Solid Feeling Construction

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You want your watch to feel well put together and solid. Check to see how well the strap or bracelet fits to the case. There should little to no wiggle room. Put the watch on your wrist and see how well the clasp or buckle operates, they should be smooth with a nice action. They should further not feel flimsy or poorly sized. If the watch has a rotating diver’s bezel, again, twist it around and see how much movement it gives in a resting position. A good watch should not make too much or any noise when shifting around briskly on your wrist, and it goes without saying that it should feel like it is all assembled in a tight-fitting manner. It is also the case that a lot of the time, Swiss companies (even at these lower price points), make better metal bracelets than other countries, even Japan. It is true that a Swiss designed bracelet might actually be manufactured elsewhere, but they take great pride in refinement of these areas.

Designed By Actual Watch Makers

Consider that two types of people are designing watches. Those that care about how well a watch functions as a timepiece, and others that just care about how they look. The best watches are designed using fundamental watch design principles that value function AND form. The alternative are “fashion” watches that might look nice, but actually have superfluous or vestigial design cues. Worst case scenario is a watch that is so poorly designed, it does not even function properly. Examples of this are missing chronograph subdials, erroneous markers on dial, inoperable measuring scales just placed for show, and my all time biggest pet peeve – hands that are too short or the wrong size. The last thing you want is your nice looking watch to function like a movie prop. So do yourself a favor and really take a good long look at the dial and all its features, figuring out what each and every function does, along with making a decision of whether it is usable given your standards. This is one of the biggest problems in the watch market today, and you’ll be proud that you took the time to find a watch that was actually designed to be a highly functional instrument.

Locking Deployant Clasp If On A Metal Bracelet

Cheaper watches with metal bracelets still have what is called a single locking clasp. This is the type of bracelet that literally just snaps or clicks into place. The best metal bracelets have what are know as “double or triple locking clasps.” The image below has a bracelet with a double locking clasp (deployment). The piece on the left “locks” via clicking down when it attaches to the bottom segment. That is the first “lock.” The second is the little metal flap that “locks” again over the first piece to secure it being closed. A triple lock often features a push-button in the mix, or there are also “double locking clasps” with a push button instead of a fold over flap. The bottom line is that you want a watch bracelet that will stay secure on your wrist no matter what you are doing or if you accidentally hit the bracelet on something.

Top Things To Look For In A Luxury Watch Part 1: Entry Level Luxury

2Welcome to the first of three articles that offer an overview for watch newbies on what to look for when getting a new watch. Esteemed watch expert readers are going to be familiar with much of what I am talking about, and I encourage your personal additions to the list. For others, I hope to help guide your watch purchase decisions and discuss information that many of us take for granted. Too often am I presented with questions about what watch people should buy, or what makes a watch good. I simply cannot review the hundreds of watch brands and thousands of styles with each person – what I can give people is a general overview of what to look for and ask about, given your budget.
Let me first say, these lists will not discuss complications (functions) that watches have. It doesn’t matter to me whether you are looking for a chronograph (stopwatch), perpetual calendar (does not need to be adjusted very often), GMT (24-hour hand for a second time zone), or otherwise… These three lists will mention aspects of the watch or its construction that are often function agnostic. Plus, these items are overall things to look for. There is no “perfect” watch, so just make sure the watches you are looking for satisfy as many of the items below as possible.

In “Part 1,” I will discuss features you should look for in what I call an “entry level luxury” watch. This is going to be the $300 and above price point. I will not cap it because different watches simply give you more for the money and these features are certainly things you’ll want in upper range watches as well. The next price point will be $1000 and up, and finally we will have the price point of about $20,000 and up. This latter price point will include things at the $20,000 level as well as the $200,000 level.

For $300-and-up watches:
This is a broad range of watches with probably the largest selection of watches in it. For some of you, $300 is a huge sum for a watch, while for others of you, this is a paltry amount barely worth your attention. If you are in the former category, you’ll want to listen up as these are important things to look for. Again, this is just one partial list, and there are, of course, other things that go into a good watch.

1. Sapphire Crystal

A watch crystal is the transparent cover over the face of the watch. Crystals have been made using different materials over the years, but only a few major materials dominate the market today. Most of the watches you’ll look at have one of two types of crystals; mineral glass or synthetic sapphire crystals. Mineral crystals are cheaper and offer one benefit over sapphire – they don’t tend to shatter if struck hard. Meaning they will crack, but not shatter. Shattered sapphire crystals are relatively rare and typically occur with a very harsh impact. The better the watch, the thicker the sapphire crystal will be, and thus, less likely to break. Sapphire crystals are incredibly scratch-resistant though. You often see well-worn watches with beat-up cases, but a “flawless” crystal. Thus, sapphire crystals are more desirable compared to mineral crystals and should be preferred the majority of the time.

