Shot with a Nikon D3100, then manipulated in an Apple iPhone 4S app called, Pixlromatic. (Click for larger size.)
Archive for the Wristwatches Category
Shot with a Nikon D3100
This article appeared in Elements Magazine in 2004.
A timepiece can tell a lot about a person: their dreams, ambitions, and desires all carried on a wrist. Even during a boring business meeting, one can look at one’s diving watch and be reminded of a vacation in a tropical paradise. While waiting on a bank line, just a glance at a bejeweled chronometer can cut the tedium like a diamond through glass. Yet, life is more than meetings or chores—it’s about doing, seeing, and enjoying one’s days. Just as one changes one’s clothing to suit different activities, so should a wristwatch reflect the moment.
Best Watch to Wear While Skydiving
Skydiving is risky business and the last thing you want is your watch to, um, crash. I suggest donning a Bell & Ross Space 3 (around $2,000) because this high-tech timepiece has even traveled aboard the Space Shuttle (it’s the first automatic-movement chronograph to do so). The Space 3 features rubber stopwatch buttons that are ergonomically integrated into its brushed steel or titanium case. Besides, if you miss your skydiving plane, you can always boast that you’re wearing a real “astronaut watch.”
Best Diving Watch
The ultimate men’s diving watch is a Rolex Sea-Dweller 4000 (about $4,400). This is a rare model that comes sans the date magnifier on the crystal, but with a special valve enabling it to withstand decompression. Hewn from a solid chunk of stainless steel, the Sea-Dweller can withstand depths of up to 4,000 feet of the salty brine.
For ladies, there’s Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak Gem-Set (around $15,000), which has a classic case and bracelet in 18-carat yellow gold and stainless steel, and a bezel set with diamonds. It’s water-resistant to only 165 feet. (What lady is foolish enough to follow her man down to 4,000 feet anyway?)
Best Automobile Racing Watch
Speed and style have always gone hand-in-hand, and the timepiece that most exemplifies this is the Chopard Mille Miglia chronometer chronograph (starting at approximately $2,500). Crafted of titanium, gold, or stainless steel, the Mille Miglia is named after a famous Italian road race. While the stopwatch function is useful, nothing comes close to the sensation of speed like the Mille Miglia’s 1950s racing tire-inspired rubber band.
Best Watch For a Black Tie Function (Men’s)
Black tie events are a drag: weddings, charity events, or some other affair where you’ll have to part with money. Yet, one should look the role, and the Patek Philippe 18-carat white gold Celestial Watch (about $160,000) looks so good it should receive an Oscar. The Celestial features a self-winding movement with a sky chart, plus the phases and orbits of the moon. After all, during a lengthy wedding toast or a tribute speech, a gentleman can gaze at the regal blue dial and dream about the heavens—acquiring them, that is.
Best Watch For a Black Tie Function (Women’s)
For an elegant soiree, a lady best leaves the “flash” to her couture or her jewels; a tacky watch can ruin an ensemble. Simple is the key, and class is queen. Thus, I proffer to m’lady the Breguet Reine de Naples (about $26,000), which has a bezel set with 128 diamonds. This lithe masterpiece has a power-reserve and phases of the moon indicators. (A lady should match her gentleman and what better to have in common than the stars?)
Shot with a Nikon D3100.
This article was originally published in Colorado Springs Style, November/December 2011
Or, How to ‘Wear Your Automobile on Your Sleeve’
For as long as the automobile has been around, it’s been inextricably linked with the wristwatch. From 1920s timepieces that had an angled dial for easy viewing to massive ‘70s stopwatches with a tachymeter on the bezel that helped determine one’s speed, a watch has been an indispensable instrument to a driver. Wristwatches are also a way to take your “Bugatti” or “Alfa Romeo” anywhere with you, without parking or valet hassles. A display of loyalty to a particular carmaker should be nurtured, and here is our wristwatch guide to “wearing what you drive.”
TAG-Heuer Mercedes-Benz SLR
TAG-Heuer has been involved with the McLaren-Mercedes F1 team for almost two decades and the latest fruit of this relationship is the SLR watch. Celebrating the M-B supercar that McLaren built in England, the SLR is notable for its top-mounted chronograph pushers. A unique car befits a unique watch and the TAG-Heuer sure fits that bill. On rubber strapped versions of the SLR, the strap mimics the side air vents of the automobile—hot!
