Bellusso Jewelers Blog

Bellusso Jewelers Blog
2017-04-20

This Saturday, April 22, marks Earth Day, a time to celebrate Earth and her many bounties. Many celebrate with clean-up efforts, planting trees and committing to environmental protection efforts. The annual event was begun in 1970 and nearly 200 countries around the world participate — all managed globally by the Earth Day Network.

Today, many top watch brands also make a commitment to saving Earth's resources. Some have programs and foundations to reforest regions of the world, others support clean-water efforts, and a host of brands support protection of our oceans. We will bring you more about the brands that dedicated their resources to ocean preservation on World Oceans Day in June.

Certain privately owned watch brands have environmental foundations that look after the causes, even offering awards and grants to those studying and pursuing investigation into conservation efforts. Brands, such as Rolex and Audemars Piguet, are top in this field. Some of the larger corporate-owned brands have different initiatives. For instance the LVMH Group (which owns Hublot, TAG Heuer, Bulgari and Zenith, among others) developed its LIFE program five years ago to make management more aware of ways to become environmentally conscious. Certain brands in the group have created their own strong messages, teaming with other organizations to bring clean drinking water to countries in need, or to save animals.

Over at the Richemont Group (with brands, such as IWC, A. Lange & Sohne, Cartier, Baume & Mercier and others), sustainability is a big issue, and many of the brands have stepped up their commitment by making their factories incredibly advanced with special heating systems, air systems, recycling programs and more. IWC Schaffhausen also supports the Darwin Foundation and its protection of the Galapagos.

Often these brands have special watches made in honor of the organization or the effort they are supporting. Stop in  any time and see which brands we carry that support sustainability, the environment and Earth.

2017-04-18

Recently during the Baselworld 2017 watch exhibition, The Watchstars Awards were presented. A pinnacle in the watch industry, the international watch awards are given out annually by an international committee of experts. Watchstars honors “the best watches of the world” in five different categories. The judging is based on the previous year’s innovations.

The 2017 awards were given for timepieces unveiled in 2016 – and that are in stores now. We are proud to carry the timepiece shown, above..

Representatives of the honored brands were presented with beautiful star statues. Here are the winners in the five categories:
Classic Stars: Rolex Perpetual Air King
Technical Stars: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie
Design Stars: Hermes Slim d’Hermes Grand Feu Enamel
Stars for a Lifetime: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Extra Thin
New Stars: Bulgari Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater*

* It should be noted that while Bulgari is by no means a "new" star, the brand's haute horlogerie status of watchmaking has risen greatly over the past decade, becoming a new benchmark in the watch industry.

The Watchstars jury committee consists of the most experienced watch specialists around the world. Only committee members are allowed to nominate and vote for the winning watches: manufacturers are not permitted to submit watches. All watches, regardless of size, brand, or country of origin, are eligible for the Watchstars Awards.

There are nearly 90 jurors on the committee, including some true veteran journalists in the field of watches. Among them are Roberta Naas of ATimelyPerspective.com online watch magazine, Joe Thompson, Norma Buchanan and Mark Bernardo of WatchTime, freelancer Jason Heaton, Ariel Adams of ABlogtoWatch.com and Sabine Zwettler, freelancer.

2017-04-13

Well, auction season is in full swing, with the top watch auction houses putting some of their most recent finds up on the block. More now than ever before, the concept of buying vintage watches at auction has taken off. For young first-time collectors as well as seasoned veteran collectors, the vintage watch market, in general, and auctions, in particular, are a great way to find that one rare piece. The best auction houses include Christie's, Sotheby's, Antiquorum and Phillips by Bacs and Russo. There are also smaller auction houses to keep an eye on, as well.

We believe in investing in vintage timepieces, as typically many of these watches hold their value. Vintage watches also often make a great sentimental gift. However, before you dive in, here are three important things to know...

1 — Read up. Sometimes if you see something going up for auction that you really want it is difficult to resist. However, investigate the watch, its provenance and its rarity before you bid. Recently, the head of one top watch auction house said that most buyers of vintage pieces at auction make their biggest mistakes in the first year of auction buying. It’s important to know the authenticity of the watch, as well, to ensure the dial, hands or markers haven't been changed, as this significantly affects the value of the watch. You can read books and blogs, such as www.ATimelyPerspective.com and Hodinkee.com to learn more about hot watches.

