Magnificent Bastard

Monday, September 22, 2014

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cufflinks

Ask the MB: Novelty Cufflinks

Ask the MB: Novelty Cufflinks

Q: Hi, MB! What do you think of novelty cufflinks?

Your fan,

Deb

A: We're not unconditionally opposed to novelty cufflinks. But we are somewhat baffled by the current state of the market. The last time we posted about this — in 2007 — we advised a reader to steer clear of skulls. Seven years later, that prohibition still stands. And from what we can see, you are going to have to do an awful lot of steering — the cufflinks sections on the websites of most major retailers look like the Crypt of the Sepulchral Lamp remixed by Hot Topic. (Seriously, when did skulls start accessorizing so heavily?)

Skulls with crowns
Skulls with ballcaps
Skulls with sunglasses
Skulls with bow ties
Skulls w/ headphones
Skulls with blackface
Skulls with mustaches
Skulls with mohawks

Has the Day of the Dead introduced a more formal dress code? While we understand that cufflinks offer a man a chance to signal his sense of style in a understated over-the-top way, and even encourage that, we're a little alarmed by this massive proliferation of skulls. A cufflink is not as permanent as a tattoo, but that shouldn't give you license to turn your sleeve into a black metal album cover from 1993.

Our advice: Stick with novelty cufflinks that allude to an interest in MB-approved pastimes like golf, tennis, sailing, skiing, or eating lobster. And even with those we have some caveats:

MB-Approved Novelty Cufflink Novelty Cufflink Caveat

Golf-related

Must have a USGA handicap index of 5.0 or lower.


Tennis-related

Must have a USTA rating of 5.0 or higher.


Skiing-related

Must have a ski level of 8 or higher.


Sailboat-related

Must own one of at least 28 feet.


Lobster-related

You're hungry, but you don't eat like a toolbag.


Ask the MB

Skulls from Mark Shale; Bacon and Eggs from Barney's
Skulls from Mark Shale; Bacon and Eggs from Barney's
Q: Assuming french cuffs are ok in your book, what kind of cuff links would you recommend? And which online store would be a good place to buy them?
—Prakash


A: French cuffs are way OK, primarily because an MB can discreetly strut his sartorial stuff and personality with the right pair of cufflinks. What kind, you ask? This is a little like asking what kind of woman you should marry. Though we can safely rule out skulls and anything logoed, like you'd probably rule out any psycho chick or a geezer with 3 kids.

Thanks for asking about where to shop online, because that's about all we do. Always check bluefly first for a bargain. If you're feeling flush and bold, don't miss Barney's. If you're still not finding your match, save your pennies and try these:

* Bergdorf Goodman
* Neiman Marcus
* Saks

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