I undertook this blog after inspiration from a friend in San Francisco who told me about his and explained that though it was nothing Earth shattering or unique, it was a nice way to throw down some thoughts and share interests with anyone out in the world that might appreciate them.
Watch collecting is a growing phenomenon in the world with the proliferation of so many brands and so many models. One can keep things inexpensive and fun or high end and ridiculously expensive. Though previously the domain of men, there is a growing movement of watch savvy women collectors out there. Still, the vast majority of enthusiasts are men, as watches are one of the few accessories men can get away with without feeling too self conscious and express a little about who they “are” through their choice of timepieces.
After the advent of quartz watches in the 60s and the onslaught of cheap and accurate ones in the 70s, the Swiss mechanical watch industry was in danger of going the way of dinosaurs. Mechanical watches, though not the most accurate, are as strong as ever now since being created over 200 years ago. One man was credited for saving the Swiss watch industry: Nicolas Hayek (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/29/business/29hayek.html?_r=0).
With year after year of record sales and growth, the watch industry is riding the zenith of a big wave. This has been helped greatly in recent years by the growing wealth and disposable incomes from Asia and mainly China, specifically. More and more variety of designs, complications and exotic materials are on offer and these strategies ensure that interest won’t be lost and money continues to roll in.
It is the mechanical watches that command the most in interest and money, however. Old fashioned and not especially cutting edge, mechanical watches are constantly being tweaked by manufacturers with new materials such as silicon, ceramics, and newer man made discoveries to ensure watches run longer, are more efficient, are more accurate and require less maintenance and lubrication.
Mechanical watches offer an intangible value for the wearer: knowing what is on the wrist is a hand crafted, human assembled, moving piece of microscopic mechanical wonder that beats along as long as the wearer winds it or wears it regularly. It is like the heart in the human body that beats along versus the cold, efficient, battery powered quartz movement that ticks on whether one wears it or not.