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20 November, 2019 | Blog

A Watchful Eye

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The Watchmakers Club meets in London today for the second of its 2019 events (it meets biannually, giving watch lovers a chance to view some exquisite creations, showcased by their makers). If you couldn’t make it, though, you can still read up on what’s happening in the industry right now and what there might be for you in 2020.

I took an online quiz by FHH, in collaboration with consulting agency NellyRodi, to discover which of their four identified ‘socio-styles’ would best govern my choice of watch. According to the results of the quiz, I am 44% Extrovert, 33% Idealist and 22% Connoisseur (so presumably 1% Performer, the remaining type). Armed with this knowledge, I read through their publication Watch Trends 2019 – 2020. I discovered that my Extrovert side loves bold, extravagant pieces, but this is probably somewhat tempered by my inner Idealist, who is drawn to more understated and environmentally-friendly creations. The near-quarter of me that is Connoisseur favours long-lasting models that are handed down through generations, and my 1% Performer is driven by a love of technology and innovation. Good to know. But it is a genuine delight to look through the watches featured in the publication and take in the huge range of styles and designs.

At the recent BHI Awards Day, our fairs reviewer and industry expert Martin Foster discussed the international watch industry and how things appear to be developing. His analysis is that China’s role is developing, and while there may not be many ‘high horology’ Chinese makers yet, there will be in the future as market confidence increases. It would certainly be interesting to see the effect this has on Switzerland’s current dominance.

Nauman Rashid at watchshopping.com has some interesting predictions for 2020. He foresees retro styles inspired by past designs (TAG Heuer and Tudor), salmon and blue being popular colours (as with Montblanc, Jaeger-LeCoultre and Vacheron Constantin) and interest in smaller watches (Cartier). As someone with small hands and wrists that get easily swamped, I’m very pleased about this lattermost prediction.

I suppose this is the beauty of watchmaking; how truly unlimited it is in its scope for expression and innovation, not just in aesthetics but also in the very craft of the mechanisms. Also, I think I’m really more of an Idealist/Performer hybrid.

Rachel Reeves, Editor, The Horological Journal

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