2. Solid Metal Construction

To some people, it might be obvious to get a watch out of solid metal, but you’d be surprised at how some cheaper watches cut costs. Steel watches should be made from grade 316L stainless steel almost all the time. Plus, the watch case and bracelet links should be solid pieces of metal, rather than folded metal or anything hollow. It is easy to tell if a bracelet is solid by inspecting the side of it and noticing if looks like one solid piece. In watches at this level, cases are best made from the fewest number of pieces and using the most metal possible. This means the least (or no) amount of materials such as plastic or otherwise.

3. Swiss Movement Or Japanese Movement (if it is a Japanese watch)

Switzerland is known for making high quality watch movements – you knew that. Japan also makes good movements, but not all movements are created equally. Most of the the time, Swiss movements come from ETA – or Ronda, especially if they are quartz movements (though this is not always the case). Japanese quartz movements typically come from makers such as Seiko, Citizen, and Casio. While these countries are not the only makers of movements, at these price points try to get movements from these regions as much as possible. Plus, if a watch is not Japanese, try to find one with a Swiss movement. You generally want to stay away from Chinese movements, though, this is not always a signal of low quality. Japanese watches probably utilize Japanese movements the best, though you’ll find Japanese movements (often Miyota, which is part of Citizen) in timepieces from all over the world. Lastly, at this price point, don’t worry too much about finding mechanical watches – you are just fine with a quartz movement – even though there are plenty of mechanical movements available.

The Wind Inspires it All: The Driving Force Behind Chicago Fashion Schools

Chicago, the “windy city” is known for its multicultural population as well as its dramatic architecture and love for the arts.

In detail, Chicago has:

1. at least 3 million people
2. harbors, parks, beaches, clubs, and ethnic restaurants
3. 29 miles of lakefront, museums, neighborhood festivals, and cultural attractions

People visit the city as often as winds do. Also, tourists favor the mid-western hospitality of the people. They also share stories of their enjoyment in going to exhibits in museums like Degas, Monet, and the whimsical “Cows on Parade” of Summer 1999.

The businesses blended with the multicultural aspects of the city are said to be the driving “winds” that spur creativity among people who visit or study in Chicago. As always, it is inevitable to have fashion schools within a city that celebrate and support the arts and dynamism of culture.
The following are some featured fashion design schools in Illinois:

1. The International Academy of Design and Technology is located in Chicago.
The institute offers the following degree programs:

• Bachelor of Fine Arts, Major in Fashion Design and Marketing
• Associate of Applied Science in Fashion Design and Marketing

The curriculum of Fashion and Design assimilates the study of new trends and innovations in the thriving international industry of fashion with the mastery of traditional skills, thus providing a holistic background to both fashion amateurs and masters alike when it comes to designing.

• Bachelor of Arts, Major in Merchandising Management • Associate of Applied Science in Merchandising Management

The program of Merchandising Management provides students and professionals as well as with the opportunity to contend within the job market by integrating theoretical concepts with practical implementations. However, students can rest assured that after graduation their skills on developing suitable visual displays, and utilizing appropriate business practices and scales are honed to help them achieve profitability in the long run.
2. The Illinois Institute of Art is primarily situated in Schaumburg. The degree programs they offer vary by location.

The Illinois Institute of Art is, basically, an association of schools in different locations. Collectively, the Art Institute is considered as a leader in the area of applied science education.
Their courses such as Fashion Marketing and Fashion Design are restructured on a regular basis to reveal ideas garnered from industry advisors, leaders, and employers for relevance and practical applications in the marketplace.
The Art Institute also possesses seasoned faculty members who are also affiliated to the local community of functions. Thus, this provides students with plenty of occasions for consultation with industry professionals and practicing designers. As students’ knowledge and skills improve through the programs, they are required to plan an initial design and execute it into a finished product to cap their stay in the institution.

3. International Academy of Design and Technology

The school has campuses in Chicago, Los Angeles, and Orlando. They provide program areas and a variety of degree levels designed to fit your unique career track. In detail, they offer:
• Diploma in Fashion Design • Diploma in Merchandising and Fashion Marketing
These are only three among the plenty list of schools in this city. The decision now lies in your hand. Within the “windy city” are competitions and strict trainings from various places in the job arena. Where do you think the “will of the wind inside you” will bring you and your high hopes of hitting it big in the fashion industry?

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