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    Watch 101: Your Guide To Buying A Luxury Watch

    Chanel J12 and Hermes Heure H Watch | Yoogi's Closet Authenticated Pre-Owned Luxury yoogiscloset.com

    A luxury watch is a wearable work of art that tells time and history. This article will cover the different types of watch movements, watch terminology you need to know, the history of watchmaking from the most iconic luxury brands, and the most popular watch styles by luxury brands. It's important to note here that nearly all luxury brands assemble watches in Switzerland.

    In this article
    All about luxury watch brands
    Watch movement
    Watch terminology

    Cartier Watch Ellipse Watch | Yoogi's Closet Authenticated Pre-Owned Luxury
    Chanel J12 watches | Yoogi's Closet Authenticated Pre-Owned Luxury

    Cartier is one of the most prestigious jewelers in the world, a symbol of luxury and sophistication. Louis-François Cartier founded Cartier in Paris, France in 1847 by designing jewelry for kings. In 1910, Cartier revolutionized the watch industry with the invention of the folding clasp. Today, Cartier’s watch business today has six production sites in Switzerland and is world-renowned for their iconic watch models like the Tank and Santos. Cartier started with bespoke jewelry and timepieces, now they are a piece of history.

    Most popular Cartier watches

    Tank
    Ballon Bleu De Cartier
    Tank Anglaise
    Clé De Cartier
    Santos

    Shop Cartier Watches


    Chanel

    The first Chanel watch was launched in 1987 with the Chanel Première, a bracelet watch band with classic Chanel chain and woven leather and an octagonal watch face. The Chanel Première's unconventional design was inspired by the Place Vendome, the iconic square in the heart of Paris, and the top of a Chanel perfume bottle. With the success of the Premiere, the J12 Collection watch was released in 1999, shocking watch aficionados everywhere with the use of ceramic as its core material, a new material in watchmaking.

    Most popular Chanel watches

    J12
    Première
    Mademoiselle
    Boy-Friend
    Code Coco

    Shop Chanel watches


    Hermes

    Hermes has been tinkering with watches since 1912 with custom leather watch straps for pocket watches. La Montre Hermès develops its own independent manufacturing resources to create every piece of their luxury watches in Biel, Switzerland. Between 1978 and present, Hermès rolled out some of its most popular watches, including the Clipper, the Cape Cod, the Medor, and the Heure H, with design details inspired by their 'H' logo and their popular Kelly bag.

    Most popular Hermes watches

    Heure H
    Clipper
    Arceau
    Kelly
    Cape Cod
    Medor

    Shop Hermes watches


    Rolex

    Rolex is a Swiss watch brand that has a legacy that spans the globe with its pioneering watch technology and iconic designs. Rolex began with the invention of the first waterproof wristwatch, the Oyster. Rolex watches are conceived, designed, manufactured, and tested in Switzerland. Rolex uses 904L grade stainless steel, which is more resistant to corrosion and has a beautiful luster when polished. Rolex has developed a range of iconic timepieces that can be found on the very highest summits to the deepest oceans on pioneers, artists, athletes, and Yoogi's Closet co-founder, Simon.

    Most popular Rolex watches

    Submariner
    Yacht-Master
    Datejust
    Oyster Perpetual
    Daytona

    Shop Rolex watches


    Louis Vuitton watches

    Louis Vuitton released its first collection of luxury timepieces in 2002 with the Tambour collection. Like all of Louis Vuitton's designs, each timepiece features an homage to the brand's origins in travel with sophisticated complications and design details such as monogram flower motifs or LV initial. The watchmakers of La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton in Geneva use their mastery of watchmaking to create men's and women's timepieces. The Tambour Horizon collection marks the first smartwatch made by a luxury brand with customizable apps and exclusive LV content.

    Most popular Louis Vuitton watches:

    Escale
    Tambour
    Tambour Horizon smart watch
    Voyager

    Shop Louis Vuitton watches


    Audemars Piguet

    Audemars Piguet is one of the oldest fine watch-making manufacturers, founded in 1875 by childhood friends Jules Louis Audemars and Edward Auguste Piguet when they created the first-minute repeater wristwatch. Pronounced aw-duh-mahs pea-uh-jay.

