The only truly "timeless" piece of jewelry is the watch. From the pocket watches of yesterday to the wristwatches of today, timepieces have been used by men and women across the globe for generations. Luxury watches from Switzerland and Italy have always been the most sought-after timepieces. They are made out of the finest materials imaginable: gold, genuine leather, stainless steel, and so forth. Some even have diamonds and other precious gems as accents.
There are different styles of luxury watches, ranging from contemporary high-tech pilot and diver designs to elegant designs made with black leather or metal. The overall design can be simple and classy or flashy. There are also numerous luxury sports watches for athletes.
If you are shopping for the best luxury watch, you can start with brands such as Breitling, TAG Heuer, Rotary, Swiss Legend, and Invicta. There are also watches made from the world's top fashion designers such as Calvin Klein and Gucci.
History of Swiss Luxury Watches
Everybody's heard of the term "Swiss-made" before, but where did it originate from? It all started in the 16th century in Geneva when religious leader Jean Calvin managed to garner a great deal of power and influence. He played a role in the banning of jewelry wearing. The jewelers in the country had to turn to watch-making in order to make a living. This resulted in the establishment of a new craft, which in turn lead to a lot of competition. Watchmakers had to come up with new ideas and innovative techniques in order to stay a step ahead of their competitors.
Some of those techniques are still used in watch-making today. In the 1770s, the Perpetual watch was invented by Abraham Louis Perrelet. It was the forerunner of the self-winding watches of today. In the early 1800s, Louis Moinet created the first ever chronograph watch.
Today, there is a global market for Swiss luxury watches. They still maintain the prestige that they've always had. Many of the brands have been around for over 100 years. Breitling and Movado, for example, have been around since the 1880s.
All of the leading watch brands offer a collection of Swiss made watches. They combine traditional techniques and Swiss made quartz with modern features such as calendars and water resistant technology.
Italian Luxury Watches
When it comes to fashion, anything that is Italian made is considered to be of the highest quality imaginable. This is true where watches are concerned as well. While many contemporary timepieces are mass produced by machines, there are still a few series here and there that still completely handcrafted. Panerai and Bulgari are two Italian brands that are well-known for their handcrafted pieces. Italian flair combined with Swiss watch-making techniques: the sophistication of some of these watches is immeasurable.
There are Italian luxury watches that appeal to flight enthusiasts. The Brega pieces in particular stand out with their robust cases and large dials. Every single piece is handcrafted by experts. The designs were originally created for the Italian Navy in 1881 by engineer Alex Brega.
As noted above, many prestigious fashion designers and brands offer a series of luxury watches. If you want accessories to go with your Armani dress, Gucci handbag, Calvin Klein suit, etc., you can find an Italian watch to match.
Choosing the Best Luxury Watch
With all of the classy Italian and Swiss timepieces out there, how can you narrow down the choices?
Here are a few tips to help you choose.
- Your budget is one of the first things to consider. Luxury and designer watches aren't all expensive. Some can be quite affordable. An entry-level or mid-range luxury piece might be ideal for you if you don't want to invest in a high-end watch.
- You should consider the design. Since you will be wearing it against your skin, it should be made out of materials you would find comfortable. The straps can be made out of alligator leather, high-quality rubber, stainless steel, nylon, etc.
- Be sure to choose a timepiece with a high-quality case. The case can be made out of cheap materials such as plastic to expensive materials such as 14kt gold. In many modern designs, platinum is becoming a popular choice due to its durability. Titanium cases are good choices as well since it's a light material and doesn't make your wrist feel weighted down.
- As for the color, you will find that there are timepieces that feature every color and combination of colors imaginable. Whether you want a neutral color, pastel color, or bold and flashy color, today's watch brands offer all of these.
- Why are you buying a watch in the first place? Do you want to save it for special occasions or wear it every day? If it's the latter, then you might want to go with a neutral design. It's important to choose a piece that matches your personal style.
- In addition to the design and brand, you should also consider the actual craftsmanship and mechanisms of timepieces. Do you prefer automatic watches or chronographs? What kind of dial do you prefer? How do you want the markers and numbers to be displayed? What about an analog watch?
- Speaking of dials and markers, readability is one of the most important considerations. It would be a waste of money to buy a luxury watch if you can't read the time easily. Some dials feature Arabic numerals, some feature Roman numerals, and some feature tiny diamonds representing the numbers. Contrast is important as well. The color of the markers and numbers should contrast well with the color of the dial and hands.
These are some of the questions to ask when shopping for luxury watches. Go with a brand that is renowned for its superior timepiece technology and craftsmanship. As with any luxury accessory or item, there are some fakes out there. Make sure you will receive a 100% authenticity guarantee before buying a timepiece - especially if it's a higher-end model.