Navitimer 1884: Heart of a Champion

Navitimer 1884

These days, your eyes can be deceiving. At first glance, the Breitling Navitimer 1884 is just another Navitimer. In fact, a quick look might have you mistake this watch for the 01 Blacksteel or Stratos Gray variants. Another look might show the subdials at 12, 9 and 6 o’clock; telling you that it’s related to the less expensive Navitimer World and not one of the 01’s with their in-house movements.

However, upon closer inspection, the 1884 will yield plenty of surprises beyond its use of an off-the-shelf ETA Valjoux 7751 movement. Called the Breitling B21, the base movement might be common, but what a movement it is! Not only is this watch a Certified Chronometer (like all Breitlings), but features a slew of complications that simply aren’t found on most other timepieces.

Navitimer 1884

The Navitimer 1884 features an incredible amount of complications not seen on a Navi since the Navitimer 1461

Complications Galore

What do we mean by that? Well, the 1884 features not only the standard Navitimer chronograph and slide rule, but also Day, Date, Month & 24-Hour complications. The 24-hour clock is the subdial at 9 o’clock; the day and month are in the 12 o’clock subdial and the date is denoted by the crescent moon.

If you love complications, then this is the Navitimer to get over even the 01 variants. Minus a moonphase, this watch is one of the most sophisticated watches in the Breitling lineup and we might eve get this over the brand new 46 mm Navitimer 01. Why? Well, barring a leap-year, you won’t have to set this watch for three years if you keep it charged. Plus, this watch’s production is Limited to 1,884 (get it?) pieces worldwide with each piece numbered on the back of the case to commemorate Breitling’s founding in 1884.

Close to, but not perfect

We found that one of the most difficult aspects to get used to on the watch is the crescent moon date as well as the use of a separate tool to set the day function. While this practice is standard operating procedure on Swiss watches with complications beyond GMTs and chronographs, it is a bit of a pain to fish out a separate tool to set the day-date – and can be a bigger hassle if you have a multi-watch rotation or if you’re afraid that you’re going to lose the tool.

It’s 46 mm, but due to the shorter hands, wears somewhat larger than its brethren. Thanks to its black dial and short hands, it creates an optical illusion that makes the watch look more like the 48 mm Navitimer 01 GMT than the 46 mm Navitimer World that it shares a movement and measurement with.

This watch is truly one-of-a-kind – not only in the Breitling lineup, but in the Swiss watch world in general. While we got to wear it in the crocodile strap variants, the watch is also available with a rubber strap and Navitimer steel bracelet. Regardless of what you choose, this watch would be a welcome addition to any collector’s watch box – but you better hurry up, because given the limited production, there won’t be many left. But, lucky for you, we actually have in stock.

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Traci’s Fashion Tips: 2017 Academy Awards Jewelry Fashion Takeaways

Traci's Fashion Tips

While the 2017 Grammy Awards treated us to some of the best fashion of the year, it’s the Academy Awards that are known for fashion. This year was no different. Closer to home, I’ve found several shimmering original Burdeen’s Jewelry pieces that can be paired with similar fashion choices as the stars – and you won’t even have to fly out to Beverly Hills.

Check out some of our pieces of the rich and famous and remember to call me or email me at Or, if you want a more personal touch, we can set up a boutique experience at Burdeen’s Jewelry.

Let me help you make your Jewelry Wishes Come True!


–Traci Capp



Darby’s choice of hot torquoise jewelry perfectly matched her blue eyes and would also pair for Spring and Summer jeans, dresses and any white fashion choices – whether it’s a dress, shirt, whatever!

Darby Stanchfield

Darby’s jewelry choices included a hot turquoise & diamond



Yellow Gold is so majestic when paired with the right dress – just like with Emma Stone’s choice to pair her Long Yellow Gold Earrings with her champagne colored dress. Movie icon Nicole Kidman also pulled off a similar look, but thanks to their similar fair skin tones, they both looked spectacular for the Academy Awards.

