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We are pleased to announce that #YOURTIME Luxury Timepiece have been awarded the Silver A' Design Award in the category of Jewelry, Eyewear and Watch Design by the grand jury panel of the A’ Design Award & Competition which consists of internationally influential press members, established designers, leading academics and prominent entrepreneurs.
The A' Design Awards are the world’s most influential and largest design awards, presented each year in Italy. It is a great honour for us to receive this prestigious award and we would like to thank all of our friends and partners for their support and help along the way.
This award gives recognition to the excellence of design on the international stage.
The three Cs: Chronograph, Chronometer and Certification are among the most discussed words in the horology industry but not always well understood by the broader public. In fact, the first two Cs are often confused – both words start with “chrono” which comes from Greek and means nothing more than “time”. However, the second part of the word is what makes the drastic difference in meaning. Chronometer, in fact, refers simply to the measure (Greek “metron”) of time (Greek “chrono”) and is used to identify watches with high accuracy. On the other hand, chronographs are part of the so called movements with complications and are intended to feature not only hours and minutes but also other measures (generally on secondary sub-dials). This means that a chronometer might be associated with a chronograph but this last might not necessarily be a chronometer. Finally “certification” generally applies to the chronometers and we will see specifically which one, how and why.
With the move from pocket watches to wristwatches a new element had to be taken in consideration – the watch band or fastening element in general. The first watch bands (or watch straps) were made of leather, textile or metal then followed by rubber and other more innovative materials. The most exclusive watches tend to have either leather straps or metal bands. Metal bracelets are in general the most durable ones and wear well in all kinds of weather conditions and usage occasions. Their lifespan might be as long as the one of the watch itself while all other kind of bands/straps might require replacement over more or less long periods of time. In this chapter we will focus on the metal bands and explore some important factors to consider when choosing the type of metal and treatment (other materials might be covered in future posts).
Once upon a time there was a watch. It was a watch with a round shape … This is how the story of the watches started long time ago. From the sundials, water clocks, clepsydra and the first portable watches the history of the watches has always been about rounded shapes. Only in the late ninety century / early twenty century we see the appearance of the first watch cases with shapes different from the well known rounded ones (e.g. Louis Cartier 1908 and Vacheron Constantin 1912 tonneau-shaped watches). At the beginning they were based on rounded caliber movement fitted in a watch case with square / rectangular shape and then, in a second phase, new movements with rectangular shapes started being manufactured (e.g. rectangular Gruen Quadron about 1925).
Since then many other shapes have been designed and commercialized. The creative work has gone well behind the exploration of two-dimensional shapes and also complex structures are now considered for modern watches. The following section underlines the many different shapes from the most classics to the most innovative.
A wristwatch is not for everybody and only few people are part of Club 24! Accordingly to two separate consumer studies, about only 79% and 86% of the population respectively in U.S. and U.K. own wristwatches (percentages further drop among young people). As per the U.S. study, 76% of the wristwatch owners claim to have an analog watch and most of the time it is based on the 12-hour system. The 12 hour system is what we are all used to; hours are counted from 1 to 12 twice a day and in analog watches a hand indicating the hours makes two complete rotations a day.
We grow up with the 12 hour system and get used to it over time. We are so used to it that we can read a watch even without any numbering or marking system on it. However, the 12 hour system is neither the most intuitive nor the first system that has been introduced to measure the passage of time. Other systems exist and one of the most common (after the 12-hour system) is based on a 24-hour cycle. In those watches the hand which indicates the hours makes a complete rotation in 24 hours – yes, only one rotation per day.
Those watches are used by few people but there is a clear trend with more and more companies developing 24 hour watches. The question is: who is part of “Club 24” (24 hour watch enthusiasts)?
This article is dedicated to the creative minds, the most innovative and sometimes less appreciated watchmakers who craft the most unusual and unique watches. Some of their creations are worldwide renowned, others are known only by the professionals and amateurs. No matter whether they are the most expensive watches in the world or whether they are sold next door, they are all unique! We celebrate their creations and especially their entrepreneurial spirit, bravery and “badassery”!
The question is what makes a watch really unique? In a way or another every watch is unique - the only one of its kind – even the replicas are unique because they are never exactly the same as the original (luckily!). Hence, before talking about the unique and most unusual watches it is worth explaining what we mean for that.
