Edward Howkins, Jan 14 2022

My Collection in 2022

My Collection in 2022

Hi everyone. Following on from Hamish’s email last week I wanted to introduce myself to our new members. My name is Ed, and I co-founded The Watch Collectors Club with Hamish. I’ve been collecting watches since my teenage years, and you can read more about some of my favourite watches here

As we start 2022, I have been reflecting upon my collection: what I like about it; what I want to change; and how I am hoping to add to it this year. 

My First Rolex?

Recently my partner was lucky-enough to collect her new Explorer from our local Rolex boutique. Despite writing a blog about why people should and do love Rolex I have never properly considered buying one myself. However, this changed when the new Explorer arrived in our house. I instantly fell in love. My partner’s new watch is a combination of steel and yellow gold, which is a bit of a contradiction for a tool watch such as the Rolex Explorer. Many watch commentators disliked this watch when it was first released but grew to love it over time. Interestingly, this watch is the only time-only tool watch that Rolex has ever made in a precious metal, and I think it’s a great reflection of what Rolex is all about: reliable, robust luxury watches. If you want to learn more about Rolex, make sure to sign up for our Rolex virtual event here.

Rolex Explorer

Rolex Explorer

I hope 2022 is the year that I buy my first Rolex. I’ve put my name down for the most popular Rolex model, the DateJust; however, as is the case with my entire collection, I’ve gone for something a bit out of the ordinary and have ordered a green palm dial version. The dial is created by laser-etching a series of tiny holes into the dial and the palm motif is created when light hits the holes. 

Rolex Datejust Palm Dial

Rolex Datejust Palm Dial

Should I Buy Independent?

We wrote a series of blogs on independent watchmakers last year, covering the oldest brands and the young upstarts. Whilst I found the stories fascinating, I hadn’t been able to try many on for size. That changed when we attended the WatchProLive event in London, and I was able to try on a wide variety of watches from independent brands – highlighting the value of events! 

Two watches have been playing on my mind since then, and I’m considering buying one of them. 

The first is the Czapek Antarctique Passage de Drake. This recently re-established brand launched a stainless steel sports watch last year, as demand for that type of watch was so high. I particularly like how Czapek have created a watch that has exceptionally high finishing standards, but also has a unique design in a crowded market. To my eyes, it is the modern-day Royal Oak, and hands-on inspection shows that it compares well. Additionally, so few are made that they feel special when you see one. 

Czapek Antarctique Passage de Drake

Czapek Antarctique Passage de Drake

The second watch is the Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda Chronograph. Again, this is a stainless steel sports watch, but executed in a very classical way. The case and lugs are curved so that they hug the wrist and give the impression that the watch is much smaller on the wrist. I am fascinated by the different brushing techniques used on the case, and the delicate machining of the dial. Overall, I think the watch looks particularly beautiful for something that is designed to go everywhere. 

Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda PF Chronograph

Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda PF Chronograph

Should I Sell Some of My Watches?

Like all things, watch collections change over time. I have sold many watches over the past decade, replacing them with watches that are kept for a few years before being sold to other collectors. The watches that I want to buy in 2022 are expensive, so if I am going to buy any of them, I will need to sell a quite a large portion of my existing collection. I’m starting to prepare for that now by rotating my watches daily to see if there are any that I no longer enjoy wearing. I get very attached to watches, so this process usually takes a few cycles through before I decide what to sell. 

Mido Oceanstar Decompression Timer

Mido Oceanstar Decompression Timer

During that process of rotating my collection I will probably change my mind and decide that the three watches I’ve talked about won’t give me as much joy as a cheaper watch. Experience tells me that is probably going to happen, as the watch I wore most in 2021 was one of my least-valuable: A Mido Oceanstar Decompression Timer. 

Join us on 20th January for a casual in-person event in central London to tell us what you want your collecting journey to look like in 2022. You must sign up to attend.  

We need people to build this community. If you know of anyone who likes watches, of any kind, please let them know about us, and tell them about our events. It'd be great to have them along.

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Make the watch world simple

Make the watch world simple