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8787 North Scottsdale Road Suite 116
Scottsdale, AZ, 85253
United States

480-607-4444

Elegant shop offering house-designed, one-of-a-kind gemstone and diamond jewelry, plus timepieces.

Blog

Oliver's watch and jewlery blog with the latest news and thoughts on the happenings in the industry, new products and more. 

Filtering by Category: Watch Words

Watch Words May 2018

Nikki Ollive

Hello fellow watch lovers and welcome to the latest installment of Watch Words!

In this installment we are introducing the new Polaris collection from Jaeger-LeCoultre! The watches have landed in store, and if you were enchanted by this vintage homage in photos, prepare to have your heart stolen when you see these in person. The styling is reminiscent of vintage Jaeger models but with a modern flair. This is exemplified in the alternating brushed and grained finishes given to the rotating inner bezel and dial. A truly stunning detail. A standout in the lineup, the Polaris Memovox is a beautiful modern rendition of a classic dive watch. The angled indices are now an applied affair, finished in a perfect (you know what I mean) faux patina luminescence. These 50th anniversary tribute pieces are a perfect sport extension to the JLC lineup. Think less aggressive Master Compressor meets Master Control. This is a wonderfully restrained and beautiful watch, which will fit perfectly in any collection. I can't wait for you all to see it!

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Sincerely,

George Reid

 

Watch Words December 2017

Nikki Ollive

Watch Words  - December 2017 
 

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IWC Mark XVIII Heritage

We are happy to welcome to Oliver Smith the newest Pilot's watch design from the quintessential maker of pilot's watches, IWC. The Mark XVIII Heritage is the latest of several designs by IWC paying homage to their history as a military watch manufacturer. The 'faux vintage' trend has spread across several brands, and has received polarized reactions. I find myself always drawn to vintage, and many vintage styled pieces; but many ask why pay more for a vintage looking watch when you can have a vintage watch for less? They criticize poorly  executed 'vintage' design elements that come across as kitsch or almost cartoony. For those who are skeptical of vintage styled watches, the Mark XIII will be the watch that changes your mind. Unlike some of the competitors, which create a vintage look with faux bleached dials or forced patinas, IWC gives this watch a 'like new' vintage feel. The dial is the same black seen on other watches in their collection, but the lume is switched from a bright white to a beige color.  This lume in conjunction with the blued steel hands is a sight to behold!  The case itself has also been modernized. It is rendered in a sandblasted titanium, which in combination with the dial elements, serves to give a similar visual to the patina; without feeling dirty or forced. For me, this watch is in perfect balance. A great size, and  a look that brings a vintage feeling without feeling like a prop from a B-movie! Oh, and at a great price point of $4,150.

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Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Control Chronograph Sector

Continuing with my obsession for pieces that have a vintage flair, we have the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Control Chronograph Sector Dial. Jaeger, as with everything they do, has taken a much more reserved approach to creating a vintage styled watch. They brought back a sector style dial layout for it's Master Control series. The sector dial refers to the very precise sets of markings on the dial of the watch that break time out into 'sectors.' This dial style has roots in military officer's watches and was popular for scientific use due to its precise legibility. This watch is truly stunning on the wrist. The high polished case contrast beautifully with the silvered, multi-finish dial. The dial's finishes combine to give a depth to the dial, while the tachymeter scale and blued steel hands add the perfect pop of color. Blue has been a popular color for watches the past few years, and this combination manages to make this watch feel like a 'blue watch' without having a blue dial. While not heavily advertised, this year marks the 25th anniversary of the Master Control collection, and the Master Control Chronograph Sector, as well as two other sector dial pieces, will only see a one year production.

 

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A. Lange & Söhne Datograph

The newest brand here at Oliver Smith, and a personal favorite, we are proud to be carrying  A. Lange & Söhne. For those who don't know, this Germany brand is known for its functional beauty and movement finishing that rivals the finest timepieces on the planet! One of the jewels of the collection is the Datograph, a watch whose movement has been called "The best finished, serially produced, chronograph in the world!" by none other than Philippe Dufour (maybe the greatest living watchmaker on the planet -next to our own Ben Lam of course!).  The beauty, functionality and rarity of this piece are hard to quantify.  We have the piece on hand.  Please stop in when you can and get the live show on this one.  It's worth the trip!

 

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Estate Oliver Smith Edition Chopard

Last but certainly not least we currently have, gracing the estate case, a very special piece to all of us at Oliver Smith Jeweler. In celebration of the 30th anniversary of Oliver Smith Jeweler, Oliver partnered with Chopard to create a special watch, available in a very Limited Edition of 30 pieces. The Mille Miglia GT XL Chronograph base design was reimagined in Oliver's signature silver (or in this case stainless steel) and brown accents. This piece features handsome rose gold detailing on the chronograph registers  and his OSJ logo on the exhibition caseback. To help bring this watch to life Chopard shut down all other production to focus on these 30 watches. This watch sold out quickly, and this is the first time we have seen one come up on the estate market. This is a rare opportunity to get ahold of an amazing design in a very limited edition from a great watch brand.

   That's it for now from Oliver Smith's world of watches.  On a personal note, thank you to everyone who helped make my first six months here at OSJ, some of the best in my 30 year (yikes!) career!  For myself and the whole Oliver Smith family, I would like to wish you all a very safe and happy holiday season, and look forward to seeing you soon!

