It can be hard to know quite what to buy a lover of vintage, luxury watches – short of purchasing another timepiece for their collection. Some enthusiasts like to invest in luxury watch accessories to complement their timepiece of choice, others like to get immersed in artefacts or literature with horological significance. That’s why One to Watch has curated a list of stocking fillers to keep the horologist in your life ticking along throughout the festive season.
1. Horology: A Child of Astronomy, Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie Wordery £22.55
Megalithic standing stones, like our own Stonehenge, have been found on every continent since around 5000 BC, all carefully arranged to trace the passage of the sun or moon as a means of tracking time. In the absence of any huge stone monuments on ebay or if a sun dial doesn’t quite appeal, then this is a must-have book that helps the reader understand our relationship with time.
Written by watchmaking historians Dominique Fléchon and Grégory Gardinetti, the book explores the perennial relationship between ancient astronomy and measuring time, delving into mysteries such as the 3,600-year-old Nebra sky disc.
It’s a gift suited to a watch collector with a penchant for ancient history and celestial secrets. It explores our long fascination with studying the sun, Earth, moon and universe to understand the astronomical complications of modern timepieces. It’s beautifully written and illustrated with reproductions of ancient documents. An excellent book for the astronomically curious.
2. Loupe System Model 01 £418.00
Sales in watchmaker’s loupes reflect a growing urge to witness the finishing standard of haute horology; a loupe is perfect for the micro level viewing of the tiny serifs of roman numerals, fine finishing details and the impeccable level of detail invested in a fine, luxury watch.
Give the luxury watch collector in your life a better understanding of their watch from a new micro perspective. Loupe System produces some very serious models, all designed according to the same principles as a camera lens. The Model 01 provides 6x magnification and a wide field of view of up to 50mm. It sees more than the human eye, without distortions, and is the first loupe specifically engineered from the ground up for watch enthusiasts. They’re essential for the purchase of vintage, pre-owned watches and in purchasing one you will join a legion of loyal customers, including Christie’s and Jaeger-LeCoultre.
3. A Skeleton Comitti Clock David Duggan Price on request
Largely regarded as the makers of the world’s most beautiful clocks, Comitti of London first established itself as England’s finest clockmaker in the Victorian era. It remains a family-run business 150 years later. In fact, many of the antique Comitti models continue to be made today, using the same techniques and drawing the same respect and admiration that they did 150 years ago.
Skeleton clocks, with their exposed, captivating mechanism, command the attention of whichever room they’re in, and are simultaneously exquisite and grand. Clocks like The Mayfair are surrounded by a crystal glass canopy to protect the rhodium-plated fusee movement. Each part is a testament to its exclusive, handmade quality. This is also reflected in the very small numbers of each model that are made.
David Duggan Watches is one of the few London-based brokers to stock and sell Comitti clocks in all their glory. Feel free to visit our showroom or call to book an appointment to discuss our range of Comitti clocks.
4. Basic Watch Cleaning Kit WatchObsession £35.00
If you own a Cartier watch with a link bracelet, or any link bracelet for that matter, you will know it collects dirt almost as avidly as the watch collector does timepieces, particularly if it’s getting a lot of wrist time. And, if it’s been dutifully worn on your watch lover’s wrist since its purchase they might be wondering how best to clean it. If the vintage watch lover in your life happens to be away over the winter period and unable to visit us for a service, polish and maintenance check, why not bide their time with a basic cleaning kit from Watch Obsession? It will free their timepiece from surface scratches and errant dirt, and will partially restore its lacking lustre.
5. Patek Philippe: The Authorised Biography from Nicholas Foulkes Hive £124.45
This is, by all accounts, the definitive history of one of the world’s most prolific manufacturers of fine watches. Even horological novices are aware of the slightly mythical, ethereal qualities of a Patek Philippe watch. And its history is steeped in ground-breaking innovations, such as the perpetual time zone mechanism or the split-second chronograph. Written by renowned historian Nicholas Foulkes, this book lifts the veil on the last family-owned, independent watch maker in Geneva.
Whilst it’s an educational read even for the initiated, it remains an accessible book for those who are not, filled with sketches of original vintage models and anecdotes, such as the astonishing tale of how Queen Victoria came to buy a unique Patek for her husband Prince Albert.
