Manner Monday®: Cuff Links

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by Carey Sue Vega in Business Etiquette, Etiquette, Manner Monday

We recently had pins made for our Student Ambassadors; lapel pins for the gentlemen, and pins with sparkly crystals for the ladies.  When the samples arrived, the company also sent cuff link examples.  I loved the cuff links, but personally thought our young men would not be interested.  Boy was I wrong!  Most of the gentlemen insisted they would were the cuff links, even to the point of saying they would purchase them themselves.  Then one of them asked, ‘what’s the purpose of cuff links, when you can just use the buttons that came with the shirt instead?’  So you know what I told them… that’s a great question, and it makes a great topic for Manner Monday – so here it is.

We can thank the French for the invention.  Prior to the 16th century and the reign of Louis XIV, men wore ruffled wristbands that were fitted with ‘cuff strings’. But of course simple strings were not enough for Louis XIV; he preferred using diamond buttons in lieu of the strings.  One of his coats featured 125 diamond buttons – I guess he was going for something simple (I’m kidding!).  For those who didn’t have access to diamonds, they would use glass buttons to replicate the look.

In the 19th century, cuff links were the norm, and by the Victorian period, both cuff links and shirt studs became essential parts of a gentleman’s wardrobe.

If you’re looking to add cuff links to your wardrobe, you have many options.  One of the most basic and popular styles today is the silk knot, which is two small knots, woven together with a connecting thread.  Or maybe you’re in the market for something other than silk, you can search eBay and other vintage websites to find some real treasures that are reasonably priced.  You might even ask a grandparent or other family member if they have a pair, there’s a pretty good chance they have something tucked away that they would be happy to pass along.

Alternate Use
I remember reading an article on napkin rings awhile back that offered up a really fun and unique repurpose idea for cuff links.  When hosting a dinner part, use vintage cuff links as napkin rings (pairing with ribbon or material), to identify partners. Then each couple will take their cuff links home as a party favor at the end of the evening.

Conversation Starters
Cufflinks can end up being great conversation starters.  When you see someone wearing them, use it as a fantastic way to break the ice.  There is a pretty good chance they’ll have a story to go with their cuff links to get the conversation started.



Special Announcements:

Have you seen the Music Video?  Our Student Ambassadors came up with the idea, wrote the lyrics, arranged for the soundtrack recording, I helped arrange the videographer… they did the rest all themselves!  Pretty creative bunch of kids!!!

Don’t forget to watch through to the end for the bloopers!

Click on the picture below to access the video.


Don’t miss out – Business Etiquette Lunch Workshops 
Lunch workshops are a great way to grab a fantastic meal, meet new people in an fun and nonthreatening environment AND learn something at the same time!

Join us for a workshop:

  • Tuesday, September 23, Skirvin
  • Tuesday, October 21, Quail Creek
  • Tuesday, November 18, Gaillardia (Social Etiquette – preparing for the Holidays)

Register via:


Business Etiquette Training and other Workshops
Would you like to schedule a workshop or presentation?

I have a variety of workshops that can be customized to fit your needs and would love to work with your organization, please call or email for more information, 405-721-1467 or

Here are just a few of the workshop topics:

  • Etiquette and the Generations – understanding ‘those guys’
  • Creating a Great Customer Service Experience
  • Business Etiquette and Professionalism – Navigating Lunch and Networking Events
  • First and Lasting Impressions
  • Professional Dress


9-12th Grade Levels:  Registration is open and will continue with the Early Bird discount into the fall.  Register early to avoid the waiting list.

  • 9-12th Grade registration online via:


As always, thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue


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