Emma Stone - Steve Granitz Wire Image

Emma Stone paired yellow gold earrings with a nude/champagne colored dress like Nicole Kidman



After the Oscars, many fashionistas said that Karlie Kloss actually stole the show thanks to her pairing a Diamond Flower Cluster Choker, Bracelets and Earrings. This classic pairing would have been right at home on the red carpet in 2017…or 1957. Paired with flowing blonde hair and blue eyes, Karlie is a classic Hollywood starlet if I ever saw one!

Karlie Kloss

Karlie Kloss wearing a Diamond Flower Cluster choker, bracelet, earring


Speaking of classic, Kirsten Dunst actually had her dress commissioned from a 1952 Christian Dior Haute Couture dress. Karlie Kloss may have had the looks (and jewelry) to pull off classic Hollywood, but Kirsten had the dress. Kirsten came with some jewelry firepower of her own. 

With a diamond scroll-like flowery necklace and earring as well as diamond earrings, Kirsten showed timeless fashion on the red carpet for the Oscars.

Diamond Scroll-like w/ flowery necklace & earring

Diamond Scroll-like w/ flowery necklace & earring


Emma Stone stole the show with a nude/champagne dress, but it was Omega spokeswoman Nicole Kidman who also wore a champagne dress with pride at the Oscars. While her dress was relatively understated, her jewelry choices were deliberately colorful. With Red/Purple/Pink Long hanging Earrings, she brought attention to her shimmering jewelry and this choice of multi-colored reds/purples was a dramatic contrast with her champagne dress.

Nicole Kidman wore Red/Purple/Pink Long hanging Earrings for the Oscars.

Nicole Kidman wore Red/Purple/Pink Long hanging Earrings for the Oscars.


Diamonds and rubies have long been a stunning jewelry pairing. Ruth Negga tapped into the timeless pairing with her whimsical headband and earring pairing. While we don’t have any ruby headbands currently at Burdeen’s, we do love the pairing of diamonds and rubies as they go with any outfit, any skintone, any time.

Ruth Negga

Rubies & Dia are classic, elegant & timeless


Now, how could we forget Taraji P. Henson? After a moving performance in Hidden Figures, she stunned on the red carpet with her Mesh Diamond Choker paired with an Emerald and Diamond Ring.

Taraji P Henson

Taraji P. Henson – Mesh Diamond Choker with Emerald & Diamond Ring


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IWC tears it up at this year’s Oscars

Why let Traci have all the fun? This year, there was plenty of watch-spotting to do at the Academy Awards and IWC definitely made its presence felt. Thanks to the amount of brands that we carry, many times we carry the exact watches that the men (and women) are wearing on the red carpet.


Damien Chazelle - JLC Master Grande Ultra Thin

Damien Chazelle – Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Grande Ultra Thin

Best Director-Winning Director Damien Chazelle, who won for La La Land, wore a Pink Gold Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Grande Ultra Thin Small Second. At only 14.5 mm thick, this understated piece stands in direct contrast to the deliberately overstated watch choices stars often wear. Rather than choosing a watch with multiple complications, he simply chose the JLC with small seconds and called it a day. We’ve actually had some experience with this watch and carry them with moon complications, day-dates, perpetual calendars, and more.


Dev Patel - IWC Portugieser Automatic

Dev Patel – IWC Portugieser Automatic

Multiple stars on the red carpet jumped on the IWC train. Since at least 2015, Dev Patel has been wearing IWCs and this year was no different. While he didn’t show off his wrist to see the exact model, we would pair Dev with a Portugieser Automatic IW500704. With a black croc strap and a white dial and gold Arabic numerals, this watch would have perfectly set off his cream tuxedo. He’s shown preference to this IWC in the past and it appears from faraway shots that 2017 was no different.

Mahershala Ali - IWC Da Vinci Chronograph

Mahershala Ali – IWC Da Vinci Chronograph


While Mr. Patel looked good with his Portugieser, the most prominent IWC wearer was Oscar winner Mahershala Ali who wore a Da Vinci Chronograph. For once, our floor actually overshot Hollywood!

If Mr. Ali’s limo somehow forgot his watch and needed the perfect pairing for his tux, we would have suggested an IWC Portugieser Perpetual Calendar in blue. With a similar blue face, brushed metal dial and many more complications than Mr. Ali’s actual choice, the Perpetual Calendar is a watch that would put most collectors to shame in any setting – including Hollywood’s most famous Red Carpet.

