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Watch gift for wife -- advice needed

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone,

My wife's 30th birthday is coming up and I would like to buy her a nice watch.

My budget is $2000, which limits me as far as higher-end timepieces go, so I am willing to buy a used model if it is good condition (Timezone, etc.). I am thinking of something a little chunky (so she enjoys it now), but timeless and not too trendy (so she enjoys it in 20 years).

I have narrowed it down to the following for now:

- Rolex Air King (used Datejusts seem to be out of my price range)
- Omega Aqua Terra (36mm)
- Cartier tank (overpriced for a quartz watch) or Roadster (probably out of my price range)
- David Yurman Thoroughbred (lacks the watchmaking reputation of the other brands, but know she likes this)

I know there is good value in the German brands (Sinn, Stowa, Nomos, etc.), and I have a Sinn 356 myself, but I don't think any of their models are appropriate for a woman.

Does anyone have any thoughts or suggestions? I would appreciate your feedback.

Thanks
post #2 of 33

I ended up buying my wife a Cartier Tank Demoiselle. I tried SEVERAL times to steer her toward an automatic or manual wind movement, but that's the one she wanted, and she loves it. Did I overpay for a quartz movement? Probably, but from what I've come to understand ladies tend not want to be bothered setting a watch and don't see value in paying a premium for "watchmaking" (though of course there are exceptions). The bottom line, as with everything else, the rules are different for ladies and I just had to accept it.

 

I would probably lean toward the Cartier because it will endure. The Tank is an excellent choice with a wonderful history too. It was the watch of Jackie O, Michele Obama and reflects a timeless, elegant style. The other choices seem stylistically different--does she want dress or sport? If you want a chunky watch for now, just get a Michele or a Michael Kors for the time being. When the fad wanes, you'll be out 200 bucks rather than 2000.

 

Just my two cents.

post #3 of 33
Thread Starter 
Thank you Cylon.

I suppose it would be an all-purpose watch, but moreso one the causal side as she is in jeans far more often than a dress, but I do think a Cartier tank would suit most if not all purposes. I guess I have to tell myself that I'm buying the watch her and not myself (in which case an auto movement would be a must)!
post #4 of 33
While I stay away from used watches in my own collection (don't want someone else' old one) I think they make for a particularly crappy gift unless it's true vintage for a real collector. Personally, I think the idea of opening up the box only to see you were given someone else' old watch would be kind of a letdown.

A quartz Aqua Terra is a good choice but know that any of the 36mm ones are old and have been sitting for a while; they went to 38.5 a few years ago. It matters less on the quartz versions but the automatic received a brand new movement at that time, too.

My favorite, which can probably be had in your price range brand new from an AD, is the women's version of the Speedmaster. It's very current given trends in watches but it's also one of the most classic designs around.

I also think Baume & Mercier would be a great place to start. Their pieces are fairly substantial but the lines are such that they'd look right on a woman's wrist
post #5 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cylon View Post

I ended up buying my wife a Cartier Tank Demoiselle. I tried SEVERAL times to steer her toward an automatic or manual wind movement, but that's the one she wanted, and she loves it. Did I overpay for a quartz movement? Probably, but from what I've come to understand ladies tend not want to be bothered setting a watch and don't see value in paying a premium for "watchmaking" (though of course there are exceptions). The bottom line, as with everything else, the rules are different for ladies and I just had to accept it.
....

Sadly; +1.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TimelesStyle View Post

While I stay away from used watches in my own collection (don't want someone else' old one) I think they make for a particularly crappy gift unless it's true vintage for a real collector. Personally, I think the idea of opening up the box only to see you were given someone else' old watch would be kind of a letdown.
...

facepalm.gif
post #6 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by JN41 View Post

