or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › The Watch Appreciation Thread (Reviews and Photos of Men's Timepieces by Rolex, Patek Philippe, Breitling, JLC etc...)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

The Watch Appreciation Thread (Reviews and Photos of Men's Timepieces by Rolex, Patek Philippe, Breitling, JLC etc...) - Page 2517  

post #37741 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by benjamin831 View Post

How do you guys feel about a brown croc strap on a black dial watch?

Depends on the shade of brown, but its usually a killer combo. I have had 2 watches with brown straps and black dials.
post #37742 of 48312
Looking like a Rolex type of Friday.

Everybody have a great weekend!


wtszkk.jpg
349as5t.jpg
post #37743 of 48312
Hodinkee site not working for me. Cant read Belli link. frown.gif

I too am wearing my Rolex on this Friday. smile.gif
post #37744 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by in stitches View Post

Hodinkee site not working for me. Cant read Belli link. frown.gif

I too am wearing my Rolex on this Friday. smile.gif

It's an open letter, so no issue with reproducing it here!
Open Letter from RW Smith (Click to show)
Over the last few years I have observed a renewed interest in British watchmaking with varying degrees of encouragement and dismay.

For the last twenty-five years, I have absorbed myself in designing and making complete and original pieces of horology in keeping with our great history of British watchmaking. As apprentice to the last great British watchmaker, Dr George Daniels, I had the honour of witnessing such history at first hand.

My reputation and methods are entirely founded on being a British watchmaker in the truest sense of the claim; by making watches in their entirety in our studio including, most importantly, the movements.

Today I am encouraged that much is happening with investment and job creation in watchmaking, as well as renewed interest in our rich horological heritage.

But I am dismayed by the current direction and ethos (or lack of it).

We are very much in the infancy of a revival in the British watchmaking industry, but we are also at its most critical point. Our actions today will define the future.

Since my studio only produces around ten pieces per year, they are clearly available to only the most determined of collectors. The field therefore remains open for the first volume-produced ‘true’ British watch, which will of course include a British movement, designed and made in its entirety within our shores.

To date, this has not been achieved by any current British watchmaker. So where, in fact, are we?

In my view today, there are three other distinct types of British watchmaking company.
The first (which is typically an overseas holding company) will rake through our horological history books and appropriate a watchmaker’s name (and valuable heritage). They then make extraordinary claims as to their company having direct lineage back to that original watchmaker.

This is clearly misrepresentative and it is frankly embarrassing when I meet collectors who have bought watches from a "heritage brand" in the false belief that their watch is directly connected to the company’s founder or has been produced in Britain.

The second type is the product designer who simply adds some design flourishes to an existing ‘base’ watch, either Japanese or Swiss. Calling them "watchmakers" is akin to calling a maker of picture frames the "artist."

The third type (and includes the makers I feel should be conditionally applauded) is a new British watch company, started from scratch by founders with their own vision.

However, despite some noble aspirations, they again readily tap into our rich history, mention a few horological greats, choose a very "British" sounding name, and then quickly discard this rich British watchmaking heritage by conveniently buying in foreign components.

Looking back in history, we see some eminent British watchmakers buying in quality Swiss movements and so you may say “what’s wrong”?

Well, these days it is all about the presentation together with lofty claims of provenance.

Recently I witnessed a British watchmaking company claiming to have designed and made their new movement in house in England. If you can’t “kid a kidder,” just try kidding probably the best informed collecting community there is! Within minutes, eagle-eyed watch devotees online realised that the movement in question was designed and made in Switzerland. The fallout was astonishing, but not a surprise, because the watch devotees had been lied to and taken for fools. The statement was quickly retracted. But the damage was done – and not just to the individual company.

With new British watch brands I hear, all too often, talk about these manufacturers blazing the trail for a re-birth of British watch making and yet, on even cursory inspection, their watches are ostensibly of foreign origin. Furthermore, for anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of our recent history British watchmaking never really died, thanks to the pioneering work of the late aforementioned Dr George Daniels.

While the number of Daniels’ entirely British watches was extremely limited, their significance was global and historic. Above all, Daniels proved that the mountain could be climbed, that it could be done!

