Each watch collection has its own unique DNA and there are many different kinds of watch collector. A collector that focuses on diving watches, or complications such as perpetual calendars or second time zones… to us these are real fanatics.
Almost every collector has a style or direction in how they make their buying decisions. The question that crosses our minds fairly often when talking to collectors is; how did you develop your penchant for those watches?
Unsurprisingly and satisfyingly, there is often an absence of pure logic to their answer. This is because watch passion is not a rational pursuit, but instead a pursuit of the heart.
When an ex-pilot only buys pilot watches, it clearly begins at least as a reminder of a past life – an emblem of nostalgia for the owner. Others buy watches as a matter of course, as gifts to themselves or to mark an occasion.
But this does not answer the question to a Rolex collector, “why Rolex”?
New vs old watch brands
Rolex may be a bad example, as we all know the super-brand produces exceptionally made watches that consistently go up in value long term. Historically Rolex have achieved some of the most important milestones in watchmaking. So let’s take Linde Werdelin, or Richard Mille as examples. These relatively new brands have emerged and developed their own networks of devoted collectors, not because of their history or durability (as these are not yet proven), but because of their objectives of innovation with materials and design. They also happen to incorporate excellent movements (which cannot be said for all young brands).
Richard Mille RM029
Both brands focus on advanced methods in the use of materials and also employ novel (and in some minds’ risky) designs. Both have developed fanatical followings and their creations consistently sell out.
Perhaps this is due to a genuine devotion to producing exceptional watches and such effort is consistently apparent in the final product.. Again, this is not the case for all brands. They also have a certain style of communication which involves the collector in the manufacturing process and exposes secrets that until recently in watchmaking were kept under wraps from customers. The skeptics among us may call this style of communication marketing!
By creating fantastic timepieces (rather than profitable luxury items) brands gain success amongst collectors in both short and long-term. This is the parallel between the popular old and new brands. Conversely, badly made watches do not become popular long term, no matter how fashionable they are during their day in the sun
This all being said, it’s increasingly rare to find a ‘diving watch collector’ or a ‘Perpetual Calendar collector exclusively. Watch lovers tend to collect by brand.
Timeless Luxury started out of a passion for Rolex. We come back to the brand that is so well collected that the fanatics even have their own names for specific and coveted models such as “double reds” or “Patrizzis”.
By focusing on this timeless, instantly recognisable and prolific brand, we have immersed ourselves in the wonderful world of collecting, which has inspired our own watch collection curated for seasoned collectors and newbies alike. See our collection here.