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Traci’s Fashion Tips: 2017 Grammy Awards Jewelry Fashion Takeaways

Traci's Fashion Tips

At Burdeen’s Jewelry, we are surrounded by the most sumptuous jewelry, every single day! It’s something that we truly love to be around. We sometimes forget how lucky we are! However, when I was watching the 2017 Grammy Awards this past Sunday night, I kept seeing pieces of jewelry on these most famous celebrities, that we actually carry in our store!

We may not be attending big award shows like the Grammy’s, but we all LOVE to wear breathtaking pieces of jewelry with a simple dress, for a special event we may be going to ! And, something to never forget…nothing looks HOTTER, or more fashionable, then putting on stunning pieces of jewelry with skinny jeans, an amazing top, and a pair of boots or high heels.

Enjoy taking a look at some of the pieces that look SO CLOSE to the ones being worn by the famous and rich all over TV, magazines, and the big screen. I would LOVE to help YOU bring these looks to “real life!” Call me or email me at to set up a personal shopping appointment at Burdeen’s Jewelry.

Let’s make your Saturday Night, casual outfit, hotter than ever! I’m looking forward to spending time together!

Warmest Jewelry Wishes,


Traci Capp



Adele with a broach and earrings

Adele with a yellow gold broach and earrings

Jennifer Lopez with Diamond Studs and a Diamond Bracelet

Jennifer Lopez with Diamond Studs and a Diamond Bracelet


Rihanna with Chandelier Earrings and Stacked Diamond Bracelets

Rihanna with Chandelier Earrings and Stacked Diamond Bracelets

Heidi Klum

John Shearer/WireImage – Heidi Klum in a Hoop Earring


John Shearer/WireImage - Carrie Underwood in Hoop Earrings

John Shearer/WireImage – Carrie Underwood in Black Diamond Hoop Earrings


Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP - Demi Lovato

Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP – Demi Lovato in a yellow gold & diamond open teardrop earring

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for NARAS - Skylar Grey with a matching Burdeen's Jewelry Tassel Necklace

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for NARAS – Skylar Grey with a matching Burdeen’s Jewelry Tassel Necklace



Paris Jackson with a pair of Sapphire Earrings

Paris Jackson with a pair of Sliced Ruby Sapphire & Diamond Earrings



Steve Granitz/WireImage - Tori Kelly with Chandelier Earrings

Steve Granitz/WireImage – Tori Kelly with Yellow Gold Chandelier Earrings



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Avenger Hurricane 12-Hour takes a gorgeous watch, makes it legible

Hurricane 12H

Here at Burdeen’s Jewelry, as an Authorized Dealer of several brands, we get the chance to see just about every single special edition watch that comes through Baselworld. It’s enough to make just about any watch enthusiast drool. One of the watches that we’ve been lucky enough to obtain is the Avenger Hurricane – both of ‘em.

What sets the Hurricane apart from other Breitling Avengers, and frankly, the similarly-sized Super Avenger is its case. The Hurricane is made out of a material called Breitlight. It’s a resin that’s six times lighter than stainless steel so even a 50mm watch like the Hurricane feels especially light on the wrist compared to Super Avengers and other Breitlings.

Plus, it’s about as scratch resistant as a black watch will get. Unlike PVD or any other black case, this is no black coating over stainless steel – this thing’s black through and through.

Avenger Hurricane 24, we hardly knew ye 

For all of one week, the Avenger Hurricane 24 graced the Burdeen’s Jewelry Breitling case with its presence. Nevertheless, wth its black dial and yellow accents, this watch was a looker! Thanks to its 24-hour dial, it was anything but ordinary.

When you’re taught how to read an analog watch in elementary school, one of the very first things you’re taught is that 90-degree angles equates to 3, 6, 9 and 12 o’clock. However, with a 24 hour dial, all of that learned behavior is turned on its head.

It’s not all that difficult to get used to, but it is a challenge – especially if you’re a watch collector. Switching between watches daily can be an immense challenge if you glance at a 24-hour watch, where what looks like 3:15 is actually 6:15. It’s disorienting for the first hour or so every time you put on the watch. Still, oh my god, is the Avenger Hurricane 24H a good looking watch! The black on yellow strap accentuates the black Breitlight case perfectly and the understated yellow accents on the dial make it the perfect sporty watch for any situation.

