The need to create and offer newer jewellery styles led to a reinterpretation of bangles and the subsequent evolution of cuffs. Also called cuff bracelets or wrist cuffs, these accessories derive their name from being worn around the wrist - the place where you would find shirt ‘cuffs’.
A cuff is nothing but a band of metal that almost forms a circle. We say ‘almost’ because the circle is not completed in the case of a cuff. There is a small gap to allow for adjustments - it can be made bigger or smaller depending on one’s wrist, making cuffs ‘one size fits all’.
Typically wider than bangles, cuffs often feature engravings or embellishments that cover their large surface area. They come in designs that range from traditional to modern such that they can be paired with both Indian and western outfits.
The most basic choice to make when it comes to cuffs is choosing between wide and sleeker cuffs. While the wide ones are made of a strip of metal, the sleek cuffs comprise of one or more thinner bands. Sleek cuffs present a delicate and elegant look while the wider ones exude a bohemian, kitschy or sometimes powerful appeal.
Sleek cuffs are best paired with feminine dresses, skirts or sarees for the understated elegance that they offer. Choose a style that is studded with semi-precious stones, pearls or precious stones and you’ll see how it seamlessly blends with a layered necklace and chandelier earrings. For a more subdued look, pick stones in pastel or lighter tones on silver or rose gold bands. If you want to go all bling, then go in for brilliant golden bands with bright coloured stones.
Wider cuffs are chunkier and can be made of materials ranging from leather, metal to wood. These cuffs can be embellished with stones, metal detailing, engravings or even beads. Sometimes, the cuffs by themselves are fashioned out of metal filigree work so delicate and exquisite that they do not need any other embellishments.
Whether wide or sleek, a popular trend when it comes to wearing cuffs is ‘stacking’ - multiple cuffs worn together for a boho-chic look. You can choose to co-ordinate the cuffs - wear all metal ones, or all red ones or pick two complementing colours and stack them one over another. If you want an unco-ordinated yet hip look, you can go all out and stack cuffs made of different materials. One thing to remember is that this stacking is not random ‘putting together’ of multiple cuffs. There is a method to the madness. It involves carefully choosing cuffs of different textures, colours and styles and putting together an appropriate assortment that complements your outfit. A stylish unco-ordinated stack often includes a leather cuff in a colour that is present in the outfit, a golden bracelet or cuff, a beaded bracelet with tassels and a plain metal cuff with spikes or stones. You can even put together a bright and colourful stack of cuffs comprising of beads, tassels and baubles to perk up any boring outfit.
Whether worn as is or in a stack, cuffs are interesting accessories that can work wonders on your outfit. A bright and vibrant cuff can add a dash of colour to your ensemble while a sleek cuff can give it a sophisticated charm. Make sure to pick out pieces that catch your eye while shopping online and you will most certainly be able to pair them with any outfit, given the versatile nature of cuffs. We’d encourage you to embrace cuffs with open arms for they are an easy and failsafe way to add some spice and a lot of character to your outfits.