    Most popular Audemars Piguet watches:

    Royal Oak
    Code 11.59

    Shop Audemars Piguet


    Chopard

    Chopard is a Swiss watchmaker that has been family-owned and privately run since 1860. The company was originally known for its ultra-thin pocket watches.The Happy Diamonds collection was a revolutionary design when released in 1976, featuring diamonds held between two sapphire crystals that move freely around the dial.

    Most popular Chopard watches:

    Happy Diamonds
    Happy Sport
    Imperiale

    Shop Chopard watches


    Jaeger-LeCoultre

    Founded in 1833, Jaeger-LeCoultre is Swiss luxury icon of watchmaking, with over 200 patents and more than 1,000 different calibers. Jaeger-LeCoultre is one of the most innovative in watchmaking history with achievements including the world's smallest movement and a clock with near-perpetual movement (the Atmos clock). The unique Reverso design features a unique swivel case to be swiveled in its carrier to protect the watch glass.

    Most popular Jaegar-LeCoultre watches

    Reverso
    Rendez-vous
    Master
    Atmos

    Shop Jaeger Le-Coultre watches


    Tiffany & Co.

    Tiffany & Co. was founded in 1837 in New York. Tiffany & Co. began selling watches in 1847, making the brand one of the first watchmakers in America. In 1853, the nine-foot bronzed statue of Atlas holding a clock above Tiffany’s store at 550 Broadway was one of the first public clocks in New York City. The early 20th century saw great advances in the miniaturization of watch movements and the popularization of wristwatches for ladies, especially in the Art Deco years. In 1945, Tiffany & Co. gifted U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt a gold calendar watch as a birthday gift. Today, all Tiffany & Co. watches are crafted and assembled in Switzerland.

    Most popular Tiffany & Co. Watches

    Atlas
    Metro
    CT60

    Shop Tiffany & Co. watches


    Van Cleef & Arpels

    Van Cleef & Arpels is known for exquisite timepieces that are transformed into jewels. In 1918, Van Cleef & Arpels released their first timepiece, a jeweled chatelaine that was attached to the waist of a woman's dress. Van Cleef & Arpels created its first wristwatch, a white and yellow gold piece with a leather strap in 1923. Many VCA pieces appear as secret watches, like bracelets that open to reveal the time of day at the touch of the wearer, or timepieces hidden in the bracelet like the Cadena.

    Most popular Van Cleef & Arpels watches:

    Sweet Alhambra
    Charms
    Cadenas
    Poetic Complications

    Shop Van Cleef & Arpels watches

     

    Van Cleef Charm Watch | Yoogi's Closet Authenticated Pre-Owned Luxury yoogiscloset.com


    Different types of watch movement

    The beauty of a luxury watch is in the movement: how it actually tells the time. It's basically the engine of the watch. There are three main styles of watch movement in modern watches: quartz, automatic, and mechanical.

    Mechanical

    Mechanical watches are wonders of engineering. Most mechanical watches today are automatic, or self-winding, which means they’re wound by the wearer’s natural movement. The second hand in a mechanical watch moves in a smooth sweeping motion. In order to activate those moving parts and keep the watch accurate, mechanical watches store power mechanically—without the aid of a battery, then releases power in a controlled manner to turn the gears.

    The movement of a mechanical watch must be regularly maintained and inspected in order for it to perform at its optimum level. Models equipped with a mechanical movement should be serviced at least every three years.

    Automatic

    An automatic watch is a mechanical watch that makes manual winding unnecessary. A watch with automatic movement is self-winding, using the movement and energy from the wearer's wrist is transferred automatically to cause a rotor to rotate and power the watch.