Thanks to its good looks and the buzz surrounding the watch, it was summarily picked up by a lucky Breitling enthusiast.

24H? We don’t need no stinking 24H!

If you love the looks of the Avenger Hurricane, the feel of Breitlight, and the color yellow, we’ve got the Avenger Hurricane 12-Hour right here in Buffalo Grove. Unlike the 24-hour version, the 12H ditches the understated black dial for a full-on yellow dial. Plus, there’s no issue with reading this watch at a glance. Breitling made the decision to drop the 24-hour dial for a traditional 12-hour one and it makes it oh-so-much easier to read at a glance.

While it also ditches yellow strap for an all-black strap, this is a watch that will grab attention. Plus, we foresee that Breitling will limit production on this watch just as much as they have on the 24-hour version. While they know that they have a hit on their hands, they’re certainly not going to dilute it by overproducing the watch.

For more information about the Avenger Hurricane 12H or to test it out for yourself, contact Burdeen’s Jewelry at 800-656-0414.

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A tale of a Rolex, an Endurance Race & a Winner

24 Hours of Daytona

24 Hours of Daytona

So here we sit in Hour Nine of the 2017 24 Hours of Daytona – one of the Premier road races in North America. What sets this race apart is not the face that it’s one of the oldest Road Races in the United States; it’s not that it marks the unofficial beginning of the sports car racing season each and every year, it’s the piece of wrist candy that’s given to the winners of each class.

After 24, yes twenty-four, hours of hard road racing, if you’re lucky enough to stand at the top step of the podium, Rolex will give you a brand new gold and stainless steel Rolex Daytona as part and parcel for winning the Rolex 24. It’s an unbelievable prize that is coveted in most every professional racing circle.

After all, the Venn Diagram between sports car racing enthusiast and Swiss Timepiece enthusiast has way more overlap than the typical ones you drew in Statistics Class. If you meet a sports car owner, be it a Porsche, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Corvette, McLaren, Aston Martin, or any other owner and have them show you his wrist, and chances are, there will be some sort of gorgeous chronograph, be it Breitling, Rolex, IWC, Patek Phillippe or any other well-known Swiss watch brand.

A fable from the Rolex 24 of Daytona

There is one story that was popularized by the racing blog One Hot Lap about a Rolex, a winning race car driver, and the 24 Hours of Daytona.

Back in 2013, in the waning days of the GRAND-AM road racing series, before its unification with the ALMS, NASCAR-owned GRAND-AM had one and only true marquee endurance race – the Rolex 24. While the ALMS featured the fastest, highest-tech Hybrid P1 Prototypes, P2 prototypes that were still faster than the fastest GRAND-AM Daytona Prototypes – all welcome at the 24 Hours LeMans – GRAND-AM still had the 24 Hours of Daytona.

Plus, GRAND-AM had a little-known, and little-cared for alternate fuel racing Class named GX. This class had all of two cars racing in it in 2013 – a SKYACTIV-D Mazda6 which ran diesel and a privateer Porsche Cayman which also ran biodiesel. Despite the thin competition, there is still 24 hours of racing to do.

With an all-but-guaranteed win, a Porsche Cayman, the Napleton Racing team nonetheless pushed through 24 hours of trials and tribulations and beat the Mazda factory team. For their troubles, Dr. Jim Norman and the rest of his teammates were presented stainless steel Rolex Cosmograph Daytona 116520s by none other than then-president of Rolex, Patrick Heiniger.

Rolex 24 Rolex Daytona

Rolex 24 Rolex Daytona from the 2012 24 Hours of Daytona

The next day, he took it to a jeweler near his house to have a link taken. Well, upon hearing such an amazing story, the jeweler was not impressed. According to Dr. Norman’s own story:

A Rolex, a Link, a mistaken identity & a jerk

“The jeweler re-sizes it for me and charges me $8. I say “Wow, 8 bucks, that’s not very much.” The manager lady says, “well, if it were a REAL Rolex we would charge you more!” I chuckle and say “it IS a real Rolex.” She says, “Nope it is not…We know Rolex watches and this is definitely a fake.”

