WATCH TRENDS 2011
March 2011










A RETURN TO SCALE

The market is slowing down for those oversize sport watches -- 44mm diameter and larger -- creating excellent opportunities for collectors of complications, particularly those in the 36mm to 38mm range, such as Patek Philippe's Ref. 3970, Ref. 5970 or Ref. 3940, to name a few. 









COLOR IS OVERTAKING WHITE GOLD

Rose gold is surprisingly strong and durable, threatenting to upset the traditional historic values for collectors. Platinum still dominates, in long-term value, but second-place white gold is ceding its position to the warmth of rose gold, especially in contemporary, post-1985 watches.  Manufacturers have been promoting rose gold for nearly a decade, and it has finally captured the interest of the international market.









AMERICAN STYLE BACK IN THE MARKET

The iconic design and style of  American watches made between 1925 and 1960 are among the most adventurous collectibles of the twentieth-century, and we are fortunate to see a trend of more vintage items coming back on the market that were snapped up in the 1980's and '90's and more archival information supporting the collectibility of these historically important American designs. Favorites are still hard to choose: the Hamilton Electrics whose asymmetric design and then-new technology reflect the post-War era of affluence and optimism; early engraved Elgins, Illinois and Hamiltons; all the curved tanks that brands fought so contentiously to market.  American brands are those whose design, materials and marketing were driven by the American market or American entrepreneurs: Bulova, Longines, Hamilton, Gruen, Elgin and Benrus among the most notable. Special alert:  keep on the lookout for factory-stamped cases that are platinum (esp. Hamilton), Elgin Presentations and Hamilton tanks.



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