Edgy, industrial style handmade metal accessories including belt buckles, key chains, jewelry and home decor by metal artist Jon (WATTO) Watson.
Monday, October 18, 2010
History of the Belt Buckle
• Belt Buckles date back to the 2nd & 3rd century where the Xiongnu, semi nomadic Chinese people, wore extravagantly decorated buckles over their tunics. This showed a mark of status. Not dissimilar to the reasons consumers wear designer labeled accessories today.
• Germanic invaders introduced animal
and combat motifs on their buckles.
• During the 7th century the designs focused more on gold interlacing patterns.
• Around the 1600s, the British Maritime sailors were faced with brutal weather. Their clothes became waterlogged and the current eyelet and string lacings did not hold up in the harsh weather. Thus, the belt buckle was brought back into existence.
• During the Puritan times, the button had been developed, but not yet perfected. The Puritans saw the button as sinful and so promoted the popularity of the belt and buckle.
• Before the 1920’s the buckle was worn mainly by men in the military as decorative wear, but as waistlines were lowered in the 20’s they were worn by the everday man as a functional item to hold their pants up.
The Cowboys actually wore buckles they found from the military. It wasn’t until the Western films were made that the stylists at that time felt a more decorative buckle was needed to spruce up the cowboy’s appearance and hence the Western buckle was born and is still popular today.
• Recent popularity in belt buckles was brought on by customization, gadgets and electronic devices that have been developed as well as the fashion influences of rock stars and celebrities. The rap and Hip-hop crowd is a huge influence in the belt buckle industry expecially “Iced out” or “blinged out” versions in which the buckle is adorned by gems and rhinestones.
All buckle images are designs of WATTO Distinctive Metal Wear.