Dr. Norman’s retort: “Well, I guess you don’t know these as well as you think!”

Hearing this, the Jeweler says, “I’ll bet you bought that watch in New York.”

“Nope” Dr. Norman says, “I haven’t been to NYC in some time.”

The jeweler replies, “I’ll bet you $1000 you didn’t buy that from a real Rolex dealer.” Dr. Norman says, “I won’t take that bet, because you are right, I didn’t buy this from a Rolex dealer.”

“AH HA!” the Jeweler exclaims, “It IS a fake!! Where did you get it??”

“I got it in Daytona this past Sunday.” “HA! I am right!” the Jeweler shouts. “I know all the Rolex dealers in Daytona, and none of them are open on Sundays!”

“Maybe I didn’t get it from a dealer,” Dr. Norman smugly states.

The jeweler turns and says, “Well then tell me, who DID you get this ‘Rolex’ from?” “Well, I stated calmly and coolly, I was presented this beautiful timepiece from the President and CEO of Rolex Watches while standing on the podium at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona.”

“OH, Sure!” he says, “And I’m Santa Claus!!”

Sometimes, Santa Claus comes at the end of January. And some jewelers don’t have the best eye for a genuine Rolex Daytona – especially ones with the Rolex 24 inscription on the back.

Here at Burdeen’s Jewelry, we know our racing and we know our Rolexes. Had Dr. Norman shown up in Chicagoland, our horologists would have been drooling over his one-of-a-kind Daytona won at none other than the 24 Hours of Daytona. Congratulations, Dr. Norman and that is one heck of a story! As for this year’s race, it’s turning out to be quite fun.

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Burdeen’s adds Special Edition IWC pieces to inventory after SIHH

If you’re interested in the IWC Big Pilot’s Heritage, IWC Pilot’s Watch Chronograph ‘Le Petit Prince, Pilot’s Watch Mark XVIII Le Petit Prince, or Pilot’s Watch ‘Le Petit Prince’ call us at 800-656-0414. We have them in-stock and ready to deliver.

IWC SIHH pieces

Sometimes, you just can’t help yourself. Our fearless leader, Matt Burdeen flew all the way to Geneva, Switzerland to take in the sights and sounds at Salon International De La Haute Horlogerie, better known as SIHH. What he came back with were some pieces that would truly astound any IWC collector.

As an Authorized Dealer of IWC, we pretty much get to see it all. If you want it for International Watch Company, we can make it happen for you – but sometimes you have to wait for it. In all, we typically carry about 50 IWC pieces in stock and ready to deliver. We try to keep a good selection of Pilots, Portugiesers, Aquatimers, Ingenieurs, etc., on-hand for the astute IWC collector, but like your average McLaren or Ferrari dealership, you just can’t keep every color on-hand.

Explore the Antoine De Saint Exupéry Collection

Well, after SIHH, we made a step to change that with Pilot line this week. Three of the pieces in the Special Edition Antoine De Saint Exupéry will be on-hand and ready to deliver to our customers. All you have to do is call us or show up. Basically, if you love the color blue or have heard the words “Le Petit Prince,” you’re going to be a happy camper.

Pilot Wrist Shot

Like other metallic colors in the Swiss Watch market, IWC’s blue in the Antoine De Saint Exupéry collection seems to change color in different light. In lower light, it’s almost black, but in florescent light, it’s a radient, metallic blue. It’s a spectacular bit of eye-trickery that many other blue watches on the market can’t seem to match – especially as many watches move to ceramics for ‘truer’ colors (we’re looking at you, Rolex Batman).

As opposed to going for a crayon box blue like a lot of ceramic watches are these days, IWC has sought for something different with this collection – and that’s what makes the Antoine De Saint Exupéry Le Petit Prince collection all the more special.

Come on in to Burdeen’s Jewelry and you can pick up one of these three blue Antoine De Saint Exupéry watches or a special IWC Big Pilot’s Heritage today. Just call us at 800-656-0414.

