The Cartier Love bracelet has as storied a design as it does a history. In its journey to transcend multiple generations as the trendiest piece of hardware, the bracelet has locked itself into mainstream culture while staying true to its exclusive namesake. The bracelet, which now retails from $1,210 to $56,500, has come a long way from its early days. Here are some facts we’ll bet you never knew about today’s most coveted – and giftable – bangle.
1. The bracelet’s design was inspired by a chastity belt. Aldo Cipullo designed the piece of jewelry in 1969 to symbolize everlasting love, and did this by introducing a two-piece cuff that can only be clasped and unlocked using a Cartier screwdriver. The screwdriver comes with the purchase of each LOVE bracelet and has even garnered its own trendy use as a charm for a necklace.
2. And Manhattan hospitals are rumored to carry that screwdriver. The bracelet has become so popular that hospitals in the New York City area allegedly keep the Cartier appliance handy, specifically for taking off the bracelet in emergencies.
3. The TSA is well aware of the trend. A former TSA agent for LAX told WhoWhatWear that Cartier LOVE Bracelets were “the biggest problem” in terms of metal accessories that people wear to fly. Her advice: “It might be wise to put your jewelry on after screening to avoid a pat-down.” Are Cartier screwdrivers TSA approved?
4. Iconic couples were the first to rock the iconic wristlets. When the bracelet first became available, Cartier presented them to famous couples including Sophia Loren and Carlo Ponti, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, and The Duke and Duchess of Windsor
5. Cartier used to have a policy against buying yourself a bracelet. If you were single, tough luck! The rule was you could only purchase a bracelet if it was for a loved one.
6. Every contemporary bangle comes with an engraved serial number. Due to plenty of counterfeit versions of the popular bracelet, newer models come with unique serial numbers engraved on each piece of jewelry.
7. The LOVE collection extends beyond bracelets. Today the line now features 33 variations of the yellow gold, white gold, rose gold and platinum bracelet, as well as earrings, necklaces and rings.