The rise of the internet, and the consequent evolution of the watch-watching community, has inevitably amplified the phenomenon whereby certain objects have come to exert an extraordinary hold over the collective imagination. Here, Colin Alexander Smith debunks three watch myths circulating widely and freely online and in print concerning former French president Nicolas Sarkozy’s Rolex and Patek Philippe, the Khanjar Rolex Sea-Dwellers, and what in fact Sir Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay were wearing on their wrists as they summited Mount Everest.
Why is it that watch brands celebrate watch anniversaries so enthusiastically? The answer isn’t as complicated as you might think . . . here we illustrate the answer with some major brands like Rolex, Patek Philippe, Cartier, Chanel, and Omega, who celebrated some major watch anniversaries back in 2017.
Silicon, long in use as a material in the electronics industry, has many advantages for mechanical watchmaking: it is 60 percent harder and 70 percent lighter than steel; non-magnetic; resistant to corrosion and shock; and generally needs no lubrication. These qualities motivated Patek Philippe to declare in 2005 that, “Silicon is the fabric of the future” and to found its Advanced Research department. Meet all five limited edition Advanced Research pieces released thus far right here.
As read by you, here are the top ten most viewed articles on Quill & Pad in 2020. There are likely to be a few surprises. Drum roll, please: in no particular order, our top ten most viewed articles of 2020 were . . .
From the time GaryG revealed that he’d added a Patek Philippe Reference 5170P chronograph to his collection, he has frequently been asked two questions: how does it compare to his Patek Philippe Reference 5370P split-seconds chronograph and how does it compare to Patek Philippe’s prior flagship chronograph, the platinum-encased Reference 5070P? Find out here!
As most folks who follow Patek Philippe are aware, the brand has long been in the habit of making unique watches for special customers, including in recent times entertainment luminaries such as Eric Clapton and Michael Ovitz. It was not until 2015, however, that Patek Philippe publicly issued a number of small editions of previously discontinued references, each in previously unmade metal/dial combinations. This Patek Philippe Reference 5070J-013 is one of those ultra-rare birds. And GaryG wonders if it might bring yellow gold back into fashion single-handedly, as for him the combination of the yellow gold case and sunburst-brushed brown dial is as gorgeous as it is unexpected.
If there were a watch enthusiasts’ encyclopedia, under “embarrassment of riches” the image might just be a side-by-side shot two of contemporary watchmaking’s great complicated pieces: the “mighty” A. Lange & Söhne Double Split and Patek Philippe’s Reference 5370P split-second chronograph. In this article, GaryG compares and contrasts them to come out with a winner.
After reading article after article discussing the virtues of Patek Philippe’s Nautilus, it became clear to watch enthusiast and Quill & Pad reader Perry Heim that none stated a self-evident truth that appears obvious to him. In this “letter to the editor” Perry explains in detail what he finds so appealing about the Patek Philippe Nautilus Reference 5711. And he stacks the Nautilus up against some serious contemporary contenders.
The Patek Philippe Calatrava Reference 6007A marks a physical and spiritual shift for the brand, and may be one of the most un-Calatrava Calatravas of recent memory. Joshua Munchow takes a look at what makes this model an outlier and also why it simultaneously doesn’t come from left field.
Artist Simon Beck has created an enormous 170 x 100-meter drawing of a Patek Philippe Nautilus in the sands of Britain’s seven-mile-long Brean beach. That awe-inspiring thought alone was enough reason for Elizabeth Doerr to take a closer look.