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AP’s hexagonal screws ‘screw’ with the imagination

AP Royal Oak Screws

AP Royal Oak’s ‘screws’ are a part of a visual trick to fool the eye into believing that Audemars Piguet has some secret to place a hexagonal peg into a round hole

Owning a Swiss watch is extremely rewarding, not only because it instantly catapults you into a family of fellow collectors, but because you get to study each and every millimeter of your new possession. One of the most interesting things about watches is the skill it takes to create something so amazing out of tiny, intricate parts.

If you are reading this and you were lucky enough to get a high end Swiss watch for Christmas or Hannukah – take a look at it – just look at how many nuts bolts and screws you can find. Even if you weren’t one of the lucky ones, take a look at your current watch – especially if you have a Display Back. The amount of specially-created tiny nuts, bolts, and screws is astounding. Just imagine the skill it took to create those tiny parts and put them together.

One particular watch – the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak is of particular interest when you think of nuts, bolts and screws. On its face, it has exposed screws that are hexagonal in shape. This design feature is one of the AP Royal Oak’s most distinctive design features. Whereas the Hublot Big Bang, which has traditional round-headed screws, the AP Royal Oak has mesmerized many watch collectors with its seemingly illogical screw head design.

That’s the trick – the Hublot actually has screws in its face whereas the AP has bolts on its face. Audemars Piguet only places the straight line in the middle of the head of the bolt to trick the owner of the watch into thinking that it is a hexagonal screw when it isn’t a screw at all.

We spoke with a Chicagoland components company about this very subject. In fact, they’re in love with the AP. From its octagonal face to the exposed bolts, its industrial design is right up Components For Industry’s alley.

“There are components of all sizes in all types of watches – in fact, they’re in pretty much everything you own,” CEO Kevin Christie said. “In the average large Breitling, there’s a 1.4-milimeter screw; on a Patek Philippe, it’s 1.3 mm or even smaller. For our industry, this isn’t all that small. We see components of one millimeter or less and on the flip side, we create railroad grade nuts and bolts that are 30-plus pounds apiece.”

When we asked him about AP’s visual trickery, he said that it isn’t often that they see a company deliberately use a component made to resemble another type i.e. Audemars Piguet’s screw-like bolts.

But as he said, “Anything can be created with enough imagination.”If there’s anything the high-end timepiece industry has, it’s an excess of imagination. From chronographs to perpetual calendars to tourbillons, if you can dream it, you can probably own it. Heck, we carry a watch that might even save your life – the Breitling Emergency. These complications are just the tip of the iceberg in fine watches and we’ve seen it all at Burdeen’s Jewelry.

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Looking into the Eyes of The Hulk

Hulk within a Hulk

The Incredible Hulk is a brand that’s surrounded in a mystique that transcends its pulpy comic book origins. Tapping into the Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde mythos, The Incredible Hulk is ultimately about a man who’s tortured by an animalistic nature that he can’t control.

Yet while Mr. Hyde wanted to turn into Dr. Jekyll, Bruce Banner often did anything in his power to retain control of his emotions and keep his human form. The funny thing is, as readers of the comic book, the beauty of The Incredible Hulk’s form is not lost on us.

The Incredible Hulk represents the absolute zenith of the human form – beyond the tools that nature gave us – and gives us a literary glimpse of what an unchecked science can do to the human body – even if it ultimately creates something beautiful, if destructive.

The Incredible Hulk and The Rolex Hulk

So, what does this have to do with high-end watches? There is a tenuous connection between what the comic book gave us and with what designers from Rolex, Audemars Piguet, Omega, Breitling and the like do every day. Ultimately, what we wear on our wrist is beautiful at the expense of practicality. It’s unchecked science – what do we need with a tourbillon, after all, but to marvel at its over-engineered beauty?

The Rolex Submariner Hulk 116610LV began as a successor to the beloved 16610 LV ‘Kermit’ with its green bezel and black dial. This time, in 2010, Rolex went all-in with the color green and unlike the 16610 LV Kermit before it, the Hulk benefits from a ceramic dial, so the green will never fade – much like the green from our giant, gamma-irradiated friend.

