Sunday, August 5, 2018

Pocket Watch, Pocket Clock - Exclusive!

     I have struggled since I started to participate in reenacting/ living history with finding a watch that truly represents an original - without having to spend the dollar, Washington's, Lincoln's, Benjamins, Hamilton's for an original.  Now that doesn't mean that I haven't purchased an original - I recently did go for a gold watch on Ebay (which was a splurge) it is also French and goes with my original French watch equipage.  So how in the world could I resist the quest of offering them in my shop?  

Personification of May, 1745 by Thomas Burford (watch on her watch chain - and look at those bows on her pearl earrings!  I have reproduced those in my shop)

    Over the past few years, many come into my shop at events or asked if I sold watches since I make and/or offer watch chains and strings - but I did not want to offer anything that didn't really look as if it was something I, or my friend Kerry (an admitted Fusee watchaholic), would wear.  So I "didn't go there" so to speak as when I looked at pocket watches out there they just weren't right IMHO to give the illusion of having a real one on.  So, I consulted Kerry on this project to get the right size, weight, and face on my quest for the right one to offer to my clients (and for me to wear)!

Historical Hottie - Elijah Boardman by Ralph Earl, 1789 (watch chain)

     Exploring the possibility of offering these, I started to look for a company that could make what I wanted.  I also found a website on how to identify your original watch which I think is awesome, and I always refer to the book by Genevieve Cummins, How the Watch was Worn, of which I own a copy.  I have contacted her and purchased an original cut steel watch chain that was in her book that I hope to reproduce next year.  I also did a little light reading on the history of watches and the watch industry in England - France also had wonderful watches (my gold one is French).  But I digress.  

     I tend to be an overachiever, and when I get determined to do something that I really want to do, I am a little obsessed to get it done.  However, it wasn't something I really had to do - but didn't I?  So many watches out there that aren't quite right, but seem to be "good enough" at a fairly decent price.  I have written about watch chains, strings, equipages/chatelaines in other blog posts here, here, and here.

     So, mine isn't perfect by any means, but it is better than anything else out there (that I know of - I don't know everything).  The photos are of my samples, and I will offer these in brass and silver.

Brass watch with reproduction face

     Now, I did have to make a few concessions on mine - they are battery operated (the stem looks like it is a wind-up but it allows you to turn on and off and set the watch).  Maybe one day I can make a key wound version.

On my wool blue gown made by The Silly Sisters - in silver

     The back twists off counter-clockwise, and the watch battery can be replaced with the Sony SWSR626SW, Duracell 377, Energizer 377, or Seiko SB-AW.  

Back of watch with lid off!

     These are currently open for pre-order at $30 until 19 August 2018.  Then the retail price will be $40 each.

The silver shown with my original Victorian revival watch chain, original 18th century seal, and antique horse leg key!

     You can order them from my Etsy shop!  These are an exciting item and exclusive to me.  They are limited in number, and future offerings may have a different face!

Michael Halbert - the maker of the watch strings that I offer - 
wearing a string with his Regency suit - his watch would be in a watch pocket

Original watch in silver - the inspiration for the face on my reproduction watch