May 07 2019
Collectors can be the most detail-oriented people in the world. Little differences mean the whole world to them, but how do they get started? Let’s look at some of the key things to consider before we set out to create a respectable vintage watch collection.
How to Start a Vintage Watch Collection
Money is not the key
This may seem like a strange sentiment when we begin speaking of collecting valuable items such as watches. These are pieces that are well-known for being engineering wonders and have been dressing the wrists of the most influential men on Earth since the very beginning. But why, then, do we say that money is not the key? It is an elementary item because there is one thing worse than having no money to spend on your collection: having a lot of money and having terrible taste. The world of collectors is divided into those who know about the subject and can be immersed in a two-hour talk about the hour hand on their latest titanium cased acquisition, and those who just wear their new gold Rolex but have no idea why they bought it. If being a watch collector can elevate your social status, being a dull one can do the exact opposite. This is why the majority of collectors are passionate connoisseurs before anything else. Remember, money is needed, but it is not the key.
Find your niche
There are as many great brands of watches as there are people who wish to buy them, but which one is the perfect brand for you? Let us break down the information into some key pieces to find the perfect niche for you:
- Communication - Every time you decide to wear or not wear something, you communicate your preferences to the world, and those preferences can open or close doors for you. So, the first key thing to bear in mind is: What do you want to communicate to the world with your watch selection? This can be broken down into three simple categories:
- Gold watches – These kinds of statement pieces are usually very closely related to luxury and big money, and people will look at you as a person of wealth even in your favorite casual locations if you are wearing a large gold watch.
- Sports watches – These pieces are usually much more sedate and have more useful information displayed. You can wear them as your everyday watch. In fact, you could be wearing a $5000 Breitling Avenger on your left wrist and be virtually unnoticed by most people.
- Iconic watches – Finally, this is an excellent category where many collectors choose to spend their money. Whether it is James Bond or Bruce Wayne or NASA astronauts or even World War I & II era soldiers, they all have a story behind them, and in this case, the watches are valuable because of the history they represent rather than the looks or functionality.
The next item you have to bear in mind when watch hunting is: What do you want your watches for? Are you an indoor collector who will not wear your pieces in public? Are you a well-known artist who will be photographed wearing your best pieces very often? Are you an airline pilot who needs to be on time all the time and in all time zones? You need to ponder over these things before making a decision. Once you find the type of watch that you like and also suits your needs perfectly, you will find yourself at home with it and ready to consider the next aspect.
This is another key element to consider in finding your niche because brands are built consciously to target a particular segment of the population. Once a brand has made that decision, they usually go all-in for it and perfect every detail of it, so much so that people often feel as if they are falling in love with them. Once that happens, the consumer suddenly needs to have them all, and immerse themselves as deeply into their products as they can. They key here is that it is a gratifying feeling to have that bond with a specific brand. Our suggestion? Follow the criteria above, find a brand that suits you, and fall in love with it.
Lastly, before we review some of the watch suggestions we have for you, it is important to be fearless when beginning your watch collecting. How so? Very simply, nobody was ever born an expert. That being said, you will probably regret your first few purchases ten years from now, but they will help you find the correct road on your way to having the most beautiful watch collection. Before wearing the perfect watch, there is no way for you to know which one you will like better. So, go ahead, be fearless and buy the one you like the most right now. After a few years, if you find that it no longer suits you, just sell it and buy another, it will not lose any value; with vintage items, it is often the exact opposite as they are likely to gain more value with time.