Professional Jeweler Archive: Living Large in Las Vegas

August 2004


Living Large in Las Vegas

Colors and big cases dominate for fall

Big is king among timepiece introductions at the JCK Show-Las Vegas in June. Large watches for men and women, many with diamonds, are hot among volume manufacturers as well as their luxury counterparts. The extra dial space often allows for three, four and even five subdials, in many cases set for different time zones.

Some vendors have responded to requests for “mini” timepieces, mostly on the fashion side of the business. Calvin Klein – among others – offers its version with a case that’s smaller than the quartz movement. The movement is cleverly engaged as the lower part of the case, hidden under the strap.

Galuchat (stingray) straps are attached to more women’s watches and several men’s watches. Also seen are cuff straps reminiscent of late-1960s and 1970s styles. The leather or fabric cuffs often have a detachable watch case. Also common among the many fashion vendors: bubble-type crystals in numerous colors and configurations.

New & Noted

Among initiatives from timepiece companies that debuted at the show, Krieger Watch Co. of Miami Beach, FL, showed a large clear-aluminum model with a manual-wind movement. Only five cases can be created each day using technology that originates outside the watch industry. Boegli, the Swiss maker of musical pocket watches (distributed by Chronotime, Peapack, NJ), introduces a U.S. first: an alarm wristwatch with a miniature music box inside.

Bill Blass makes its full timepiece introduction with Swiss-made models for men and women, and Bulova offers new automatic Accutron models featuring the well-known Valjoux 7750 chronograph movement. Reintroduction of the famed Havana-based Cuervo y Sobrinos features a collection of automatic Swiss-made steel and karat gold models with early 20th century character. Each watch arrives to the customer in a cigar humidor.

Jeep and National Geographic now offer full watch collections. Junghans debuts radio-controlled timepieces that automatically reset to the correct local time regardless of location in North America, Europe or Japan – a world first.

– by Michael Thompson

Fashion brands play to extremes in size and color. This cK Bold Mini Color (shown with sapphires and spessartite garnets) hides its quartz movement under lizard-print straps. The movement is larger than the 16mm case. CK Watches, Weehawken, NJ; (888) 256-4659.
Lambretta introduces the Riviera Rubber, which owes its design to headlights on the original Italian Lambretta scooter. Retail, $165. Lambretta, New York City; (212) 472-8350,
National Geographic’s first watch line features the Endeavor multifunction at $350 suggested retail. National Geographic Watches, Egana of Switzerland, Pompano Beach, FL; (800) 260-3151.
The Ghost from Krieger Watch Corp. is a world-first model made from clear aluminum. The 53mm diameter watch with mechanical movement is about $8,000 suggested retail. Krieger Watch, Miami Beach, FL; (305) 861-1804,

Copyright © 2004 by Bond Communications