Right now in our case, we have a prime example of piece of artistry on one of today’s most beloved watches. This time, it’s a Hulk within a Hulk, if you will – a 116610LV with The Incredible Hulk painted on the dial. While we tried to track down the artist, this timepiece seems to be one-of-a-kind as even the previous owner did not know who the artist was.

Plus, this was not a Bamford original. Since our partner store B. Young & Co. is a Bamford Authorized Dealer, we would know if this was one of their watches, but it’s not. Instead, it’s a piece of functional art where the artist him (or her?) self is lost to time.

Even if we don’t know who painted the dial, the level of expertise is still there. The Hulk within a Hulk is still there for all to ‘Marvel’ at. Whether you’re the wearer, a person in the room, this Rolex Hulk will surely garner attention – maybe just as much as a one-ton green superhero.

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AP Royal Oak stands as a classic due to unique styling

What's so great about AP Royal Oaks

The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak is one of the most iconic watches on the market today. It’s AP’s standard-bearer with over 40 years under its belt and with that type of heritage, it’s right up there with the Rolex Submariner, Breitling Navitimer and Omega Speedmaster as one of the most recognizable Swiss timepieces on the high-end timepiece market today.

From its octagonal case, to its hexagonal exposed screws, this watch is a bold statement on anyone’s wrist. Its chunky design has made it a favorite of people as varied as high-end watch collectors to professional athletes and musicians. This is a watch that appeals to everyone – so long as you can afford its point of entry.

What makes it so desirable?

Once you get a Royal Oak on your wrist, it just simply feels different from other watches. Much like Breitling, a Royal Oak has a heft that tells the wearer that it’s there. While some watches like Patek Phillippe, Baume and Mercier, and Jaeger LeCoultre pride themselves on creating ultra-light and thin watches that require a different type of watchmaking to carry out, Royal Oaks pride themselves on their impressive size.

It’s not bad, but it’s a certainly a different experience from any Rolex or Omega on the market. These timepieces demand respect from everyone – including the wearer.

Big Bang vs Royal Oak

Pretenders aplenty

If imitation is the highest form of flattery, then the Hublot Big Bang is a watch that has the Royal Oak on as highest of pedestals. Why? It’s because the Big Bang has combined many styling elements that are reminiscent of the AP Royal Oak.

With its oversized case, exposed screws, Big Bangs are very reminiscent of the distinctive Royal Oak styling. That said, Hublot just strayed far enough away to carve its own niche – keeping the case and exposed screws circular rather than octagonal/hexagonal like the Royal Oak.

However, if a watch collector or even a lamen doesn’t see them resemblance, then there’s something wrong with their eyes. However, given Hublot’s quality, the Big Bang can make a nice stand-in as the prices start at $8,000 for a nice preowned model compared to double that for a nice preowned Royal Oak.

Bulova vs AP

In addition to the Big Bang, Bulova made an homage watch in the 1970’s that was so close that it stands a legendary homage with a disputed backstory involving the very creator of the AP Royal Oak – Gerald Genta – once a designer at Bulova before joining Audemars Piguet. While Genta designed the Royal Oak after he departed Bulova, the copycat Royal Oak stands as one of the most sought-after homages of all time due to how close the design is.

Go ahead and try to find one of these Bulova “Royal Oaks” in mint condition. We dare ya! We don’t think you’ll be able to – even with the power of the internet on your side. Plus, why would you – when you can have the real thing!

Royal Oak vs. Royal Oak Offshore

No matter how close a design may be, there’s only one Audemars Piguet and there’s definitely only one Royal Oak. Well, make that two. While the original Royal Oak is a watchmaking classic, the Royal Oak Offshore is truly the one that has garnered so much attention in music and popular culture in general.

The Offshore features a larger and thicker case. While standard Royal Oaks go from 33 mm for women’s quartz models up to 44 mm with a tourbillon, Royal Oak Offshores feature cases start at 42 mm. While the measurements are a mere 2 millimeters apart – with the larger going to the standard Royal Oak, the Offshore wears much larger on the wrist thanks to its thicker case.

As a result, it is a watch that wears somewhat similar to a Breitling Super Avenger, or dare we say it, the Hublot Big Bang. In other words, a large wrist may be required for a Royal Oak.

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