Creative and Innovative Wrist Watches


Creative and Innovative Wrist Watches

Hello Fellow Horologists!  The Venue is back again with a feature article that takes a candid, new look at Creative and Innovative Wrist Watches for Men! In fact, when I say ‘Creative and Innovative’, I also mean ‘Abnormal, Abstract, Bizarre, Complex, Outrageous, Eccentric, Exquisite, Extraordinary, Surreal, Unique, Unusual, Way-Out, Wacky, and Weird’And aesthetically speaking, these particular wrist watches are just that! 

So one might ask, what deeming qualities or characteristics make a wrist watch creative and innovative? Its overall appearance?  Obviously.  Or the number of complications and/or features it has?  To a certain degree.

Also, do creative and innovative wrist watches for men include automatic, aviator, chronograph, digital, diver, dress, hybrid, quartz, LED, luxury, mechanical, military, smartwatch, and sports watches as well?  The answer to all three is a resounding YES! 

Nevertheless, because “knowledge is key!”, let us begin with a brief historical synopsis of wrist watches and describe the different types of wrist watches available for men.


A Brief History of Wrist Watches


Historically, the first wrist watch made for men is not easy to determine.  Although there were several watchmakers creating time pieces during the 15th Century, the credit for the invention of the wrist watch goes to Peter Heinlein in 1505 with the Pomander Watch in 1505.

Wrist watches made up until the 18th Century were traditionally worn by women and nobility.  As a matter of fact, wrist watches for men, as opposed to the then impractical pocket watches, do not come into play until The Second Boer War (1899-1902) and The First World War (1914-1918) with the overwhelming need for the military to accurately coordinate troops and synchronize battle maneuvers.   

In the post-war era, the utilitarian use of wrist watches with extended features and/or complications for men sparks a vast market.  By the mid 20th Century, wrist watches for men become fashionable and more and more men begin to adorn them as part of their everyday regalia.


The Types of Wrist Watches

  • Automatic – An automatic watch, also considered a mechanical watch, is self-winding and uses natural movement to power the watch.

  • Aviator– An aviator or pilot watch is usually over sized with large, easily read dials, a triangle at the 12 o’clock position and ratcheted “onion” crown.

  • Chronograph – Traditionally, a chronograph watch is also a stopwatch with an analog or digital display and an independent sweeping second hand that can be stopped or started on the stem.

  • Digital – A watch that displays electronic numbers for time, rather than hands on a dial (analog).

  • Diver – A diver watch or dive watch is one that is able to resist water pressure at least 100 meters in depth.

  • Dress – A dress watch is a particular timepiece (digital or analog) made to be worn with formal and business attire, typically with long sleeve shirts.

  • Hybrid – A hybrid watch or hybrid smartwatch looks like any traditional or ordinary timepiece, but is able to send you notifications or incorporate other apps like music, fitness trackers, etc.

  • Quartz – A quartz watch is more accurate than an automatic or mechanical watch.  It utilizes a battery to send electricity through a quartz crystal by way of an electric circuit at which point causes the quartz crystal to vibrate at a precise frequency of 32768 times/s.

  • LED – A LED watch is basically a digital watch that uses light emitting pulse nodes to generate light on the display.

  • Luxury – A luxury watch is a very high quality manufactured watch made with fine materials, and sold at an extremely high price.  These watches typically are made by long time reputable watchmakers.

Mechanical – A mechanical watch must be wound up manually and utilizes a mainspring to drive the hands on the mechanism to measure time.

  • Military – A military watch is one that is issued by the military to soldiers for strategic purposes and has no identifying marks such as logos and manufacturing labels.

  • Smartwatch – A smartwatch uses a touch screen to get notifications, receive and send messages, and utilize apps.

  • Sport – A sport watch is rugged with resistances to water damage, scratches, and shock due to physical contact.


What Makes A Watch Creative and Innovative?

Without a shadow of a doubt, the first characteristic that makes a wrist watch creative and innovative is its overall design and visual appearance.  Manufactured using the best materials available, these particular watches are unorthodox and unusual, yet sleek and high tech.  They tend to bold and loud with elaborate designs, interesting themes, fantastic colors, and rather odd shapes.

Other characteristics that make a wrist watch creative and innovative are the number of complications and/or features the timepiece (mostly mechanical) possesses.  To horologists, a complication is any additional feature (time related only) of a timepiece that exceeds just displaying hours, minutes, and seconds.   For example, there are alarm, calendar (month, day, and year), chronograph, moon phase, perpetual calendar, repeater, and striking complications.  The wrist watch with the most complications is currently The Vacheron Constantin Reference 57260 with a total of 57 (see image right).




What Men Wear Creative and Innovative Wrist Watches?

