A Guide to Picking the Perfect Timepiece
April 1st, 2020
Watches feel like a grown-up accessory: They can certainly make you feel like one with all the decisions that have to be made to pick a proper timepiece. Here, we break it all down for you: The movements, the types, and the designers.
First, What Sort of Movement Do You Want? (Do You Know What a Movement Is’)
A watch movement is the “heart” of a timepiece that allows a watch to tell time. There are three types of movements: manual, automatic, and quartz. Each has distinct characteristics and benefits that distinguish one from another.
The biggest difference between movements is what makes the watch work—mechanical innerworkings or a battery? With a mechanical watch (both manual and automatic are mechanical), there’s a coil-shaped mainspring that houses kinetic energy (created from winding) that’s then transferred by a gear train to an escapement, which meters out energy into regulated parts.
A quartz, on the other hand, operates with a battery (it gets its name from the quartz crystal that vibrates when electricity is applied to it). Quartz have many explicit benefits: They’re the most accurate at timekeeping, they offer excellent durability, they don’t require a lot of maintenance (batteries typically last 12-24 months), and they’re generally less expensive than mechanical options.
Many watch connoisseurs, however, prefer manual movements. Dating back to the sixteenth century, they’re the most traditional and while they require daily winding, watch enthusiasts consider the daily ritual to be quite satisfying. Plus, no battery in some ways means less work and these classics can last a lifetime.
Automatic watch movements offer a bit of a happy medium. They have rotors attached to the movement that can swing 360 degrees. Connected by a series of gears to the mainspring, the rotor provides a watch with its “energy” as the user moves their wrist throughout the day.
Second, What Type of Watch Style Fits Your Personality’
There are watches for any type of event and personality, just like any other accessory.
For a Spruced-Up Look
Dress watches, like the name implies, are generally worn at more dressed up affairs. Sleek and sophisticated, these timepieces tend to feature thinner leather bands with faces (the part that tells the time) that have simple hour indexes.
Citizen offers some gorgeous examples of dress watches. The brand’s emphasis on excellence and craftsmanship is on center stage in its Eco-Drive models. Beautiful women’s options include collections like the clean and sophisticated Axiom line and the Ladies Strap collection, classic watches with warm gold cases and black leather straps.
Swiss watchmaker TAG Heuer, though known more so for motorsports inspired timepieces, demonstrates its range of design abilities with its Heritage collection, a vintage style watch utterly timeless in its design.
For Everyday Wear
Field watches generally have a military-esque vibe. A descendent of the WWI trench watch, these are generally rugged and functional, while still being stylish. Versatile for all sorts of adventures, they’re great for casual everyday wear.
Swiss-made Luminox makes tough, powerful, and accurate timepieces for serious athletes, outdoorsmen, and other adventurers. The Luminox Land series features models designed with military, law enforcement, and SWAT teams in mind. While signature collections includes the Recon and Black Ops, there are other collections within this series like the Dress Field and Atacama Field that give a nice balance between rugged refinement and performance.
Sport Specific (Or to Just Look Extra Cool)
The most common timepiece style next to field watches is the Dive watch. (We have 007 to thank for the perpetual popularity.) The dive watch is, as to be expected, water resistant. Standard dive watches are water resistant up to 100 meters.
TAG Heuer’s Aquaracer collection includes styles for both men and women and is fit to perform in the depths or on the streets.
Luminox’s Sea series is intended for professional divers—the Luminox Light Technology ensures easy visibility and its quality is why it’s been the watch of choice for Navy SEALs, the U.S. Coast Guard, and law enforcement divers for years. They all happen to look really rugged too, with hints of greens, blues, and oranges and a black matte finish on the carbonox bands.
Two other popular watch styles are Pilot and Racing watches. For the ultimate Pilot watch, look no further than Luminox’s Air series, which was initially developed for U.S. Air Force pilots flying stealth jets. If your pilot’s license is still in the mail, at least you can look the part.
Finally, TAG Heuer’s Formula 1 and Carrera are perhaps the most quintessential examples of Racing styles. The Carrera watch is named after the famous auto race and features classic yet contemporary design aesthetics for motorsports enthusiasts as well as urban adventurers. Both collections boast styles for men and women.
Learn More About Watch Movements and Styles at Damiani Jewellers