Guide to Buying a Watch
The part watches play in our lives has changed drastically over the last few decades, in the digital age, watches are no longer the only timekeeper. However, the value of owning the perfect watch has not decreased, with design and style now being the reason we shop for watches, taking over from necessity and practicality.
Watches play different roles for different people but ultimately, one will usually never do. Learning the ins and outs of watches can be intimidating so its best to start with the basics so you know what to buy to suit your life and style.
Mechanical vs. Quartz
A movement is the part that runs the watch and the means by which it is powered. The different types of movements and their maintenance are something to be considered when choosing the right piece for you.
If you are a traditionalist and want a break from the digital world, then consider a Mechanical watch. Mechanical watches rely on wound mainsprings for power, and a much finer hairspring and balance wheel for timekeeping. They come with the ritual of needing to be wound every day, giving the wearer a direct connection with the past and a reminder of humankind’s ingenuity.
Quartz watches are a relatively modern development, they are battery operated and the regular vibrations of a tiny quartz crystal to help them to keep much more accurate time than mechanical watches. Quartz and even smart watches are perfect for those on the go as they are functional and practical. Keep in mind however, that quartz watches will need their battery replaced from time to time meaning you will need to take your watch to have a replacement fitted.
When it comes to the finishing of your watch, it does not only refer to the decorative elements but can go as deep as, for example, superior polishing of the mainspring, barrel and barrel cover. The further upscale you go will include finer finishing meaning a more efficient and accurate watch.
As an example, Patek Phillippe’s classic Calatrava (Ref 5196) is an iconic time piece, 18k yellow gold case and a diameter of 37mm. Self-winding with a chocolate brown alligator strap, the Calatrava’s 215 PS Movement consists of 130 tiny components with each one of these components hand polished and finished to the highest standard.
This requires hours of work and is all hidden behind a solid yellow gold case back. Hours of time and craft that adds so much value to your piece.
When it comes to watches, the choice can be overwhelming. Figuring out your budget can be a great way to narrow down your options. If you are just starting in the world of watches and want to start off with a smaller budget, say a few hundred euros, then most of what will determine the cost in this segment is how the watch looks on the outside.
For this we would suggest looking to Japan, and to Seiko. Seiko produces every major component to make a watch under its own roof, making perhaps the most comprehensive ‘manufacture’ in the world. The Seiko 5 Sport has a sleek and minimal stainless-steel finish and comes in several different dial colours. With a date-day function at 3 o’clock, water resistance of a 100 metres and scratch resistant hardlex glass makes it a perfect all-rounder.
Trendy vs Traditional
Although what’s trending shouldn’t make or break your decision which purchasing your timepiece, considering your personal style and lifestyle is essential when making your decision. If you do like to be on trend, colour ways to keep an eye on would be teals and greens. With nature inspired hues being seen across the board in fashion at the moment, take a look at TAG Heuer Aquaracer Professional 300 Date. With its diamond studded teal blue dial and bracelet inspired by the refreshing waters of lagoons and coral reefs. A beautiful piece for those who like to stay on trend and stand out.
If you are less concerned about fashion, and your intention for your watch is for it to be an accessory for more formal occasions as opposed to everyday wear, then think of something timeless and minimal that will go with everything. The OMEGA De Ville Prestige Collection has a large and loyal following due to its classic and elegant design. OMEGA De Ville Prestige Collection Co-Axial Chronometer features an impressive two-zone black dial with a stainless-steel case and black leather strap. Perfect for a lover of all things uncomplicated.
Try before you buy rings true for watches, spend the time visiting instore to be sure your desired watch is the right choice for you.