2 — Ask for help. In addition to reading books, blogs and doing your homework, you shouldn't hesitate to ask the experts — ourselves included. Don’t be afraid to take some pictures of the watch you are considering buying at auction or in a store where pre-owned is a category. While most of the info you are seeking will be readily available if the watch is being sold by a top auction house, that may not be the case if you are buying vintage at retail stores. The one thing you will quickly learn about the watch community is that people are eager to talk about this passion and to give advice, so go to the watch forums, ask the experts and talk up the watch. Also, as an aside, if you are buying from a retailer, ask about your options for returns and refunds right up front.

3 — Have a budget and stick to it. It is easy to break the bank, but if you are not in a position to do so, don't. Other good deals will come along. If you've done your homework, you know what that value is based on sales of similar watches of that genre, make, model, dial color, etc. Happy hunting, and stop in any time to talk about pre-owned and vintage watches.

2017-04-11

If you love watches and art, you may be interested in making a trip to the National Watch & Clock Museum. Beginning on April 30 and running through the end of the year, the museum will host an exhibit featuring the work of watch photographer Atom Moore, whose creative take on time portrays watches in new and unusual ways.

Just about a year ago, Moore's photography was on display in New York and, subsequently, he published a book: Watch Portraits, with dozens of color photos of his work. The exhibit at the NAWCC in Columbia, Pa., is also called "Watch Portraits," and is open to the public.

Photo by Atom Moore.

From May 20-22, the NAWCC will be offering a three-day course on how to evaluate watches and recognizing genuine pieces vs. fakes. More information is available on the NAWCC website at this link...

2017-04-06

Once again at Baselworld 2017, Bulgari set a new world record for the thinnest automatic watch on the market. This is the brand's third world record, and each was set with an Octo piece. The newest Octo Finissimo Automatic watch is 41mm in diameter and — when cased — is just 5.15mm in thickness. The movement consists of 130 parts, including a platinum rotor, and offers 55 hours of power reserve.

The Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic ultra-thin watch was several years in the making and comes on the heels of the previous Octo record-setting watches, the Octo Finissimo Tourbillon and Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater. The previous record holder for the thinnest automatic watch on the market was Piaget, whose movement was 2.35mm thick and the case was 5.25mm thick. Bulgari sets a new bar with a movement that is 2.23mm thick and the final case watch that measures just 5.15mm in thickness. The case is crafted in sandblasted titanium with a titanium crown with ceramic insert. It is water-resistant to 30 meters and is sold with either a titanium bracelet or alligator strap.

2017-04-04

Well, the Baselworld 2017 watch and jewelry exhibition has come to a close and we can sit back and reflect on the trends we believe will make their way to wrists around the world this year.

Top among the trends was a revival of mixed metals. In fact, two-tone watches — with stainless steel and 18-karat rose gold coming together in one timepiece — were all the rage. In some instances two-tone watches made their appearance in an effort to usher in less expensive prices than all-gold, but in other instances, it was all about the look. A sleek rose gold bezel against a steel case has impressive appeal. However, gold isn't stepping aside to let the two-tone looks dominate — gold is still going strong. We saw a little yellow gold emerging, but rose gold is still in vogue.

Color also gains attention this year, with beautiful dials in pale shades of pink, blue and green. Chocolate and slate gray also reign as top dial choices for both men and women. Straps emerge strongly in all hues, including bright white, orange, red, yellow and rich fall colors.

As predicted, we saw a lot of sport watches, especially chronographs, making their appearance, as well. Many of those sport watches follow a theme, such as dive watches, pilot or aviation-inspired watches and auto-inspired pieces — all with rugged, yet refined, appeal.

Finally, women's watches are stealing the limelight as more and more brands unveiled pieces dedicated to ladies. Crafted in steel, gold and other materials, the newest women's watches are either highly classic in look, sporty chic or over-the-top with diamonds.

All of these trends will be flowing our way with new product in our cases throughout the year, so we invite you in any time to see the latest and greatest timepieces.

