Newark, New Jersey (as were Krementz and Ziething), the firm specialized in cufflinks with dramatic geometric patterns. One's eye (and imagination) is inescapably drawn into the intricate, labyrinth-like designs. The cufflink pictured above is a striking example.

I have to confess a particular fondness for the Fritschze cufflinks. A fondness that only increases with their relative rarity.

Fritschze marquise and diamond cufflinks, circa 1925.

Art Deco "complications" were usually crafted in white gold or a combination of white over yellow gold. Commercially introduced around 1918, white gold is relatively hard compared to platinum and silver and crisply holds detailed, engraved designs. White gold also tarnishes slightly over time, throwing the intricately engraved patterns into high relief.

Ziething octagonal bull's eye cufflinks, circa 1925.

No discussion of intricate Jazz Age cufflinks would be complete without a few sparkling examples from Ziething & Company. The shimmering, abstract designs adorning Ziething cufflinks were created with a technique reminiscent of bright-cut engraving. As a result, the lively, sparkling designs appear to radiate and dance as they catch the light.

Jazzy Ziething cufflinks, circa 1925.

Some of Ziething & Company's finest work are striking two-tone cufflinks. In these the brightness of richly engraved white gold borders contrasts with the warmth of equally intricate yellow gold centers. Pictured above are two beautiful examples.

A final example of the intricate cufflinks of the Art Deco era. Crafted in white gold these cufflinks feature dramatic floral and cruciform centers above a field of concentric circles. The canted-corners are embellished with acanthus leaves (or possibly flaming scrolls) with elongated Greek key designs along the edges in between. One side is set with a small diamond. An awful lot of decoration for a very small piece of real estate!

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

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

New Additions to Antique Cufflink Gallery

Kohn & Company Art Deco cufflinks, circa 1930.

For timely updates when new pairs of cufflinks are added to the Antique Cufflink Gallery, please visit our new Facebook and/or Twitter pages. Photographs and links will be posted as new cufflinks are added.

Similar photographs and links will also be posted for new additions to the Antique and Estate Jewelry Gallery.

I hope everyone enjoys a festive and peaceful Thanksgiving!

Art Anderson

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Recent Additions

Antique Cufflinks

Recent additions to the Antique Cufflink Gallery include beautiful scrolling Art Nouveau cufflinks, a striking engraved mother-of-pearl dress set by Carrington, frosty white gold Art Deco cufflinks and an Art Deco pair with sapphires.

Carrington engraved mother-of-pearl dress set. (J9096)

Carrington Fireworks  A Carrington full dress set with engraved mother-of-pearl centers reminiscent of exploding fireworks surrounded by swirling scroll borders.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1925.

Link & Angell Art Nouveau swirl cufflinks. (J8600)

Voluptuous Swirls  A tangle of voluptuous scrolls enlivens these striking Art Nouveau cufflinks.  They feature the tight, twisting swirls favored in American Art Nouveau jewelry design.  Crafted in 14kt gold, circa 1900.

Kohn sapphire cufflinks. (J9093)

Sapphires and Stars  Art Deco cufflinks with dramatic compass rose centers set with small blue sapphires surrounded by angular Greek key borders.  Crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1930.

Frank Krementz intricately engraved Art Deco cufflinks. (J8719)

Art Deco Elegance  Beautiful Art Deco cufflinks with flowing scroll borders and dramatically engraved bull's eye centers.  Created by Frank Krementz Company in 14kt gold, circa 1925.

Link & Angell Art Nouveau wave cufflinks. (J8681)

Art Nouveau Waves  Dramatic scrolls flow along the edges of these cufflinks like frothy, crashing waves.  A nice example of Art Nouveau design.  Created by Link & Angell in 14kt gold, circa 1900.

Estate Jewelry

Additions to the Antique and Estate Jewelry Gallery include a beautiful Art Nouveau brooch by Krementz, dramatic irises, sinuous grape vines and a Victorian amethyst and diamond stickpin.

Krementz Art Nouveau brooch of serene woman and clover. (J9090)

The Dream  A woman serenely dreaming amid four-leaf clovers.  The clovers are set with sparkling dew drop-like diamonds.  Created by Krementz & Company in 14kt gold, circa 1900.

Ostby & Barton grape leaf brooch. (J9077)

Grapes and Pearls  Beautifully detailed grape leaves and a cluster of fresh water pearls cascade across the oval frame of this Victorian brooch.  Created 10kt gold, circa 1890.

Art Nouveau iris brooch. (J9091)

Bouquet of Irises  A bouquet of golden irises flourishes amid an Art Nouveau tangle of curvaceous stems and foliage.  Crafted in 14kt gold, circa 1900.

Victorian amethyst and diamond stickpin. (J9086)

Amethyst and Diamond  A regal purple amethyst is accented with fresh water pearls and a sparkling diamond..  The gems are set in a flowing Victorian twig-and-vine setting crafted in 14kt gold,  circa 1890.

The above cufflinks, stickpins and other fine jewels from the past,
can be found in the Antique Cufflink Gallery
and the Estate Jewelry Gallery