In compiling the book, Foulkes attempts in his own words, to “tell Patek Philippe’s unique life story in a way that captures the enthusiasm, passion and near religious depth of feeling that this historic maker of watches inspires in connoisseurs and collectors all over the world.”
6. Blake Double Watch Winder WOLF £798.00
If your vintage watch collector likes to save his timepieces for special occasions, rotates the ones he wears on a weekly basis, or is more accustomed to wearing a quartz watch, then a watch winder is an excellent gift for the collector who might have everything else.
This Wolf Blake Pebble double winder in brown Teju lizard is lined with Ultrasuede and allows watches with many complications to be ‘wound’ whilst not being worn, ensuring that it stays accurate. Access to the winder is through a rotating pocket door, engineered to slide under the base of the winder and display the timepiece in all its glory. The watch is held securely with a cuff that is designed to fit heavier watches with up to 52mm case and ‘locks’ the cuff into the rotator drum.
Inexpensive watch winders can break easily and could run too fast or too long, so this is well worth the investment.
7. Wristwatch Annual 2017 by Peter Braun Wordery £18.72
Although not the most beautiful of books featured in this list, this is a must-have guide for the mechanical wristwatch collector. The exhaustive annual contains a wealth of information, including prices on more than 1,400 models made by more than 130 international brands.
It’s produced by Peter Braun, editor-in-chief at Germany’s leading wristwatch magazine Armbanduhren and is a bible for watch experts. It has 400 pages of clear typography, large photographs and engaging writing, with a number of editorial features, including one by senior editor Marton Radkai that features exciting American brands that are on the market today.
A pleasure to read in-depth or merely browse, this could be the perfect present for someone flirting with their first luxury watch purchase and provides a coherent guide that is clear enough for any level of watch lover.
8. The Savoy Safe Rapport London £4,500.00
Measuring roughly 36cm in height by 30cm in width and 26cm in depth, this convenient safe is the perfect option for those small, but precious, items, such as your watch collector’s new timepiece. It can accommodate anything from a small ladies’ dress watch to a large, oversized sports watch. Bearing the Rapport hallmarks of quality, The Savoy Safe is finished in bright Venetian red with a beige Alcantara interior, gold painted border and a draw encased with Burr wood within.
Yes, it’s elegantly designed, but, more importantly, it is the only way to guarantee protection against thieves. In fact, many insurance policies will have clauses insisting on you purchasing a safe for it to be covered.
9. Travel Watch Roll Aspinal of London £95.00
If you’re planning on taking your luxury watch lover away over the Christmas or New Year period to destinations further afield, you may want to put his or her mind at ease with this leather and suede watch roll. It’s smart, elegant and hardy enough for your watch lover’s timepiece to make it through a foreign trip, without sustaining scratches in transit.
In smooth cognac and stone suede, this is a traditional-looking watch roll that would make a great stocking filler or accompaniment to a recent luxury watch purchase. Designed with today’s modern gentleman in mind, the removable suede means it accommodates all sizes of wristwatch, and is compact enough to sit unassumingly in an overnight bag.
Also available in black, with an eye-catching cobalt blue interior, it has the capacity for up to two watches, depending on size.
10. Eerune Limited Edition Watch Art Print with Clock $1,200 AUD / £730.00
South Korean artist, professional illustrator and watch fanatic Eerune produces original framed prints featuring recreations of iconic timepieces. They navigate the space between graphic design and pop art – bright, fun and intriguing – and would make an attractive addition to any watch lover’s wall.
Prints like ‘Santos’, ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ and ‘Navitimer’ allude to popular models from Cartier, Breitling and Omega, each of which are limited to a print run of 20.
Perhaps the best, and most surprising, aspect of Eerune’s prints is that each one also tells the time – a quirk that sets them apart from other horological art work. Each print is hand fitted with hands and a quartz Seiko clock; ideal for the horologist’s mancave.
While many of these items cannot be found in the David Duggan showroom, we hope this has given you enough inspiration to keep your watch lover content on 25 December. If you are still looking for help in choosing a gift, or would like to accompany your accessories with a watch, feel free to contact the David Duggan showroom. We love to help our customers choose gifts at any time of year.