2017-03-28

It was 40 years ago, in 1977, that the first inkling of what would become Corum's legendary Golden Bridge watch came into being. That year, independent watchmaker Vincent Calabrese unveiled an unusual baguette-shaped movement with linear gear train, wheels etc. It didn't take long for the innovative concept to be recognized by the then-owner of Corum, Jean Renee Bannwart, who immediately purchased the patent from Calabrese. Three years later, the first Corum Golden Bridge watches made their debut.

Since that time, the line has continued to evolve, but the newest release unveiled at Baselworld is particularly appealing. The Golden Bridge Rectangle watch is a bold reinterpretation of that first rectangular piece. Taking inspiration from the Art Deco era, the new watch features a grid-like structure that forms the brand's Roman numerals. The watch is crafted initially in 18-karat rose gold (we expect more iterations) and is powered by the manually wound vertically linear Caliber CO113. Stop in any time to see our great selection of Corum watches.

2017-03-23

Every year since we can remember, the world's largest and, perhaps, most important watch exhibition, BaselWorld, has taken place in Basel, Switzerland, in March. This year, the exhibition runs from March 23 until March 30. This is a huge affair, with hundreds of watch brands unveiling their newest timepieces — watches that are sure to set wrist trends for another year.

BaselWorld is a meeting of minds, of technology and craftsmanship. Here, in five separate buildings, as well as off-site, some of the best brands in the world unveil the watches that they have been secretly working on for years.

While we will bring you specific watch brand information after the show, here are five trends we expect to be prevalent this year:

Affordability. As global economics have a huge effect on watch lineups, we expect this year to see some more affordable timepieces with quality movements and great design. These will appeal more to the younger audiences and those being a bit more frugal this year.

Over the Top.  We also still expect to see some truly over-the-top watches: timepieces with astronomical complications, musical features, and top-of-the-line complexities. Along with that, we expect that diamond- and gemstone-set watches will be strong.

Color. This is the year for brands to make a color statement. From blue to red and from pale pink to white, color should abound this year. Along with colorful dials and straps, we may find some interesting new interchangeable straps.

Sporty Appeal. Chronograph watches, pilot watches, dive watches and watches inspired by the world of automotive racing will continue to steal the spotlight. We look forward to seeing the newest affiliations and iterations from the brands we carry.

Connectivity. Smart watches in the "traditional" watch world continue. Let's see what is unveiled this week.

2017-03-21

To suit the needs of today’s consumers looking for quality and affordability, Swiss brand Baume & Mercier unveils a new collection geared for the “gentle sportsman.” The Baume & Mercier Clifton Club collection expands upon the brand’s Clifton line, but is a bit more urban chic and able to go from work to weekend.

The nicely sized 42mm watches are all shock resistant up to 550G and are made of stainless steel with a thickness of just 10.3 mm to slide easily under a shirt cuff. Colors include black, white and blue dial motifs with some bold orange accents. There are five models in the lineup, including bracelet versions, calfskin strap versions and an embossed sailcloth-like fabric model. One is an all-black version with a black ADLC sand-blasted case and a black vulcanized rubber strap with openworked sections to allow ventilation for the wrist. In all, the collection is clean, sporty and attractively priced.

2017-03-16

If you love clocks and their history, you may well be interested in the upcoming webinar being offered by the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors (NAWCC). The webinar is entitled "Hidden History: Clock and Watch Records in the Riggs Archive at Winterthur."

riggsbrother_lg

Taking place on Sunday, March 19, at 7 p.m. EST, the presentation will be made by Bob Frishman, a full-time restorer of antique clocks since 1992. He regularly lectures on the history, science and culture of timekeeping. The webinar is free. You can register for it at NAWCC.org. If you are interested but not available on March 19, you can view a recording of the session as long as you have registered.

Winterthur's clocks number more than 100 and include chiming shelf clocks made in America more than a century ago. The Riggs Archives at Winterthur are part of the Winterthur Garden and Museum in Delaware. Winterthur was opened to the public almost 60 years ago by collector Henry Francis du Pont. It is considered one of the premier museums of decorative arts with nearly 90,000 objects on display. Winterthur is set amidst a 1,000-acre preserve of rolling meadows and woodlands in the town of the same name, about 7 miles northwest of Wilmington.

caw
Page links: Next