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Cufflinks / Double-Sided on Chain

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by bch, Jan 9, 2005.

  1. bch

    bch Senior Member

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    I rec'd some cufflinks as a gift. They're double-sided on a chain. I have a heck of a time putting them in, especially in the morning before the first cup of coffee. Is there a trick to it? Is it something your hand eventually learns to do as second nature? Any tips that do not include asking my wife to do it for me? If it makes a difference, I wear custom shirts that have well-fitting cuffs. I suppose it might be easier if the cuffs were looser, but that's no option. Thanks in advance.
     


  2. Manton

    Manton RINO Dubiously Honored

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    Actually, well or close fitting cuffs work nicely with chain links, since the distance between the two sides is usually greater with chain links than with swivel links.  Ample cuffs and chain links don't go together well.  The cuff ends up too loose and sloppy looking.

    To some extent, the ease of putting on double-sided links depends on the stiffness of your cuffs, and the size of the buttonholes that the links go through.  Years ago, I bought what I thought were a beautiful pair of double-sided links.  I had, at that time, only two French cuff shirts.  Both had stiff cuffs with very small holes.  I could not put the damned things on no matter what I tried.  So I gave up.  Years later, I had a lot more shirts, with softer cuffs.  I was cleaning out some drawers and found those old links.  I tried them on my new shirts, and whadda ya know.  They worked.

    Anyway, I find what works for me is to put the shirt on, fold the cuff back, use the hand that the cuff is on to hold the cuff steady, then work the link in with the other hand, one fold at a time, starting with the outermost fold and working through to the innermost fold.  It took a little practice to get used to, but it is now second nature, and I do it almost every morning.
     


  3. cuffthis

    cuffthis Senior Member

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    Simple.

    Put one side in before you put the shirt on. Then put the other side on when you have the shirt on. I always put the outside one on first. I find it easier to put the inside one on when wearing the shirt.
     


  4. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Distinguished Member

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    Simpler: Have your shirtmaker make your sleeve length properly so that where your fastened cuffs sit on your hand is not the length determinant. Then, assuming the added length of the link's chain correctly allows sufficient space, you can put the links in completely before you put on the shirt. But that would require every component to be correctly made. [​IMG]
     


  5. Manton

    Manton RINO Dubiously Honored

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    I'm shocked, shocked to read this under your name, Alex. A fastened cuff big enough to pass a hand through?.? Isn't that shirtmaking heresy?
     


  6. ViroBono

    ViroBono Senior Member

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    If you don't want to put them in first (which is what I do), get your wife/girlfriend/boyfriend/valet to put them in for you.
     


  7. ernest

    ernest Distinguished Member

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    That's why I do not like these type of cufflinks.
     


  8. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Distinguished Member

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    Manton
    No, it happens to be each client's individual preference which guides here. Please note the aforesaid caveat, "assuming the added length of the link's chain correctly allows sufficient space". Not to get into another AAAC "body" discussion, but one should be able if properly exercising, to 'scrunch' ones hand sufficiently to pass through such a cuff & link combination. Remember, I make sleeve cuffs ... not handcuffs. P.S.: Now leave me alone. I'm trying to slog my way through some unknown aspiring young writer's manuscript about clothing. [​IMG]
     


  9. Manton

    Manton RINO Dubiously Honored

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    If it's a slog, then I have failed in some decisive respect. Good thing I already signed the contract.
     


  10. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Distinguished Member

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    No. It's kindalike drinking a cup of coffee ... while riding the Batman rollercoaster at Great Adventure. A slog it certainly isn't.
     


  11. bch

    bch Senior Member

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    I assume this is jest. Your sleeve would be so short it would disappear up your coat if you bend your arm. But, yeah, I can see it would solve the problem about getting the links in. And absent someone telling me to get a third arm, it's probably the best (easiest) suggestion. Thanks.
     


  12. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Distinguished Member

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    As most of you are aware, I frequently jest ... for without humor, what is life? However, when I speak of shirtmaking and use the word properly, I do not jest. What I said was the simple truth. A properly made shirt will NOT rise when you bend your arm. A full and complete discussion of which can be had by perusing the following links. http://www.askandyaboutclothes.com/F...?TOPIC_ID=3939 http://www.askandyaboutclothes.com/F...?TOPIC_ID=3837 A Treatise on the Art of Making Custom Shirts: http://customshirt1.com/StyleForum_AskAndy01.htm
     


  13. bch

    bch Senior Member

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    Thanks for the links (web, not cuff). Â Heady stuff. Anyway, I hope you didn't take offense to what I was saying. Â I think maybe I misread your first post? You recommended that I have shirts made "so that where your fastened cuffs sit on your hand is not the length determinant." Â This is the same thing as saying that the length of the sleeve should not be a function of where your cuffs sit. Â I took you to mean that the sleeve length should be determined simply by gravity, i.e. the sleeves fall to the proper length when my arms are at my side. Â This is typically why custom shirts have longer arms for a given person than an RTW shirt (or it's been my experience, anyway): Â the cuffs on the latter are so large, that a "proper" sleeve length would cause the cuff to swallow the hand. Â With RTW, we sacrifice proper length when are arms are bent or extended for proper length when our hands are at our sides. Therefore, given my (possibly incorrect) interpretation of your post, my sleeves would be too short when bending my arms. Even if I were to follow your advice (accounting for the length of the chain in the links in the design of my shirts), I'm not sure any given shirt made to your specs would work with any given pair of links. Â That would really be too much to think about before the morning's first cup.
     


  14. Manton

    Manton RINO Dubiously Honored

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    Since Alex first raised this point weeks ago, I have been most intrigued.  No other shirtmaker in the world even makes this claim, much less lives up to it.  For 15 years, I have believed that properly fitting shirts have sleeves that are slightly longer than your actual arms.  All the bespoke houses of Europe and America (except one, apparently.) make their shirts this way. The problem is, that excess length ("gather") tends to bunch up and wrinkle like hell. Oh well, part of the transaction costs of being well-dressed, or so I assumed.

    More than anything else, this claim of Alex's that he knows how to avoid this tempts me to give Alex's shirts a try.  Fingers crossed on that lottery ticket.
     


  15. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Distinguished Member

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    I don't know why all the mystery on this point. It is actually quite simple. Once we determine the correct sleeve length, I make a permanent mark on your arm just below the wrist using an indelible Sharpie pen. Then, each morning, you run a 1.5" bead of Krazy Glue along the mark, hold your shirt cuff in place, and voila. Sleeve may rip at the elbow from the tension, but who really cares. You don't see the elbow with your jacket on. All you see is the correct 1/2" of 'linen' showing.

    Naturally, I supply a special chemical called Krazy Glue De-Bonder for use at the end of the day. One bottle of KG, one of KGDB with each shirt. Also an assortment of Band-Aids in case you run out of De-Bonder.
     


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