Dear Fellow Watch Enthusiasts,
I did what I never thought I would do (after reading the Watchuseek Forums): I purchased a Bremont ALT1-C Classic.
The lesson I learned is that sometimes when you actually try out a watch rather than just accepting others' opinions, you may discover that a watch about which you never before thought twice possesses the magical synergy that ticks all of your boxes. Of course, I realize YMMV.
I'm the type of gal who purchases only one or two mid-luxury watches a year, but who examines hundreds of watches a year to find those two. I vowed "never" to buy "tool watches." I thought, "I'm a chick--I like pretty, shiny movements, good-sized watches that my old eyes can read, interesting complications, and shiny cases." I also thought, "what would I care about hardened steel and anti-shock properties, I'm not a Navy Seal, and I do the dishes with my Swatch Sistem51--vickers, tegimented, whatever?!!"
I thought Bremont was all marketing hype and that there could never be such an item as a "luxury tool watch." My brain told me, "I will never pony up more than $1.5K for a watch with an ETA-based movement or buy a watch that Ronnie Wood (bless him) adores."
After I tried out many Bremont watches at Little Treasury Jewelers (a very fine AD in Gambrills, MD) and tortured the owner and several of his staff with my impertinent questions about the brand, I ate my own words. Sometimes, you just happen to find a particular watch and watch brand where the design, materials, execution, and people behind the brand work in a synergistic that makes you see a value proposition you could not before have understood. This watch made me dream about it, instead of my usual pining over a JLC Duometre Chronographe (that I will need somebody else to buy for me...any volunteers?).
Yesterday, I enjoyed an opportunity to meet and grill Michael Pearson, the North American Director for Bremont, and I can say that I have a really good feeling about Bremont's and my AD's customer service abilities--way more so than for the relatively high proportion of German watch brands that I own (you know who you are and you owe me swag for taking months to remove that lint on my rotor). I also met a number of fortunate individuals who are able to collect Bremont watches, and they are most definitely not the "a fool and his money are easily parted" types of people. I believe they have an abiding love for history that is, literally, built into the watch. FYI, Bremont watches can soon be serviced in the USA in NYC at their flagship boutique that will open early in 2015.
I've tried to attach a pic of my new baby sitting on a Van Gogh "Wheatfields" mousepad.
I dig the lugs, multilayered construction, and modern, yet classic, dial with the ever so slightly convex crystal with tons of AR coating on the underside a bit of lume for good measure. It feels good on my peasant-sized wrist, and I like that it says "London" on the dial for something a little bit different, that I can tell the time with it with my bad old eyes, that I can rock out playing by new vintage 80's shredder bass without having to reset my watch to my atomic clock, and that I can occasionally inadvertently smack some drywall with the watch without me going into cardiac arrest.
Thank you for permitting me to share my thoughts, and may you be able to buy a watch you dream about!