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Black is defined as the darkest color but in reality black is not a color. Black is achromatic or “without color” – black is defined as the absence of light or its complete absorption. We all have used black during our life whether in our clothes, accessories, gadgets, vehicles ... in one way or another black has been a small or big part of our life. Some use the black color to hide feelings, fears or insecurities (or weight) but many other use it to exude power, control or to intimidate. Black is the most versatile color and suits everybody. It is the color of the seven deadly sins (pride, greed, lust, envy, gluttony, wrath and sloth) and this is the reason why it is the most used color! In fact, human being is attracted by the seven deadly sins and can’t stop ending up in either one or multiple of them. We might talk more about the concept of the appeal toward the seven deadly sins in another post but, for the time being, consider only that there are big companies that leverage this concept to create empires - think Sequoia Capital and one of their investment selection criteria or think the most successful movies and the fact that they have characters than represents in a more or less subtle way the seven sins.
The horology industry has not been immune to the black color phenomenon and over the years the use of black has been intensified. Thanks to the use of new manufacturing and decorating techniques as well as the introduction of new materials the use of black color on wristwatches has increased. The interest by some celebrities has then further enhanced the trend for black watches. From just being an accent, a detail in the watch, the black color is now being used across all elements with certain watches being exclusively in black.
This post is about the black color and about when and how the black has started being part of the horology industry. However, before jumping into the watches let’s see why black is the color of the seven deadly sins.
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You made your mind and decided to buy a new watch! So where do you start from? And where are you going to make the purchase? Buying a wristwatch might be a frustrating experience if not well planned… especially when “wristwatch” refers to a certain value item and not to the very affordable watch bought on an impulse.
This post is intended to help people navigating more effectively in the retailer landscape whether classic brick-and-mortar, internet or others when it comes to buying a new timepiece.
The most common wristwatches are based on a 12 hour system. In those watches the hand indicating the hours makes a complete rotation in 12 hours hence two complete rotations per day. There are other watches, however, that are based on a more natural 24 hour cycle in which the hand indicating the hour makes a complete rotation in 24 hours. Sometimes the two systems are used combined in the same wristwatch like in the GMT or in the dual time watches. The key question is why the 12 hour system is the most widely used and not the 24 hour one? what are the advantages of a 24 hour system based watch? And ultimately why do some people use 24 hour time watches?
There is a piece of history that always accompanies us – the watch! What is on your wrist (if you have one) is the result of thousands of years of research and development - Sumer and Egyptians are among the first to have developed and used watches. Since then every single culture or population in any geography started developing systems and deviced to measure the passage of time. The first watches were leveraging the movement of the sun, water or sand and even the consumption of candles. Modern watches have nothing to do with the initial developments but they are the direct consequences of that work and the many stories and anecdotes that came with it. You might expect that only scientist and “technical” people influenced the watch development but you might discover that even movies had an impact. We could write an encyclopedia with those many stories but we wanted to bring to you only our top 25 interesting facts – from historical facts to curiosities, anecdotes and even simple technical information.
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Human beings always had a passion for measuring the passage of time. This was the case thousands of years ago and always will be. However, over time this passion become more than just about measuring the passage of time. Nowadays who still uses a watch, most of the time, does it also for other reasons. With the current mobile phone penetration there is really no need for a watch … so why people still use it? We could argue the many reasons but the reality is that a watch is a way to express oneself. Like with a piece of jewelry (the main one for a man!) the watch tend to indicate the social status or the character and kind of lifestyle of a person. It is an extension of self. Some choose watches to feel part of a specific group (e.g. Rolex owners) or elite (e.g. Patek Philippe owners). Others, instead, want to stand out and differentiate themselves from the crowd and expensive watches might help with that. This is not to say that everyone who wants to break through the clutter needs an expensive watch but some do. Among those last there are very few that love to spend a fortune on watches and the world’s most expensive ones are created for them (and sometimes for celebrations). So what are the ingredients to craft the world’s most expensive watches?
We have identified 17 luxury signs that set the world’s most expensive watches apart from the rest. The below sections (click on the post image to expand) underline those characteristics with a very brief description.