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How To Buy Vintage Watches: Knightsbridge In London Explains

The trend of buying vintage watches has exploded in recent years with record prices realized for many vintage pieces. Yet buying and collecting vintage watches can be intimidating to novices. Rolex especially, has performed very well, and really it's quite easy to hazard a guess as to why this has been the case.

As more people start to appreciate the mechanical watch (again), every avenue to indulge in horological passions are explored for profit and pleasure. The vintage watch easily makes a case for itself as a worthwhile pursuit all on its own, given the history that is involved, and how so many vintage pieces are the ancestors of modern watches we know and love today. Not to mention (and perhaps even less and less and interest grows) that vintage watches are for the most part much less expensive that new ones.

Compared to buying brand new, there is also the advantage of many times getting a good deal on an equivalent piece that is older. Not taking into account of course, specialty or rare pieces that can be valued at ludicrous prices.

I first got to know about Watches of Knightsbridge at the 2012 Salon QP in London where they were showing some of the vintage pieces on offer for the coming auction. While London is an important global city, compared to many places in Asia, there are comparatively fewer outlets to see and buy luxury watches in the UK. This is why I was surprised to find this new auction house offering quite a diverse range of vintage pieces that encompass all price ranges from low to high, and all types of pieces that in the words of director and founder Tobey Sutton, "have at least some horological significance." We've actually seen a surge of newer watch auction houses in the UK such as Knightsbridge of London and Fellows, that in addition to higher-end pieces, also aim to service a more entry-level vintage watch buyer.

This explains why you can find things like a £60 Seiko within the catalogue which as Tobey admitted was not something you'd normally find in an auction catalogue. As he explains. "Seiko is a respected brand for mechanical watches and that means we include Seikos in the auction, also we don't want to limit our offerings to purely high-priced items, we want our catalogue to reflect what a watch-lover would like, whether expensive or not."

How To Buy Vintage Watches: Knightsbridge In London Explains   watch buying sales auctions How To Buy Vintage Watches: Knightsbridge In London Explains   watch buying sales auctions
Christie's London The Ravenborg Collection of Rolex Watches, London, 30 September 1997
Book (Christie's London)

Go buy a gold chain in a jewelry store..

by ballahack

Then try to sell it at a profit later. Good luck with that. Unless it is a collectable piece or an antique you will lose because of the dealer spread. There is a huge difference between the price a jewelry dealer's selling price and buying price for the same item. Jewelry dealers typically have a 400% markup.
If jewelry is an investment why do you see it in pawn shops.
Co-workers tell me the same thing about Rolex watches. Good luck with that too.

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