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How we classify antique goods so you know what your getting is what we have said they are? 

Classifying antique goods is not always an exact science.  However, there are various ways in which we can identify items.  In Great Britain we have a thorough and efficient system of hallmarking.  The hallmark not only guarantees that the goods are made of silver or gold, it also identifies the gold content and the town and date of assay.  Therefore if a description on a pair of cufflinks says: 

‘9 carat gold, Birmingham 1912’ 

..…you can be assured that the cufflink is hallmarked.  Other countries’ cufflinks may have a different mark and the classification of some of these is covered by European Union regulations.  These regulations are in the process of being formalized and there are many discrepancies and anomalies in the current guidelines, but generally speaking you can use the terms gold and silver about most pieces emanating from EU countries and also those made before 1920.  For non-EU, American and cufflinks which are post 1920, as an industry we are not supposed to use the term silver and gold unless they have a British import mark. 

Where antique American cufflinks show the appropriate marks, we do identify both 10 and 14 carat gold.
 Where items do not carry a hallmark or are not made from silver or gold, the date is determined by the style of the cufflink.  As styles changed dramatically between 1880 and 1940 it is fairly easy to determine the date to within 5-10 years.

Cufflink Descriptions & Terms


Dates & Styles of
Antique & Vintage Cufflinks

Victorian – (1837-1901)
Hand and machine engraved designs – often leaves, scrolls and flowers. 

Art Nouveau – (1890-1920)
Pretty, soft lines, cherubs, female figures, pastel coloured enamel and mother-of-pearl. 

Edwardian – (1901-1910)/
Belle Epoque
The period between 1895 and about 1915 – but generally the same type of styles. 

Art Deco – (1920-1945)
Linear and angular designs, geometric patterns, block colours and bright coloured enamels, use of black onyx.