An Ode to Rivets
“She wants to meet me at the top of the Empire State Building. On Valentine's Day.” - Sleepless in Seattle
What do the Eiffel Tower, the Golden Gate Bridge, and the Empire State Building all have in common? For starters, these three iconic structures lace the love stories of countless couples around the world.
Paris at twilight evokes romance in any language. There are as many as 10,000 proposals at or around the base of the Eiffel Tower every year. The Golden Gate Bridge is the gateway of the West as ships from every port glide under its passageway, many carrying passengers seeking a new life - and love - in the Golden City.
If you’ve ever seen An Affair to Remember or Sleepless in Seattle, you know that iconic scene. A hope-filled lover nervously waits at the top of the Empire State Building for the one to arrive. Whether it’s Tom Hanks or Cary Grant, Meg Ryan or Deborah Kerr, a complete stranger or the one who’s captured your heart, you know the whimsical heights of love found at the top.
What these three iconic structures also have in common is their love of rivets. To this day, the top of the Empire State Building is where many couples say “Yes!” to their forever loves, a dream that would never have soared without the gift of rivets. There are over 100,000 rivets embedded in the skeletal steel of the Empire State Building. While the Art Deco facade is the true architectural style of the Empire State Building, deep inside its structure is the same love for rivets as the Romans, Persians, and Egyptians.
This is a love letter - an ode, as it were - to the rivet.
Search anywhere throughout modern architecture and you will find rivets. From the Empire State Building to the Eiffel Tower, the Golden Gate Bridge, ocean liners, skyscrapers, and everyday blue jeans, the rivet continues making its mark on history.
How can something so simple find its way into the hands of blue-collar craftsmen and a Savile Row couturieres with equal reverence? So much of our world today is possible because of the rivet. Wars were won because of rivets. Dictators were defeated because of rivets. Stars were born, legends were launched, skylines shaped, disasters averted, fortunes found, and love ignited - all because rivets did their part in this great play we call life.
What follows is a deep dive to the timeless design and impact of rivets in every area of industry, history, and likely your own memories. Raise a glass, open your eyes, and see the indelible impact of rivets that are still shaping much of the world’s future today.
Stay tuned for part two of our Ode to Rivets series...coming soon!