How to Build a Better Cufflink

At last week’s Grand Opening Party, we spoke with HollenWolff co-founders Kyle Stoehr and James Lohmiller and found out that they are planning a lighter-caliber take on their robust cufflinks (.55 versus the current .68). Just another sign that the duo won’t stop tweaking the French cuff fastener until every aspect has been explored.

Here are the five issues they initially set out to improve with their designs, in their words:

1. Strength — through the use of precision-turned surgical grade stainless steel components (versus pressed softer steel components), which in turn allowed us to use a more robust type of assembly.

2. Security From Loss — through the development of the “gravity-lock”, which requires the cufflink to be in a north/south orientation with the pushbutton upside down in order to unlock and separate.

3. Comfort — through the development of an adjustable-length mechanism that can lock in at two different settings, for example to accommodate a larger watch on one cuff while remaining tighter on the other.

4. Ease of Installation — meaning that on our self-retaining designs you can install the cufflinks prior to putting on your shirt, and on the adjustable-length versions through the geometry of the male cufflink half which greatly aids in one-handed installation.

5. Reintroduce the Other Half — Prior to World War II, all cufflinks were double-sided. The advent of flip-closure, which made cufflinks cheaper and easier to install at the time changed that. We wanted to bring them back.

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David is Wingtip's storyteller. In addition to editing the Modern Gentleman's Blog, he has written for Wax Poetics, The Source, SF Weekly, and the East Bay Express, and others. His inspirations include Rumble Fish, Paul's Boutique, and Balzac. He studied English at the City University of New York at Hunter College and journalism at the University of Southern California. He lives in Berzerkeley with his wife and daughter.

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