It’s happened: I am now interested in watches. Since Switzerland is the quality watchmaking capital of the world, I guess it was inevitable that I would start dreaming of a nice watch.
Luckily for my budget, for now I’m content to merely learn about watches and discover what my tastes are. As a graphic designer, it’s no surprise that I like watches with sleek, modern styling. I also like retro touches if they don’t interfere with clean lines. And I’ve also come to find that I love the idea of mechanical, not Quartz movements. I like the old-fashioned technology of mechanical watches, where the movement is winding a spring. Good-quality, modern mechanical movements are actually very reliable, especially Swiss-made ones. And while Switzerland is world-famous for amazing/crazy watches costing five figures, they also make movements used in watches priced as low as 500 dollars/Swiss francs.
open a forum of discussion about what William Gibson calls “the very finest fossils of the pre-digital age” and to bring our own experiences and intellect to bear on what, thus far, has been a closed cabal of high-end wristwatch manufacturers ($21,000 bling-bling anyone?) and, to some extent, high-end watch consumers who value flash over elegence and ultility. Why do I love wristwatches and where did my particular, and very recent, obsession begin to surface? Mechanical watches were the high tech of their age. The sheer complexity of involved in creating a small, perfectly functioning timepiece in a case the size of a few quarters stacked is amazing on many levels. To engineer, and eventually collect, a fine timepiece or even one that wouldn’t normally be considered a “quality” piece requires precision, intelligence, and a flair for the somewhat quixotic.