Christmas is coming and it’s time to start looking for gifts. Here is a selection of original and affordable gift ideas for watchmaking fans, whether newcomers, experienced fans or recognized collectors. The watchmaking passion is not just buying watches! There is an entire world that revolves around the object itself, which your loved ones will be happy to discover.
A watchmaking toolkit (less than € 20)
There is nothing like getting your hands dirty to understand the operation of watchmaking. For those who want to embark on the experience, the watchmaker’s toolkit is the perfect gift. Some are very accessible like this, we are certainly not going to make good watchmaking with it, but it is still very practical, either to change a bracelet, replace a battery, remove dust lodged under the glass, or even why not dismantle a movement from A to Z.
A special trivial persecution of haute horlogerie (less than € 30)
A trivial search specially designed by the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie for enthusiasts. Ideal to test and develop your knowledge, the game offers 330 questions that are divided into 6 different themes: materials, techniques, history, brands, collections and decorations. Most of the questions are quite pointed, and some of them will be difficult even for a confirmed fan, but the game is still accessible and fun, as long as you are a fan of the watchmaking sector and want to learn. It will also allow players to discover anecdotes that will make them shine in society …! 30 euros
A kit to build your own wooden clock (less than € 50)
This 170-piece laser-cut wooden kit is a kind of three-dimensional puzzle, which becomes a “functional” mechanical watch once assembled. The perfect gift for those who have discovered a passion for watchmaking and want to understand in detail how a mechanical movement works. It is recommended by the manufacturer from the age of 14, but I think it will delight watch lovers of all ages.
Assembly takes 8 hours after documentation. When finished, the clock is 35 centimeters high by 24 centimeters long and 11.5 centimeters thick. The object itself is already aesthetically interesting, but it is especially the construction phase that should attract enthusiasts.
(*) functional is in quotes because you don’t have too much time to give it time, the power reserve is 20 minutes
Well … we have already ordered …
Update: We spent about 6 hours making this wooden clock! Rating: We had a good time and confirmed that it was worth it! It is certainly still a toy and we ended up with a reserve of energy quite far from the 20 minutes announced by the brand, but the idea was not to use it as a watch anyway! And the wooden clock can now be used as a beautiful decoration. We saw someone who painted certain parts (during assembly) to differentiate minutes from hours. The rendering is great too. We made a video to give you a better impression of our manufacturing!
A mechanical watch winder (less than € 50)
As a reminder, in case you visit our site for the first time in search of a gift for an enthusiast: unlike quartz watches that are equipped with batteries, it is the movement of the arm that provides the energy required to operate a watch mechanical. It will continue to work for a few days without the need to be used, but it will stop after a more or less long period depending on the reserve that the movement has. To avoid having to restart and rewind it before you can use it again, there is the mechanical watch winder. It is a box in which there is a base for one or more watches, which will light on itself to keep the clock or watches moving, and thus provide them with the energy they need. Stay on time and ready to use.
There are thousands of models of electric winders, of all sizes. I recommend this cheap model below € 50 but keep in mind that there are all prices. The winder in question works with the mains but also with the battery if necessary. It can accommodate 2 watches of your choice, and you know how to stay discreet with its sober and elegant design.
A beautiful book about watchmaking (from € 50)
There are countless books on the subject of watchmaking. Whether they are books on the history of brands, techniques, the history of the industry itself or educational books that provide, for example, the basis for recognizing a real clock from a copy, several lives to complete all literature dedicated to watches and their sector.
Some are of very good quality, both in terms of content and in terms of the object itself, and therefore, will be a perfect gift for enthusiasts, beginners or confirmed.
With less than € 50, this book on the basics of watch authentication, very well documented and accessible, is an excellent option.
A little more expensive during a stay of less than € 70, I recommend this beautiful book about the world of mechanical watches and its various complications.
A travel case (€ 65)
The watch lover often has several watches. Quartz models, automatic, daily use watches, others reserved for special occasions, favorites, gifts, follies, the most modest, in short. When the watch lover travels, he will surely wear one on his wrist, but he may want to take some with him so he can adapt what he wears to different occasions during his stay. Since the watch boxes are often large, the travel case is a safe bet.
There are several types of storage to carry your watch. I suggest you choose a Wolf 1834 storage roller.
A watch box (€ 60)
We solve the problem of transporting watches during a trip, but what about your storage at home? A beautiful watch case is the essential accessory for the fan who is growing his collection little by little. Here again, there are all sizes and for all budgets. You will find less than 25 euros to store 12 watches, as is the case here.
To climb a little, you can use this model with effective imitation leather finishes, which is maintained for less than 60 euros, to store 10 watches.
Cufflinks watch mechanism (from € 130)
A French brand called “Time Button” offers handmade cufflinks with real mechanical watch mechanisms. The basic mechanisms come from different old watches, sometimes from big brands, sometimes from more modest manufacturers. Therefore, you can choose to offer twins that wear the mechanism of an old Omega, or stay more sober with a more accessible movement that comes, for example, from an old Russian clock. Count € 130 for the Russian model that is already taking effect! A very original gift to talk about …
Introductory training in watchmaking (from € 290)
Several companies offer introductions to the watchmaking professions, in Paris and in the provinces. Objectif Horlogerie offers one of the most accessible and complete according to us. The initiation called “Atelier First Time” lasts 4 hours 30 minutes and links “learning and good humor” according to his own words. Some of our friends and editors participated in this initiation, all were very satisfied. A short but complete experience, which teaches participants to dismantle and reassemble a Swiss mechanical caliber of the ETA brand, reference 6498 to be precise.
The cheapest option is to go to Paris to receive training, but Objectif Horlogerie also offers certain services in the rest of the country. Take a look at our article for more information (count around 300 euros for the first prices).
As an additional benefit: the professional tool: the scope of Lepsi “Watch Analyzer”
Lepsi is a Swiss brand that develops professional quality connected tools that measure the performance of mechanical watches. Your most accessible tool is the “Reach”. A small device that connects to a smartphone or tablet, and measures the accuracy of the mechanism of a watch.
This is a connected tool that I would reserve for the most passionate, especially for its price of more than 200 euros, but that can be a great help in the task of authenticating watches. A large brand watch is supposed to respect a certain precision. If, when inspecting an old watch of an important brand, the Lepsi indicates too low accuracy compared to what it is supposed to be for the model in question, there is surely an eel under the rock …
With all these Christmas gift ideas, hopefully you will find an original idea to please a watch enthusiast! If you have other ideas, feel free to give them to us!