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What Makes the Elegance in Luxury Watches?


It is difficult to describe the word Elegance; the dictionary describes it thus…

“The state or quality of being elegant; beauty as resulting from choice qualities and the complete absence of what deforms or impresses unpleasantly; grace is given by art or practice; fine polish; refinement; — said of manners, language, style, form, architecture, etc. [1913 Webster]”

And yet it is more, there is elegance in the clouds as they sweep majestically across a clear blue sky; elegance in a Malibu stream as it whispers it’s magical melody as it cascades its way from stream to river to the ocean; elegance in the way a ballerina moves (seemingly) weightless across the performance floor, and elegance in the beauty of a finely crafted luxury watch as it accurately ticks off the seconds and minutes of the day.

Being able to paint a word picture of an exquisite luxury wristwatch is not an easy task since a watch is very personal in nature. What to one man may be the most breathtaking, elegant, finely crafted wristwatch in existence, to another may simply be one of many. To coin a phrase, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”, and yet there are certain distinctive qualities, which define a luxury watch.

A luxury wristwatch is much more than simply a horological instrument it is both a marvel of engineering and a bold statement about the person who wears it. Certainly, it offers accurate time, can immediately display the phases of the moon, or the time in London, Paris or New York, but more than simply telling time, it can be an heirloom that while it tells time, it is actually timeless.

A luxury watch is more than simply the sum of its thousands of parts, it is a work of art crafted so finely, fathers often have to from one generation to the next, and at each passing, this work of elegance still functions perfectly. When you gaze at the works of the Masters – trained in arts of being watch technicians – while they themselves may be gone, their work and the emotions they convey have transcended time, this indeed is elegance, and this is what a fine luxury watch can convey.

A luxury watch, isn’t something you’ll find a local discount store, nor will likely be found in the bargain-basement sales, it carries a price tag that is reflective of the quality. It is the sum total of one watchmaker or a small team who brought their vision to completion. Because of this fact and others, a luxury watch is sometimes priced beyond the reach of some, but their value is more than monetary, it is a treasure that surpasses the money that was paid for it, it is a treasure that once discovered, will not be easily parted with.

The list of finely crafted, elegant luxury brands changes with time, just as the watches themselves do; and while the following list is not all-encompassing, it should serve as a guide for further research…

  • There are always new designers entering this exclusive marketplace such as Jacob & Company, Alain Silberstein, Joe Rodeo, Martin Braun, Maurice Lacroix, Christiaan van der Klauuw.
  • Then there are the exclusively, not recognizable to all of us unless we travel in certain elevated financial circles, they are… Breguet, IWC and Jaeger LeCoultre.
  • And because there are those of us who would enjoy a luxury watch, but are not named among the ultrarich, their or more affordable brands such as, Tissot, Louis Erard, and Wittnauer.
  • If money is no object, consider the luxury jewelry watches manufactured by Chaumet, Chopard, and Harry Winston.
  • Or the classic elegance of Gucci and Cartier.
  • Then, of course, there are the brands that strike a chord with all of us Movado and Omega.

In the world of luxury watches, there are different categories, such as sports watches, diver’s watches, and the most stylish, dress watches. While each is durable and finely crafted, a dress watch will likely be more expensive and luxurious, crafted from gold, silver, and other precious metals, while their cousins likely are adorned with more durable materials.

A luxury watch may be purchased for a multiplicity of reasons, personal satisfaction, gift for a friend, treasured keepsake, present for a special someone or an heirloom set aside with thoughts of the passing generations.

A luxury watch does much more than simply tell time, the same as a luxury automobile, does more than conveying the rider from one destination to another; it says to all those around that this is a person who values craftsmanship, elegance, and quality.

While elegance is something that can be talked about, it is the dedication of watchmaking technicians that transform an elegantly designed time-piece on paper into an object that can be worn by the discerning individual. It is this knowledge that is imparted during the watchmaker training courses organized by the Institute of Swiss Watchmaking at their schools in the USA and Hong Kong.