It's always a red-letter day, when a pair of Belais cufflinks arrives, but these are particularly remarkable. Most Belais jewels are Art Deco, but these are earlier examples showing Arts and Crafts influence in their stylized "radiant sun" pattern, a motif characteristic of Edwardian jewelry. Most recently I saw it on a piece firmly dated to 1910.
As these fabulous cufflinks bear not only the Belais mark but that of HWK Company (and its Talon Grip trademark), they could be as early as 1905. That's when HWK was formed in Providence, RI, a major jewelry center then. They can't possibly date from later than the World War I era, since HWK had closed by the 1920s.
While the legendary Belais brothers, the gods of early white gold, created these four lavishly engraved faces, HWK did the rest of the work and their "talon" connectors are particularly beautiful -- centered by floral medallions and very curvy, in the Art Nouveau manner.
Measuring almost 3/4" by 1/2", these are larger than most Belais cufflinks. The oval sun at the top of each face is big enough to take a monogram. Reverses are signed WHITE GOLD FRONT BELAIS 14K HWKCO and TALON GRIP TRADE MARK. Provenance is a West Coast estate and condition is so fine that they can't have been worn much. Every bit of this gorgeous engraved design looks as crisp as on the day it was made.
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