Watch Hunt

One of my best friends was in town awhile back and we hit up the mall for some perusing, and I think bought next to nothing. We did both salivate over these watches though, and honestly, much like the tote bags I looked into last week, it’s freaking hard to tell you what exactly to buy when it comes to watches from Nixon – who yes, has a separate Canadian section on their website.

So before I reveal my pick for a watch of epic proportions, let’s talk about buying watches for people:

First, some people like watches…some people do not. Some people used to wear them and felt a weight was lifted when they stopped, others are sick and tired of whipping out their phone whenever they want to know the time, and still others have literally never owned a watch. Gauge whoever you’re buying for and where they stand on the whole ‘watch’ thing before surprising them with one. If they’ve got a pretty neutral stance on the whole thing, you’ve got pretty good odds they’ll appreciate a watch, especially one that reflects their personal style.

Second, watches, like most gifts, come in many price ranges. You can zip down to Wal-Mart and pick up an elastic-banded neon-stripe Timex (oh wait, that was me in ’95) for $20, or you can stroll into Birks and splash out on $4,000+ diamond-encrusted insurance policy on a wrist piece of bling. The happy medium is the stuff you find in department and clothing stores, which are typically priced in the $80-$250 range. When you spend this amount of money on a watch, you’re looking at solid quality, up-to-the-minute style options, decent warranties, and pretty universal appeal. Guess, Esprit, and Fossil are just a few of the major familiar fashion brands out there that often great watches for guys and gals in this standard range, making it perfect for a nice Christmas, Birthday, or Anniversary gift (bonus points for engravings on the latter).

Third, it’s okay to have more than one watch. I used to be kind of sticky about this when I was younger, but my parents both have dozens of watches in their collections. Some people might be a-ok with rocking a thin-strap leather band and gold clockface classic number 24/7 as the most neutral, work-appropriate choice, others might like to run the gamut from rhinestones and white leather to a charm bracelet style to a bold graphic print to a leather cuff embedded with a watch. Whether you’re gently suggesting someone break free from their watch holding pattern, or simply adding a new style to the mix, keep in mind whether a watch is functional at the end of the day (or night) for whoever you’re buying it for.

Fourth and finally, I don’t care about being subtle. If you have to take the person shopping under the pretense of buying a watch for yourself – or someone else – do it. I’m not saying a watch is an incredibly personal gift, but watch wearers can be mighty particular about certain details like the size of the clock face, analog vs digital reading (for the record, analog all the way), the width or material of the strap, the shape of the face, and whether they’re interested in some of the details listed above. If you’re bothering to go for something in this middle price range, you may as well get it right – just throw it out there as you browse the watch case – “Which one do you like?” and see what they gravitate towards. You don’t need to buy the exact thing they pick out on the spot, but at least you’ll know why they hate black leather, numberless clocks, or square faces.

Now back to my actual suggestion for the day: Nixon watches. They sell a huge range for men AND women, and I have to tell you I’d pretty much fall over myself for anything on this site. They even have a handy watch selector tool that lets you narrow things down by gender, display, band material, and colour – so if you know these key things, you should be able to find a handful of watches perfect for your gifted friend.

The watches I fell in love with – and these are SO not like the two I currently own – were the futuristic, silicone-banded ‘Newton’ style (which also has a digital counterpart). I’m not saying run out and snap this up for people for a myriad of reasons – namely that it’s definitely not everyone’s cup of tea. The lack of numbers, the dramatically dark clock face, the cheerful pops of colour from the majority of the ten styles you can choose from, the mod 60s meets Jetsons futuristic style, and the overall sporty feel of the thing make this skewed towards a younger, edgier set.

That being said, take a browse through the Nixon website and based on the four key elements in their ‘watch selector’ tool plus what you know about your giftee you should be able to find something equally chic but totally appropriate. I myself am equally in love with:

Alice (is that in chains? or in wonderland?) in ‘Antique Silver’ – $275

Chalet in ‘Red/Black’ – $275

The Zona – $200

And um, I need to stop there or this post will turn into a novella. Happy watch hunting!

One Response to “Watch Hunt”
  1. Satya says:

    I think the charm bracelet is so beautiful and charming. I love the look, and it is very feminine, without being overpowering like many watches with the large dials that are in style today. Great charm bracelet picture..!

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