These premature and deceitful claims diminish Britain’s rich horological past, and prejudice its present and its future.

Let me state once again, there is no shame in a British watchmaker using Swiss movements to drive their watches. Some of our forefathers did just this, driven by economic expediency and the quality of movements available.

Today there are no movements being mass produced within Britain and so common sense dictates that we must look to Switzerland for the supply of quality movements until we British are in a position to honestly declare that we are able to mass produce high quality mechanisms to drive our watches.

This is an incredibly difficult endeavour. It will take huge investment and a concerted effort – perhaps an unprecedented partnership between our British watch companies.

But isn’t that the point? A true British watch is not meant to be easy. Easy has no interest or value.

George Daniels achieved his acclaim and rightful place in horological history by climbing that most difficult face of the watchmaking mountain. Lacking any readily available British components, he worked out how to make each and every one of them and hand made his watches from scratch. It was brave; unprecedented. It should have been impossible – like using an ascent of Everest as a course in rock climbing!

Today, the current crop of ‘watchmakers’ are indeed planting their Union Jacks in the same spot at the top of that mountain.

But instead of climbing it, they are flying up it, business class - courtesy of ‘Swiss Air’.

Let me be absolutely clear here. If we take a ‘binary’ view on provenance, taking a Swiss movement, finessing it and framing it does not constitute making a ‘British’ watch. Claiming otherwise diminishes the very heritage these companies seek to gain value from. At last year’s Salon QP, I spoke about the need for British watchmakers to take the challenge of producing true British watches more seriously if our revival is to be anything more than a fantasy.

Within a year of making that speech (which can be found online), I am therefore dismayed to find that some of my fears have already come true.

I make no apology for being a purist. Ours is the purest of mechanical arts.

Perhaps I am an alarmist? But when I read comments from collectors all over the world talking (justifiably) about “more British smoke 'n mirrors” is it really such a big conceptual leap for this to slip into the collectors’ consciousness and cause long-term damage to the reputation of British watchmaking?

For me an industry’s ability to self-regulate is a privilege, not a right.

The only fundamental right should be that of the consumer to be able to purchase products which are precisely what they say they are.

It seems we can learn a thing or two from the food industry and their Protected Designation of Origin (PDO). The purpose of the regulation is to protect the reputation of regional foods and eliminate the misleading of consumers by non-genuine products.

So even if I spend £2 on a “Melton Mowbray Pork Pie,” the regulation dictates that my purchase has been 100% made where it claims to be made, and to a process consistent with its heritage.

However, if I invest £5,000, £10,000 (or more) on a wristwatch, it currently seems that no such integrity of provenance is even required, let alone protected.

This seems pretty ludicrous.

If we are to become the beneficiaries of Britain’s incredibly rich heritage in watchmaking, then we must be curators of its reputation. Perhaps we should look to establish our own basic standards to establish our country’s watch making provenance.

Let’s hope nobody does it for us, because I believe British watchmaking is currently taking liberties with that privilege. Some of its participants are making misleading claims as to the British provenance of their watches in order to boost the value of their products.

Our country rightly has claim to significantly defining what we carry on our wrist to this day. Many inventions, which the Swiss have brilliantly mass micro-engineered into the watches of today, were actually British in origin.

This wonderful heritage contributes to what makes a British watch worth owning. British country-of-origin bestows a watch with significant added-value.

So what needs to be done?

While we continue to be self-regulating, I ask for aspirant British watchmakers to show restraint in their claims. I ask for them to take their responsibility as curators of Britain’s watchmaking heritage – and its future – more seriously. As heirs apparent to this heritage we need to curate that reputation instead of simply trying to cash in on it.

Having devoted my working life to developing British watchmaking I passionately believe in our industry and its potential. My aim is not to denigrate the aspirations of those who are intrepidly setting out to create mass-produced British watches. It is my hope that the global community of watch collectors will also forgive recent indiscretions as the exuberance of youth.

But let’s not spoil our ongoing efforts by prematurely popping the champagne corks and declaring the "Second Coming" of British watchmaking.

Above all, let’s ensure that we protect our industry’s reputation by applying the only true virtue for which we should be renowned...

...Good timing.