Hello everyone,
My wife's 30th birthday is coming up and I would like to buy her a nice watch.
My budget is $2000, which limits me as far as higher-end timepieces go, so I am willing to buy a used model if it is good condition (Timezone, etc.). I am thinking of something a little chunky (so she enjoys it now), but timeless and not too trendy (so she enjoys it in 20 years).
I have narrowed it down to the following for now:
- Rolex Air King (used Datejusts seem to be out of my price range)
- Omega Aqua Terra (36mm)
- Cartier tank (overpriced for a quartz watch) or Roadster (probably out of my price range)
- David Yurman Thoroughbred (lacks the watchmaking reputation of the other brands, but know she likes this)
I know there is good value in the German brands (Sinn, Stowa, Nomos, etc.), and I have a Sinn 356 myself, but I don't think any of their models are appropriate for a woman.
Does anyone have any thoughts or suggestions? I would appreciate your feedback.
Thanks

Buying a watch for your wife can be tricky unless you know exactly what she wants. I decided to buy my wife what I thought would
be a great watch. A Cartier tank. It was beautiful and when I presented it to her, she "beamed" with joy. What a fine actress she is.

She wore it to dinner one time and it ended up in the drawer. Finally, I asked what was wrong. She didn't want to hurt my feelings.
She does not wear anything gold. Oh well, I sold it gave her the money. We had a good laugh about it.
post #7 of 33

Correction: I bought my wife a Santos Demoiselle--not a Tank. Sorry for the confusion.

 

You can get a pre-loved one for $2159, and I don't share the previous posters aversion to such a thing. A new watch may be appropriate for certain events (50th anniversary maybe?) but a birthday is not on the same level. You know your wife better though so its really up to you.

post #8 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by amemovox View Post


Buying a watch for your wife can be tricky unless you know exactly what she wants.


Also true. You may want to avoid the watch altogether and get a bunch of jewelery or just go and let her pick something out.

post #9 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cylon View Post

Correction: I bought my wife a Santos Demoiselle--not a Tank. Sorry for the confusion.

You can get a pre-loved one for $2159, and I don't share the previous posters aversion to such a thing. A new watch may be appropriate for certain events (50th anniversary maybe?) but a birthday is not on the same level. You know your wife better though so its really up to you.

To each his own; I just know I'd never buy used and wouldn't particularly enjoy wearing one given to me that wasn't either vintage or sentimental (my dress watches were all passed down to me by my grandfathers) because I don't want someone else' old stuff. Therefore I wouldn't buy that as a gift for someone else because it's not something I feel good about giving as a gift. However I realize that others feel differently.
post #10 of 33
pick a few, give her pictures and tell her to choose the one she wants, then make the order. maybe a little less romantic but more practical
post #11 of 33
Since you don't seem averse to lesser known brands such as Sinn, you might also consider Oris. The BC Original Pointer Date is not too dressy, has classic styling and comes in three sizes The middle sized 36mm is probably not too large for a lady.
http://www.oris.ch/collections/collections_detail.aspx?ln=en&modelid=65
You can then use the remaining cash in your budget to pick up a Hermes scarf for her as a bonus.
post #12 of 33
Have a look at Chrono24.com. I did a quick search for ladies' watches priced between $1900 and $2100 and there are about 300 with lots of vairety from TAG, Rolex, Chopard, Hublot, Brietling, Cartier etc. You can narrow the search to specify the case material, strap material, new or pre-owned, diamond or not. You can also specify CONUS only, although that would reduce the options to about 150 watches in the price range.

Here's the link:
http://www.chrono24.com/en/search/index.htm?SEARCHSTATS_BRAND_ID=&SEARCHSTATS_MATERIAL_ID=&SEARCH_REGION_ID=&STARTSEARCH=Search&braceletMaterial=&caseMaterials=&countryIds=&dosearch=true&manufacturerIds=&maxAgeInDays=&pageSize=120&priceFrom=1900&priceTo=2100&query=&resultview=block&searchexplain=false&sortorder=1&specials=105&watchTypeId=U
post #13 of 33
Quote:
My favorite, which can probably be had in your price range brand new from an AD, is the women's version of the Speedmaster. It's very current given trends in watches but it's also one of the most classic designs around.

+1

I got this one for the wife's 40th and she loves it!

352
post #14 of 33
Thread Starter 
Thank you everyone for the input and suggestions.
post #15 of 33
Rado makes nice women's watches too in that range.
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