Each Christmas, it can always be a tough task coming up with new innovative gift ideas for your partner or male family members. No matter how many socks, ties and tech you get them, each year you might yearn for something truly special and unique, an item that will make them gasp the minute they rip open your finely-wrapped present, a piece that they will love for the years to come. So why not get them a piece that will last, a piece of jewellery.
Although historically jewellery has played a greater role in women’s fashion and accessories, throughout recent decades men’s jewellery has started to take centre stage, with an influx of men’s jewellery designers, and retailers offering both men’s and unisex pieces. Men also have started to redefine how a man ‘should’ look and dress, and in turn, accessorising themselves with jewellery, a hallmark of differentiation, sartorial elegance and proving that Diamonds are not just a girl’s best friend!
In fact, we have written another amazing blog on the short history of men’s jewellery, feel free to have a read here!
So, if you are searching for ‘christmas gifts for men’, ‘christmas gifts for boyfriend’ or ‘christmas gifts for dad’, or just broadly ‘men’s jewellery’ here at Lillicoco.com, we stock some amazing antique pieces that ooze historic charm and masculine prowess. Read on to see our picks.
Associated with being strictly gentleman’s jewellery throughout history, cufflinks were created to help fasten together men’s shirt cuffs. Although it is believed that the first evidence of cufflinks being worn were in the 1600s, it was not until the beginning of the 19th century that they became a staple in a man’s wardrobe!
Cufflinks were created at the same time that men’s shirts were studier and starched, which meant that they were too stiff to be fastened by a singular button. Many of the cufflinks that were commissioned during the 19th century would have floral motifs, birthstones, and symbols that were related to the hobbies and pursuits of the wearer. Brightly coloured opulent pieces were often worn by the wealthiest and most confident of gentlemen.
It was during this time that more and more men started to wear jewellery, popularised by monarchs and other esteemed figures. Even though today shirts can be secured by buttons, a pair of smart cufflinks are a great gift for Christmas, graduations and notable birthdays.
Below are our favourite cufflinks we currently have on our site!
Although women’s jewellery has a far more vibrant history than mens, this is not the case for rings. Rings have adorned men of status and wealth for thousands of years, notably on the fingers of famous Tudor portraits like Henry VIII and also Renaissance Popes. Rings here were large, ornate and glittering, used as signifiers of their extraordinary affluence but also they were used as talismans to ward off evil spirits.
Portrait of King Henry VIII, circa 1520, Source © National Portrait Gallery, London.
The most significant historic ring that is associated with men is the signet ring. Signet rings have been worn since Ancient Mesopotamia emblazoned with family crests, immensely popular among ancient civilisations, the Middle Ages, and till the 19th century! Often, these rings would be dipped in wax to sign a document and had symbols, initials and latin inscriptions to denote a person’s identity. Even today, you can find many signet rings on the high street, although these are now created for purely aesthetic purposes rather than a symbol of power and wealth.
We have many rings on our site that can be worn by young and older men today, plus, these rings can be resized on request!
Although lustrous and heavily decadent pendants are often a hallmark for women’s jewellery, pendants have been worn by men too throughout history. Don’t be bound by convention thinking that as men did not always wear pendants, therefore your loved one shouldn’t. Today, pendants in men’s jewellery is more commonplace than ever!
Below are our favourite pendants that we think a man in your life would love!
Stick pins and Brooches
Not commonly worn by men until the 19th century, stick pins and brooches were created to adorn a man’s formal jacket, waistcoat and ties! A traditional form of jewellery, today we often see these in the form of military dress or for more formal occasions like weddings, christenings and funerals. If your loved one wants something special to covet on special occasions, then one of these stick pins or brooches could be perfect!
Similarly to pendants, necklaces weren’t especially commonplace when worn by men in history, yet this does not mean that it didn’t occur altogether!
We have a range of minimalist antique chains on our site or alternatively, you could buy your beloved an Albert chain! Albert chains became popular during the Victorian era as they were worn by Prince Albert, meaning that many young men wanted to copy his style.
Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Vernan Heath, Bromide Postcard Print (1861) Source © National Portrait Gallery, London.
Albert chains were used to give men easier access to pocket watches, which were often tucked into their waistcoat or jacket. These chains can be seen in many a period drama today, including notably in Peaky Blinders, an immensely popular television show with both men and women.
Here at Lillicoco.com, we have converted these original Victorian and Edwardian Albert chains into necklaces, a fitting gift for a loved one who wants to look like Tommy Shelby.
Be sure to browse the rest of our website to see if any more of our magnificent pieces will take your fancy. If you have any enquiries about these items, please do contact us at email@example.com!