I am going to share a little bit about my experience in collecting and would love to hear if any of you have traveled down a similar or opposite path. I am very analytical by nature, so when the watch I think will be my last purchase for many years arrived this week it naturally caused me to reflect on the process that got me to where I am. I have purchased many watches in the past couple of years and have now consolidated down to 4. I am considering moving 1 more out in the coming weeks and ending up with three.
As I took the first picture of the Pelagos, Aqua Terra, and SMPc yesterday I was struck by how truly unbalanced my collection was. Like many on WUS I have spent hours probably days actually looking at posts about peoples dream collections, best collections under $10,000, best 3 watch collection, perfect 4 watch collection etc. All the while, I was plotting what my perfect collection would be. I was pulled between having a pretty narrow stylistic preference in watches and feeling like I was suppose to add a dress watch, chronograph, GMT, etc. to diversify the collection. Dipping into these waters a bit I realized that having a more well rounded collection didn't make me as happy as having individual watches that I truly enjoyed.
The turning point came for me last year when I brought 4 watches on a 3 day trip to Las Vegas. Deciding that was ridiculous, I implemented my own "Vegas Rule." What I decided is that I would no longer buy a watch if I didn't think I would be happy if it was the only watch I brought with me on a trip to Las Vegas. We do Vegas trip a couple of times a year and it is the closest I get to the James Bond lifestyle. It is a place where I may be by the pool, hike, be in a race car, gamble in jeans and a t-shirt, or put on a suit for dinner and a night out.
In essence, this rule changed me from buying watches that filled gaps when they were next to the other watches in the winder, to buying watches that I truly love wearing in a variety of situations. It also had the practical results of reducing the size and increasing the quality of my collection. It created a collection that fit my own definition of GADA watches. I can now acknowledge that while a JLC Ultra Thin, Speedmaster, and any other number of models would create a more balanced collection, I don't like them as much as the narrow range I have bought. I have decided to have watches I love and can do anything with instead of building a collection without gaps.
So where do you fall on this . . . do you buy the watches you want regardless of how it fits with your collection? Do you enjoy a wide enough range of styles that there is no difference between buying the watches you love and building a balanced collection? Have you ever bought a watch that wasn't the one you wanted most because it worked better with your collection? If so, did it stay in your collection long term? Have you ever had a collection that was so similar in style that it caused you issues? I would love to hear your experiences!
Also, just because a post needs pictures. Here are the four I currently have, and the three I am contemplating ending up with.