Monday, November 17, 2014

Antique Cuff Links For Elegance and Style

What creates more style and elegance  for a man than a beautiful pair of antique cuff links. Cuff links make a wonderful fashion statement for a black tie event or a quiet college affair.  When it come to looking good, cuff links add that little extra special touch.

Cuff links come in a wide variety of styles and metals but one of the most distinguishing characteristics  of antique cuff links is the clasp.  Here is a brief overview of the different cuff link clasps.

Toggle bar cuff links
The toggle bar cuff link is a toggle mechanism that can rotate vertically between two bars. The toggle is moved vertically to fit through both cuff holes. Once through the toggle bar is moved to the horizontal position to  secure the cuffs  in place.  This design became popular in the 1940's and is still popular today.

Vintage Cuff Links, Gold with Diamond Handcrafted

vintage men's cuff links and tie clip

Vintage Cuff Links, Silver and Mother of Pearl, Handcrafted

Snap link cuff links
The snap link cuff links consists of two piece that come apart in the middle, push together and pull apart.  Manufacture of this type of cuff link started in about 1910-1918 by companies like Kum-A-Part, Snap-Link and Bear and Wild and  were popular in the 1920's and 1930's.  They were machine made of base metal with gold or silver and mother of pearl embellishments.  They were convenient to wear  but the snap mechanism sometimes failed causing the cuff links to come apart unexpectedly.

Antique Snap Link Mother of Pearl and silver Cuff Links Antique Snap Link Mother of Pearl, Silver and Gold Cuff Links

Double Panel cuff links
Double panel cuff links consist of a chain or a bar or a bridge connecting two identical decorated shapes together.  French makers,  Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, Hermes and Boucheron preferred this style because the cuff links appear of hug or grip the sleeve.

Single Panel cuff links
Single panel cuff links are just like double paneled cuff links except only one side of the identical shapes are decorated.  With single panel cuff links the undecorated side must be worn on the cuff facing inward against the body. 

Swivel Bar and Pivot cuff links
The swivel bar cuff links have just one decorated panel on each cuff link and a movable bar on the back.  The bar is lined up with the cuff holes and then is swiveled horizontally to hold the cuff in place.  The pivot cuff link has one side that is immobile and a connecting bar that is able to pivot.

Ball or Oval back cuff links
Ball and oval backed cuff link have a  immobile closure mechanism shaped like a ball  or an egg attached to a rod.

Show off your own personal style and elegance with antique cuff links during the holidays and other special occasions.

Monday, November 3, 2014

The Corning Glass Museum Experience

     I first visited the Corning Glass Museum in the early 1970's.  My mother had heard the museum  had a large collection of early American pattern glass and she wanted to see it.  Back then it was a small museum with one long wall of floor to ceiling glass panels.  Inside the small space, there were rows and rows of glass cabinets filled with pattern glass.  The lower level was occupied by the Steuben Glass Studio and museum. In 2014, I took my daughter to see the museum and it has changed a lot since that first visit. Now, it is a very large museum with a world renowned fabulous glass collection.
     The Corning Museum of Glass was a gift to the people of American to commemorated the one hundredth anniversary of the Corning Glass Works and was designed to tell the story of glass.  That was in 1951 and by 1978 the museum had out grown its space.  A new addition was designed with a library and galleries and the new museum opened to the public in 1980. By 1990, the museum was again out of space and a 65 million expansion project was undertaken to increase the efficiency of visitor flow and to expand gallery space.  And the museum just continues to expand.  No sooner was an expansion project completed another  project was started.  Now under construction is the North Wing Expansion scheduled to be completed soon.
     Today the Corning Museum of Glass tells the story of 35 centuries of glass from around the world. It also contains specialized galleries like the Frederick Carder Gallery, a gifted designer who oversaw the Steuben Glass Works.  Tiffany, Galle, Loetz, Daum Nancy, Lalique and many many other outstanding glass manufacturers are also featured. Your senses are overwhelmed as your eyes moves from one outstanding piece of glass to the next.

 The Contemporary Gallery features stunning works from artists from around the world. 

There is a special exhibit gallery that was featuring breathtaking pieces from the artist Rene Lalique when we visited this fall, including design drawings and a video showing glass production in his studio in the 1930's.

The Innovation Center is a big display area featuring many interesting facts and hands on activities concerning glass.

The Glass Market is massive and fills the entire first floor of the museum.  It is a feast for the eyes where you can purchase almost anything your hearts desires that is made of glass.

If you love beautiful glass you will love the Corning Glass Museum.

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