    Quartz

    A quartz watch is powered by a battery and a tiny synthetic quartz crystal. The battery emits an electric current, which oscillates the quartz crystal at a precise frequency. While they are more accurate than mechanical timekeeping devices, quartz watches lack the intricacy of a mechanical watch.


    Basic watch terminology you need to know

    When you've decided which style of watch you want, you might want to learn what all the words mean. The world of watchmaking and watch terminology is very complex, so we hope this helps!

    Bezel
    A bezel is an outer ring of a watch that protects the crystal. Dress watches might have a small, plain bezel, while sportier watches such as divers and aviators might have larger, rotating bezels capable of measuring elapsed time.

    Bracelet/Strap
    The bracelet is what attaches the watch to your wrist. When made out of leather, it’s referred to as a strap. In order to be considered a bracelet, the band must be made of metal.

    Case
    The case of a watch is the housing for the dial and movement. Watch cases are most often made of stainless steel. Watch cases come variety of different shapes and sizes, but the most common is round. Case width and thickness are two common measurements to look out for.

    Chronograph
    A chronograph is a special feature on a watch that offers stopwatch and timing functionality in separate windows on the watch face. Designer chronographs can have either automatic or quartz movement.

    Complications
    Complications are elements of a watch dial that offer functionality outside of the basic time display. A date display, usually positioned at 3 o’clock, is an example of a complication. A chronograph is also considered a complication.

    Crown
    The crown is the small knob on the side of a watch, usually positioned at 3 o’clock, that’s used to set the time and date.

    Crystal
    Crystal is the transparent cover material that sits above the dial, usually a highly scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, designed to protect the watch from dirt and water and reduce glare. Most modern Swiss timepieces have sapphire crystal.

    Dial
    The dial is the face of the watch, where the hands and markers live.

    Escapement
    An escapement is a mechanical link that periodically releases the gear train to move forward, advancing the clock's hands.

    Hour Markers
    Typically Arabic numerals, Roman numerals, baton or dot markers to indicate hours from 1-12.

    Hands
    The hands are the markers on the dial that indicate time. Most watches have at least three hands to show hours, minutes, and seconds.

    Guilloche 
    A geometric line pattern on the etched dial of the watch.

    Jewel
    These are small sapphires or rubies that act as bearings for the gears to help reduce friction. The jewel is in the movement of a watch.

    Luminosity
    Many watches have hour markers and hands that glow-in-the-dark, allowing the wearer to see in murky or dark spaces like the deep water or night skies.

    Lugs
    Lugs are the pieces of metal extending from the 12 and 6 o’clock positions of the case that help hold the watch strap or bracelet to the case.

    Moonphase
    This keeps track of the current phase of the moon including full, half, quarter, and new moon; sailors used it originally to gauge tides.

    Movement
    This is the watch’s engine. It powers the watches functions and keeps its time, and is located within the case.

    Oscillating Weight
    For automatic watches, this weight uses gravity to help wind the watch. As a user wears it on their wrist, the watch continues to wind without manual intervention.

    Perpetual Calendar
    This is the most complex calendar available on a watch. It features the month, day, date, year, and even takes leap year into account.

    Pusher
    This is an attachment to the case that would control the watch functions, such as a date adjustment or chronograph.

    Subdial
    A subsidiary dial, or subdial, is any smaller dial within the larger dial. Chronograph watches often have two or three subdials, which measure running seconds, minutes, and hours.

    Sweeping Seconds Hand
    Instead of jumping with every tick, a sweeping seconds hand moves smoothly across the dial or subdial. Most mechanical watches, like Rolex, will have a sweeping second hand.

    Tachymetre
    This is a feature on a watch that allows the user to measure speed and distance.

    Tourbillon
    The tourbillon is one of the most valued features in luxury timepieces.  The tourbillon (French for “whirlwind”) is used to average out the effect of gravity when the watch is stuck in different positions. The escapement is housed in a rotating cage that constantly moves.


    To wear a luxury timepiece is to own a piece of history. All of our items are authenticated by our in-house experts, so you can shop with confidence for designer watches at Yoogi's Closet.

      
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