Roger W. Smith

Isle of Man. October 2014
post #37745 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by benjamin831 View Post

How do you guys feel about a brown croc strap on a black dial watch?

It truly depends on the watch and the color brown used.  Some look great together, someone here has a PAM with a dark brown strap that looks great...others I've seen paired together with less success.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wurger View Post

from the interview back in 2012, Juan-Carlos Torres of VC mentioned that VC is moving to inhouse movements for all except for keeping Lemania. He mentioned time frame of 2 to 3 years.

Since the auto chronograph didn't come out this year, I guess it will next year.

http://www.hodinkee.com/blog/interview-juan-carlos-torres-ceo-of-vacheron-constantin

I take the timing mentioned in the interview with a grain of salt. My former VC AD had talked about an them working on an in-house chronograph movement several years ago, and they still don't have one.   Plus, I imagine when they finally do have one...an Overseas chronograph with in-house movement will have an MSRP that is substantially more than the current model.  

 

For me its not a big deal.  As long as the watch I'm buying has a very high quality movement, it doesn't have to be made in-house to make me happy. 

post #37746 of 48312
Beat me to it.
post #37747 of 48312
Thanks, Belli. That was a great read. cheers.gif
post #37748 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dino944 View Post

 As long as the watch I'm buying has a very high quality movement, it doesn't have to be made in-house to make me happy. 
Same here. When I was strongly considering the Concord Impresario chronograph a watch geek friend on mine promptly dismissed it for not having an in-house movement, while I had no problem with its El Primero movement;
post #37749 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by benjamin831 View Post

How do you guys feel about a brown croc strap on a black dial watch?

Depends on the watch but it can work pretty well, IMHO.

10745163203_f358fe0478.jpg

Sadly I haven't worn it since this happened to it:

13917554045_c59115ff90_n.jpg
post #37750 of 48312

^^ Hahaha!

 

I think it looks great on sporty watches and pilots, as long as they don't have prominent or coloured bezels.  Panerai of course, pilots for sure, and Speedmasters....brown strap = win.  Black dialed dress watch I think is more difficult.

post #37751 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by mimo View Post

^^ Hahaha!

Yeah, this is becoming a bit of a problem . . .

15697814586_70546018a2.jpg

For those who are wondering, I ended up *not* clicking send on that. LOL
post #37752 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tried and True View Post


Same here. When I was strongly considering the Concord Impresario chronograph a watch geek friend on mine promptly dismissed it for not having an in-house movement, while I had no problem with its El Primero movement;

Actually, fewer than half of my watches have in-house movements.  I bought them knowing  and appreciating that they used JLCs, Piagets, F.Piguets, and El Primeros etc. and I have no regrets about any of them.  In fact, most of them are more collectible (than ones I have with in house movements) and several have garnered unsolicited emails from other collectors asking to purchase them.  

 

Great watches are great watches regardless of whether the movements are  made in-house or not.  

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TC (Houston) View Post


Yeah, this is becoming a bit of a problem . . .

For those who are wondering, I ended up *not* clicking send on that. LOL

Her text references rose gold?  I thought your incoming watch was a YG GMT ?

post #37753 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dino944 View Post

Actually, fewer than half of my watches have in-house movements.  I bought them knowing  and appreciating that they used JLCs, Piagets, F.Piguets, and El Primeros etc. and I have no regrets about any of them.  In fact, most of them are more collectible (than ones I have with in house movements) and several have garnered unsolicited emails from other collectors asking to purchase them.  

Great watches are great watches regardless of whether the movements are  made in-house or not.  

Her text references rose gold?  I thought your incoming watch was a YG GMT ?
That little detail did not get lost on me, either, Dino.
post #37754 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by benjamin831 View Post

How do you guys feel about a brown croc strap on a black dial watch?

When it's done properly, the results can be amazing.
post #37755 of 48312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith T View Post


When it's done properly, the results can be amazing.

+1.

 

I believe I have posted this before, but here is my ex-Speedy on Omega chocolate croc.

 

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
This thread is locked  
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › The Watch Appreciation Thread (Reviews and Photos of Men's Timepieces by Rolex, Patek Philippe, Breitling, JLC etc...)