I recently started to give myself time to sketch watches. Not only does this allow me to look at watches in a deeper way, it also enhances my appreciation for their beauty and individuality. It’s also a great opportunity to think about the watch’s unique story.
For instance, I recently sketched a beautiful rose gold Vacheron Constantin from the 1940s, which I acquired from an auction in the Midwest. Naturally, I asked the auctioneer how this watch came to auction. It belonged to a lady who came to the United States in 1943 from Vienna. Although I am not certain, I can only assume it was to escape World War II as my mother-in-law had done. As I sketched the vintage Vacheron Constantin, I imagined this young lady leaving Austria through either Belgium or the United Kingdom to cross the Atlantic towards safe American shores. During the tumultuous journey, she had in her possession her father’s Vacheron Constantin.
As I continued to sketch the watch, I pictured her clutching onto her father’s timepiece, trying to channel him to protect her from the dangers that stood in the way of her path to freedom. This watch must have meant so much to her—a person, a moment in time, and a glimpse of a better future.
When a timepiece reflects history
After the lady died last year at 93 years old, this vintage Vacheron Constantin was discovered in a cabinet where it had lived for the last 73 years. All those decades safely tucked away from the outside world preserved the timepiece’s condition. Its rose gold case remained unpolished while the more than seventy-year-old leather strap is just stunning.
The story has moved me so much that I have decided to bring the vintage Vacheron Constantin back to life by fixing it up and passing it on to another generation who will continue the watch’s saga. Drawing not only makes you really discover the aesthetics of the watch but it also transports you to a quiet and peaceful time. It is an excellent therapy of thoughts and introspection.
Each timepiece is unique thanks to both its design, in addition to the stories of the designer, watchmaker, and ultimately, the wearer. Why a person decides to select a specific brand and model gives a little insight into their taste and perspective. This little object that calls our wrists home is a small part of us. A piece of our life’s legacy. Throughout our life’s joy, sadness, events, holidays, and so on, a watch is our loyal companion and witness to both momentous and minor moments.
I can still vividly remember going with my mother to the local jewelry store to buy my first watch and looking at my newfound treasure the whole time on the way home. Everybody has a story to share about his or her watch and today I wanted to share the story of an iconic piece with an incredible story.
Do you have a watch related story to like to share with me? I would love to hear it, so please get in touch.
Laurent Martinez ✦ Laurent Fine Watches ✦
Tel: (1) 203 863-9168 | Cell: (1) 203 561-2763