TH Baker boss reveals the Christmas crackers to watch.
As the days begin to shorten and time becomes increasingly of the essence, TH Baker and Watch Hut managing director Andrew Higgs reveals the watches that will be warming hearts this winter.
“With winter on its way, the time has come to take a look at the watches set to fly off shelves this season. As the UK’s leading watch website, the Watch Hut cover a huge range of brands and a large part of the job involves exploring the brands and models that will come to define the autumn/winter collection.
Tissot is a firm favourite this season, with certain models in particular earmarked to win hearts, minds and – of course – wrists. As the world leader in the traditional Swiss watch market, Tissot has watchmaking down to a fine art and continues to surprise and delight audiences with new and exciting designs after 150 years of innovation. Destined to do big business this year is the Tissot PRS516, an automatic watch for gents that delivers in terms of style and substance; its quality movement is matched only by a sharp and sleek design, making it the perfect gift for Dad or hubby come Christmas time.
Other Tissot watches predicted to sell well this year include an elegant ladies dress watch, the Tissot Lovely T058.009.11.051.00. With new models due to join the already popular Tissot V8 collection, Tissot also appears to have cornered the Christmas market in high quality chronographs.
From the best in quality Swiss craftmanship to Italian fashion excellence. Emporio Armani watches display the exquisite styling and fashionable flair one would expect from Giorgio Armani’s designer label. Highlighted as future bestsellers are the watches that make up the Emporio Armani Ceramica range, a series of ladies and gents models featuring fine ceramic bracelets. This distinguishing feature offers a luxurious alternative to the more frequent use of stainless steel. Make it a white Christmas with the much-hyped white models (including the brand new AR1408), available with both round and rectangular dials to make them even more appealing and accessible.
Colour watches have proved immensely popular this year, and there is no reason to expect this trend to change over the coming winter months. Ice Watch in particular has won devotees around the world and is expected to continue its reign as the colour watch supreme this Christmas. The brand, which is still evolving after establishing itself in just 2007, bases its fresh designs around the descending tones of the chromatic line; this concept results in a wide variety of colour options so the darker colours of a winter wardrobe can be broken up with a red, yellow or blue flash of the wrist. Ice Watch commonly features silicone straps, allowing for both comfort and affordability, and its innovative aesthetic qualities make for an original approach to timekeeping.
DKNY excels when it comes to all things stylish, sassy and urbane, and its range of fashion watches is no exception. Watches by Donna Karen provide ladies and gents with both a classy, functioning timepiece and a brand new wrist accessory. DKNY watches to look out for this autumn/winter include a stunning new range of stone-set bracelet watches that add their own unique spin to this classic dress formula by adding some colour: those who choose the NY8047 will catch the eye with a bracelet set with dazzling blue stones, while those wearing the NY8048 would have opted for equally impressive red stones. More options will become available, ensuring the spirit of New York fashion will sparkle this winter in cities worldwide.
Continuing the theme of colourful, stone-set fashion watches, the Guess Prism range is expected to continue its remarkable run following its success this summer. These watches, recognised by their sparkling bezels, have been a big hit due to a consistently bold nature that still allows for variation – witness the difference between the deep blue resin model W13564L6 and the gold steel bracelet watch 16540L1. One of the leading fashion brands from the US, Guess is set to unveil new and exciting watch models in the coming months but the Guess Prism selection will undoubtedly remain a fixture in the fashion watch stakes.
Another collection of fashion watches that goes from strength to strength is Michael Kors, with the designer’s hip and fashionable output increasingly recognised as THE name to wear. As Kors himself once again takes to the judging panel on hit American fashion-centric show ‘Project Runway’, the brand’s profile looks set to rise even further and so Michael Kors watches are expected to make a big impact in the next few months. Often associated with the exotic jet-set lifestyle, Michael Kors watches will provide some fashion escapism as the cold nights draw in. Trends include ladies gold tone steel bracelets and dark, edgy timepieces for gents, all of which combine classicism and contemporary cool to result in modern watches that will continue to impress well into 2011 as new trends become apparent.
A trend that also seems to be enduring is the current, overwhelming demand for charm bracelets. British favourite Accurist has cannily created its own niche by combining the ever-popular charm bracelet template with its own specialist product: watches. Accurist Charmed watches allow any fashion-conscious lady to build her own piece of jewellery, adding charms and beads to each rope-style bracelet until a unique, fully realised combination is achieved. However, at the centre of the bracelet remains a simple yet stylish watch dial, so the need for a separate wrist watch is removed. Sure to be an attractive proposition for many women this year, as charms from Pandora and Thomas Sabo continue to peak in popularity, Accurist Charmed watches are a new breed of watch to satisfy a different type of fashion urge. Look out for models LB1401 and LB1402, which provide a startling starting point for every girl’s charming new collection.
Another surefire hit in the female watch market is Seksy watches, Sekonda’s brand of woman’s own dress watches. Following a successful marketing campaign last November and December, which saw a number of its watches promoted on hit primetime ITV shows, Seksy swiftly entered the conscience of the gift-buying public and shifted huge numbers last year. It looks set to repeat the same trick this year, as its sensual and sparkling timepieces are primed once again to capture the imagination of women during the party season. Considering the fact that they are also available at very accessible prices, Seksy watches are set to shine this winter. Another thing to keep in mind is that Sekonda, manufacturer of Seksy watches, is also set to release its own variant on the charm bracelet watch, the Sekonda Silver Sunray Dial Charm Chain Bracelet Ladies Watch 8559.
While many of the watches perceived as upcoming bestsellers this season are female watches, a longstanding male classic is also set to work its magic once again. Like the Seksy series, the D&G Medicine Man collection was one of last year’s surprise sellers, met with increasingly phenomenal demand. It was so popular in fact that the original steel bracelet model, D&G Medicine Man DW0197, was soon joined by two leather strap versions: the white strap DW0513 and the black strap DW0514. The watch dial takes the old television test card pattern and transforms it into a unique design, resulting in a truly original collection of watches.
A final collection sure to impress in winter 2010 is the new Citizen Red Arrows series. Citizen is currently the world’s largest watch maker, and one of its most technologically advanced. The brand new collection is in collaboration with the Royal Air Force Red Arrows, and will be available to buy from October. Retailing between £189 and £390, the timepieces were unveiled at the Company of Master Jewellers buyers meeting in July and announced as UK only special editions. The Red Arrow branded watches add fine detail to existing Citizen favourites, with inclusions ranging from subtle red stitching to the bold addition of branding on dials and Red Arrows livery on the case back. Boasting dual time and radio-controlled technology, these chronograph watches benefit from Citizen’s solar powered Eco Drive technology, meaning they will never need to rely on a battery.
Although the shortlisted watch models above are those expected to perform extremely well in the coming months, there are sure to be many new and wonderful timepieces set to cause a stir in the run-up to Christmas and we could easily be gifted with a surprise hit. So, watch out.”
Those interested in keeping an eye on the latest watches available this season can visit the UK’s largest online watch retailer Watch Hut at: http://www.thewatchhut.co.uk/?gclid=COy35pOvtqMCFYGX2Aodgyhvdw