Sincerely,

George Reid

Watch Words September 2017

Nikki Ollive

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     My name is George Reid and I'm the "New Guy" here at Oliver Smith Jeweler.  For those who do not know me I have been in the watch industry for over ten years with the majority of those years as the CPO ( Certified Pre Owned) Manager for Tourneau.  I have been a passionate watch collector for as long as I can remember.  Oliver was kind enough to give me a new home to ply my trade and to continue my education as a watch enthusiast.  But enough introductions, it's time for me to tell you about some of the new pieces here at Oliver Smith Jeweler.

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The first watch I would like to introduce to you is the Jaeger LeCoultre Ultra-Thin Date, a personal favorite of mine, and the first watch I had to add to my collection after coming to Oliver Smith. The case on this watch is a mere 7.45mm thin. For comparison the ETA/ Valjoux 7750 movement, one of the most popular chronograph movements by ETA, without any casing is 7.9mm thick. The proportions of the Ultra-Thin Date are balanced with slightly short lugs and curved spring bars, which allow it to fit perfectly under a shirt cuff. Of course, this timepiece affords the watchmaking prowess of the maison a chance to shine; this watch boasts a sapphire caseback which allows the intricacies of the caliber 899 movement to be admired. All this for just $7,500 makes this one of the best value propositions in the industry.

Continuing today's theme of slim watches is the Slim D'Hermes. Typically Hermes is not a brand that floods the mind with images of carefully crafted movements, but I believe this watch could change that. Hermes has been working hard to overhaul their watchmaking division; in 2006 they purchased 25% of the prominent Manufacture Vaucher Fluerier. Since then the brand has gained praise, awards and critical acclaim for their new movements, especially those within the Slim D'Hermes line. This particular model uses a micro-rotor to help cut down on the size of its automatic movement, leaving it only 2.6mm thick. In proper Hermes fashion, every element of this design has been meticulously considered and executed. To help set apart what could otherwise be a very simplistic dial, the numbers and subdial have been split onto separate levels with elegant brushed finishes. My favorite detail of this watch is the custom font used on the dial, designed specifically for this line by famed French graphic designer Philippe Apeloig! This unique font paired with the smooth lines of the case paired give this watch a look that is at once both retro and modern. The Hermes Slim D'Hermes retails for $7,650.

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Now, on to the next big (slim) thing from Panerai: the Luminor Due!  The 45mm case of the PAM00674 comes in at a positively svelte (for Panerai) 10.7mm thick. The Luminor Due ushers in a new age for the brand, and is easily 40% slimmer than any other piece Panerai has done.  But lest you think the movement had to be sacrificed to slim down the profile, this watch features a fully in-house, automatic, p.4000 movement with a 3 day power reserve. The 674 retains all the presence and masculine lines of its predecessors, yet slips under a cuff like no Panerai before it. Finishing off this amazing watch is a dial that has to be seen to be truly appreciated. The fine grain sunburst finish makes the color shift between shades of light gray, anthracite and black, depending on how the light hits the dial. All this and it's a traditional sandwich dial to boot!  This new, modern Panerai retails at $10,500.

Thank you all for taking the time to read Watch Words.  All of the watches discussed are available here at Oliver Smith Jeweler.  Please stop in, say hello, and talk some watches!

Watch Words September 2016

Nikki Ollive

It has been a big year so far for Panerai, with many exciting new models joining the collection and the upcoming release of the new Luminor Due case.
One of the standouts in this great lineup of new pieces is the PAM00658, a Luminor 1940 model with a dial featuring relief stripes, often called a 'tuxedo dial' by the Paneristi community. Textured dials are already a rarity in the Panerai collection, there are a few pieces that have used carbon fiber and a Paris Hobnail pattern, but the 'Tuxedo' dial is an exceptional piece even among these. Prior to the 658, the only watch in the collection to use this dial was the PAM00029, which saw production in the A and B series (1998 and 1999 respectively) with a limited edition as part of the M series in 2010

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Watch Words Spring 2016

Nikki Ollive

The king has returned! One of the most sought after pieces of the Richard Mille line, the RM011 titanium fly back chronograph Felipe Massa, now graces the case at Oliver Smith Jeweler. This timepiece exemplifies everything that sets a Richard Mille watch apart from other luxury brands as well as refines elements from the RM004 and RM008. 

The iconic tonneau shaped case rendered in grade 5 titanium was enlarged to make room for the automatic movement with variable rotor geometry. The ability to make adjustments to the rotor allows for the movement's winding to be adjusted for the lifestyle of the wearer. Another notable difference in the RM011 from its predecessors is the enlarged and ribbed pushers for the chronograph mechanism. Not only do these refine the silhouette of the watch, they make the pushers easier to use. 

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Watch Words - SIHH RECAP

Morganne Stewart

The end of January is an important time in the world of watches: the eyes of the horological community turn to SIHH, Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, to see the latest releases and from the world’s most prestigious watch brands. Naturally Oliver himself never misses an opportunity to view these highly anticipated pieces with his own eyes, and to do a little skiing in the Swiss Alps while he’s at it. This year’s show did not disappoint, and was full of absolutely amazing timepieces that we can’t wait to share with you, or to have in our store in the coming year.

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