Classic wrist watches and authentic denim are actually quite alike in many ways.
Just like so many of the iconic watches, denim is timeless and not affected by fashion; timeless and ever so elegant like a pair of Ray-Ban Wayfarers, a pair of Red Wings or a Burberry trench coat.
We asked the Danish watch aficionado and expect Kristian Haagen to point out five watches that match your denim outfit.
In addition to his five watch recommendation we asked Kristian what inexperienced first-time watch buyers should look out for when in the market.
In your personal opinion, what do you consider a quality watch?
“A quality watch is a watch that has been made for assembly. Meaning a mechanical watch that can be repaired to work flawlessly again. Vintage Rolex sports watches are a great example. They were launched as tool watches back in the 1950s and 1960s. And you can still wear them, not only because the design is so timeless but also because the movements are rugged and easy to adjust and service.”
If I want to buy a vintage watch, where should I begin to look?
“If you want to look into the world of vintage timepieces then you should make sure that all parts are original. But also make sure that the watch can be repaired. It is getting harder to get spare parts for certain vintage watches.”
Based on which criteria should inexperienced buyers evaluate a watch?
“An inexperienced buyer should always consult the experienced counterpart. Go to a vintage watch dealer instead of a retailer of new watches. The vintage dealer should be able to take you through periods of time (pun intended) whereas the retailer is only able to sell you a new watch.”
What are you looking for when you evaluate a watch?
“When estimating watches I also check for authenticity. Of course I check the brand of the watch as most older watches are emotional products. Meaning a watch of gold is much more than a watch of gold, if it is made by Patek Philippe. Emotional values are an undefinable currency that are obvious on auctions when for instance Patek Philippe and older Rolex watches are on offer.”
Who do you consult when you’re in doubt about the details of a specific watch?
“When in doubt I contact foreign experts. I also consult with heritage departments and museums as well as look through my massive collection on horological literature. The internet, of course, is too a great help once in a while, lots of info there, yet too much sometimes and too often doubtful as discussion forums often offer fierce verbal fighting between dealers and collectors. Watches are indeed very sensitive subjects and I rarely partake in any online discussions at all.”
Watches appeal to men because it’s one of the few pieces of jewellery that is accepted by other men. Denim is like that too.
If the style is classical and the quality is high, then most men can wear denim from top to toe without having fingers pointed at them. This accounts for wrist watches as well.
Wrist watches however also represent storytelling and men love to tell a good story. Without a good story to tell, you are just a man. With a good story to tell you are an entertaining man.