There is a famous quote by Geoffrey Chaucer that says “Time and tide wait for no man”. It is my opinion that if you cannot stop the passing of time then you might as well have something nice on your arm to watch it go by.
Bar my wedding ring, the only other piece of jewellery I wear is my watch. The watches I currently own have a lot of sentimental meaning, the first was given to me on leaving a previous job and the second as a gift from Avril before our wedding. Both of these, through years of constant use were starting to show signs of wear and tear, so when asked for our wedding anniversary recently what gift I would like I suggested a watch.
I am quite a simple man in terms of the style of watches I like. I do not like anything big, brash and flashy. I also did not want Avril to spend too much money on me as you know she is currently battling illness and is not earning a wage. On a rare shopping trip in town, we had a look in numerous high-street jewellery shops but nothing grabbed my attention or screamed buy me. The two watches I have are Seiko so I was looking for something a bit different. Later that day, whilst browsing the receptacle of knowledge that is Boards.ie, I had a glance in the watches and timepieces sub-forum for some inspiration. Members were discussing a relatively new brand of watch from France from a designer called William L 1985 which had recently just finished a Kickstarter. On browsing the website and seeing the particular style of watches, I knew I wanted one for myself.
The owner of the company, Guillaume Laidet got the inspiration for his range of watches from one he received from his great-grand uncle. This was an unbranded chronograph watch from the 1950’s but had so much sentimental meaning he got it restored. It was the centre of many compliments and following numerous years working in a variety of high-end watch manufacturers he decided to bring out his own range of affordable high quality watches. The design inspired by the chronograph from the 1950’s with tachymeter scale, telemeter, hand applied indexes and double domed glass.
After much indecisiveness over which beautiful watch I wanted (so many to choose from) I decided on a vintage stainless steel chronograph with a black dial, silver hardware and silver mesh band at a cost of 189 euro. This also included free shipping. It arrived within a couple of days and I opened it with all the excitement of a kid at Christmas. Inside the carton was a simple white cardboard box adorned with the inscription William L 1985. On removing the lid, expecting to see the watch I was surprised to see a beautiful zipped leather watch case in which the watch sat. I thought this was a wonderful touch. I easily adjusted the size of the mesh strap (no removing links here) and put the watch on my wrist. I was very impressed with how stylish and elegant it looked. The 40mm case size really suited my wrist. The width of each lug being 20mm. Although I ordered it in black, I received a deep navy coloured dial by mistake. Being honest I actually prefer the navy version. The watch itself feels solid, is water-resistant to 50 meters and is made with good quality parts. I think the size and shape is very well-balanced. The movement itself being Japanese myota quartz. A little known fun fact, I wear my watch on my right arm. When I was a young child I was never told which arm to wear a watch on and assumed that since I was right-handed it must go on the right! I got so used to wearing it that way that I continued to do so.
Any time I wear this watch I receive many a compliment. The father-in-law upon trying it on, also fell in love with it. He was so impressed he wanted to invest in one himself albeit a slightly different version. His birthday was in August so myself and Avril surprised him with one. We choose a vintage style calendar watch with a white dial, silver hardware and silver mesh band priced at 159 euro. This classic polished stainless steel 40 mm cased watch contained a Seiko VXJ9 movement. It has three dials indicating the day, time and date and is water-resistant to 50 meters. This watch was equally as elegant and stylish as my own and the father-in-law absolutely loved it.
With Christmas rearing its ever looming head once again, people have already starting their gift shopping. If you are looking for inspiration for the man in your life, I would highly recommend a William L 1985 watch. Each watch is expertly made and is fantastic value for money. Guillaume himself is also very pleasant and accommodating. The fact that these beautiful watches are not stocked in any jewellery shop in Ireland also make them that extra bit special as you know not everybody will be wearing one. For further information or to view the collection pop over to www.williaml1985.com