An Expert’s Guide To Gifting Luxury Watches
Mr Alan Bedwell. Photograph by Mr Davide Annibale
Gifting is a wonderful way to express gratitude to people that are dear and special to us. Therefore, regardless of how much is spent, it really is the thought that goes into it that will resonate with the person receiving it.
As a designer of accessories and an antique dealer, I am a nightmare to buy for, and I am aware of that. My family is always at odds with what to get me. I usually have to make a list. However, with my mother being an antique dealer also, there is always something special under the tree that has been procured and stashed away by her over the past 12 months.
With regard to investing in watches, it can be a difficult and rather daunting process. It is such a personal item, and one of very few gifts, that, if loved, will be worn every day of the year, almost. That is why you really need to think about the person that you are buying for. Ask simple questions: are they active/sporty? Do they dress smartly for work? How big are they? Can they pull off a 42mm case, for example? White metal or gold? In asking these questions, it becomes easier to whittle down a selection to one or two, and then make that choice.
These three selections, I feel, cover most bases. Sporty, classic, elegant, timeless and white metal or gold. If you only own one watch, you would be very happy for it to be any of these.
For me, a Cartier Tank is always a sophisticated choice, if you’ve got the funds. I’m a little bigger, so the Américaine is very hard to beat. It’s classy, elegant, but a real presence on the wrist. Plus, it’s a real piece of watch history
TAG Heuer Autavia
A reissued icon from TAG Heuer, the Autavia has an amazing balanced look to it. Sporty, yet elegant, it can be worn with jeans and a T-shirt, as well as a more formal look, especially on the leather watch strap. This watch is steeped in motor racing history, having been worn by a number of drivers such as Mr Jochen Rindt, and more recently Mr Christian Bale in Ford V Ferrari.
Another absolute classic. One with a fabulous origin story, and the reversing case is crowd pleaser. It is also a design that never gets old. It’s definitely a more formal watch, but, if you were to own only one dress watch, this watch would make you happy for the rest of your life. Jaeger-LeCoultre is perhaps a little underappreciated for its contribution to horological history and technical brilliance. It continues to make elegant to wear and superbly made watches.