Breitling for Bentley Motors
Luxury British/German carmaker Bentley has been using Breitling clocks in its automobiles for almost a decade, and the wristwatch line from this partnership has been going strong for just as long. Known mainly for shiny, stainless steel cases and knurled bezel edges that recall a Bentley’s cockpit control switches, the Breitling for Bentley Motors line is just as attention grabbing as its tarmac twin. Large and with presence, both on the road and the wrist.
Ferrari Engineered by Panerai
Ferrari, the legendary Formula One team and road car builder, linked with Italian-designed/Swiss-made watchmaker Panerai. The Ferrari Engineered by Panerai collection combines the signature “big case” timepieces of Panerai with the engineering detail of Ferrari, such as the hobnail-textured dials and the cavallino rampante embossed on oversize crowns. Just like the automobiles, these watches can be had in a variety of styles: rose gold, stainless steel, or even a PVD-coated case, which as black as a set of Pirellis.
Parmigiani Fleurier Type 370
There’s a saying: “The reason why there are $2 million automobiles is because you can’t drive your $20 million house around.” Taking that further, “when one can’t drive their $2 million Bugatti Veyron 16.4 around, they can, however, tote their $200,000 wristwatch around on their arm.” To celebrate the unique engineering and design that went into the French supercar, Parmigian Fleurier designed a unique timepiece whose face is at an almost-90 degree angle to the wearer’s wrist. Winner of the “2006 Watch of the Year,” PF 370s are probably the best way to advertise to the world that you own a 267-mph car…that costs over $2 million.
Jaeger-LeCoultre AMVOX1 R-Alarm
When one thinks of an Aston, images of classic, understated beauty combined with high-tech come to mind. That’s exactly what respected watchmaker Jaeger-LeCoultre captured in their AMVOX editions. No, there are no digital displays on this timepiece, but it does, however, have an alarm. (It’s mechanical, and not battery powered.) The high-tech is further represented by a titanium case and a “carbon-fiber effect” strap. The AMVOX series is also available in other movements, such as a chronograph. It’s too bad “agent 007” sports an Omega, however.
Chopard Alfa Romeo Edition
Best known for their Mille Miglia line of racing-inspired wristwatches, Chopard once again dips its toe into Italian speed, with Fiat’s Alfa Romeo brand. Made in honor of Alfa’s 100th birthday, one can choose from a chronograph or a calendar watch, in either stainless-steel or in black DLC coating. All three feature “Italian Racing Red” hands and they’d look right at home inside an Alfa Romeo’s glove compartment. Because, you know, the owner’s getting his hands dirty under the hood, trying to get the car to start…
Blancpain Super Trofeo Chronograph
“Brash and bold” is how most would describe a Lamborghini. It certainly describes the Gallardos participating in the one-make racing series, the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo cup. In this Euro-only series, only Gallardos are allowed to play, which means that whoever wins, the victor will be driving a V10-powered screamer! To celebrate, Blancpain debuted their Super Trofeo Chronograph. Far from brash and bold, its case is black DLC and the strap is made of Alcantara suede (the steering wheel cover of choice these days). Blancpain delivers the emotions of “speed” via a bright red chrono start/stop pusher and the numbers “12” and “9” rendered like those on racers. Only 300 of these beauties were made.
Audemars Piguet Milenary Maserati
Audemars Piguet and Italian automaker Maserati teamed for Maser’s 90th birthday and produced the limited-edition Milenary Maserati. Restricted to just 900 examples, this timepiece features an interesting design, where the hours and minutes are displayed on an offset inner dial. At the far left of the face, there’s a power reserve indicator. Meanwhile, a second time zone is displayed near 6 o’clock and the date is near “2.” Naturally this beauty comes in a special presentation box.
Eterna Porsche Design P’6780 Diver Watch
The brand “Porsche Design” is synonymous with its automotive brother from Stuttgart, in that they’re both known for high-tech, sleekly styled machines that offer a uniquely Teutonic perspective with regards to their form and function. Perhaps no such timepiece from PD (made for them by the Eterna company) represents this better than the P’6780 Diver. Unlike any wristwatch you’ve seen, the entire case lifts up, ostensibly for better viewing when you’re a few hundred feet below. Yet, this contraption isn’t heavy because it’s hewn from titanium, with a natural rubber strap. The perfect watch for when one is at the wheel of a Carrera GT or underwater at the wheel of a 928 (Risky Business fans, that one’s for you).