Since creative and innovative wrist watches encompass automatic, aviator, chronograph, digital, diver, dress, hybrid, quartz, LED, luxury, mechanical, military, smartwatch, and sports watches as well, the answer to this question is All Men Wear Creative and Innovative Wrist Watches!   Athletes, Adventure and Sport Enthusiasts, Divers, Pilots, Entertainers, Technicians, and Yours Truly.  The list goes on and on and on.

In all , men’s fascination with wrist watches has almost grown exponentially after a century.  Whether it’s for function or sophistication or both, it is certainly safe to say that there are at best hundreds of millions of men across the globe wearing these timepieces today and the trend does not seem to be slowing down anytime soon.


Author’s Note

Writing this article has been enlightening and fun.  This said, I would like to dedicate this article to my beloved sister, Jennifer Mae Richardson, who passed on June 7th, 2020.  She was also fun I will miss her dearly.


Live yours dreams!  Become a part of Wealthy Affiliate.

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Personalized Engraved Jewelry: Why It Is Always Hot

brac engraved personal

Here goes The Venue again on another quest!  In this particular article, we explore the wonderful world of personalized jewelry for men. And why is personalized jewelry for men always hot? To put it simply, personalized jewelry is a fashionable, artistic and physical expression or representation of a person’s individual taste and style.

It allows the consumer to participate in, if not completely control every aspect of the entire jewelry design process, literally becoming a jewelry design consultant to their own finished product. Now if that is not exciting, then what is!

There are many types of personalized jewelry, of which includes personalized embossed jewelry, custom silicon sport wristbands, and rubber bracelets (I will describe these in an example given later), I will cover in another article. But for the intended purposes of this article, we will focus solely on personalized engraved jewelry, respectively.


Personalized Is Not Customized Personalized_Not_Customized

The personalized jewelry industry is continuously growing and trying to align itself with consumers perceptions on what is deemed ‘personalized’. In general, most consumers believe personalized jewelry and customized jewelry are synonymous with one another and can often be confused, as I myself was, by the difference between the two kinds of jewelry.

But do not be confused. Personalized jewelry is not customized jewelry! Thus, in order to have a better understanding of what to expect out of your own personalized jewelry pieces, it is important to accurately define what constitutes as personalized jewelry and customized jewelry. As stated in the introduction, personalized jewelry is indeed unique and highly contingent upon the particular aesthetics of the consumer.

Jewelry can be personalized by adding specific inscriptions or engravings to its original design (i.e. art work, emblems, insignia, letters, logos, names, photos, religious epithets, romantic sentiments, etc.). From a manufacturing standpoint, jewelry can be customized by providing or offering flexible, cost effective interchangeable components or elements to the jewelry itself (i.e. colors, font size, font style, material used, and types of jewelry, etc.) without changing its form, fit, and function.

Here is a simple example that I used to help me truly understand the inherent difference between personalized and customized jewelry. Take for instance, men’s personalized rubber bracelets are an extremely trendy and hot commodity at the moment.

Whether on-line, in a store, at the park, wherever or whenever, I’m sure you have seen these ingenious and simple rubber bracelets many times, dangling around a person’s wrist or wrists, often times with more than one per wrist. They are about half an inch wide, made to slip just over the hand onto the wrist, come in a myriad of colors, multi-colors, and patterns. And always contain some neat catch phrase, symbol, or logo engraved length wise through the middle of them like “Black Lives Matter”, “Smith Family Reunion 2018”, or perhaps even “Live Strong”.

Anyway, these popular rubber bracelets can be purchased online for about $0.06 a unit and a person can custom select a particular size, and choose from a wide assortment of colors and unique patterns. In addition, dependent upon the length, font size or style of the inscription, and actual size of the rubber bracelet itself, the bracelets can also be personalized with most any logo, name, or message a person wishes to engraved on them. Thus, it is strangely possible to purchase your own custom personalized rubber bracelet online! Wow!


A Brief History of  Engraved Jewelry

Even a caveman can do it, right? Of course, the first discovery of etching or engraving on wood and stone surfaces dates back to early prehistoric man. The Egyptians are the first to apply engraving to art and jewelry, and the Greeks and Romans continue engraving jewelry, like luxurious cameos, through the beginning and end of their respective time periods as well.

Nevertheless, engraving does not become a trade or craft until paper arrives in Europe from China (circa 1300 A.D.) and becomes ready available. By the 15th century, personalized engraved jewelry emerges in the form of devotional and romantic jewelry, whereas personalized, romantic inscriptions or ‘love’ messages were intricately engraved on the inside of wedding rings and signet rings.

If you remember in the previous article posted on The Venue, The Epitome of Gaudy: Gothic Jewelry, rings were typically and fashionably worn on all fingers by both men and women. Many hand engravers are required to keep up with the physical demand for engraved jewelry, spurning the first mass production of jewelry on a large scale in history.

By the end of the 16th century, goldsmithing is a well-established skilled trade in Europe and the mass production of engraved jewelry is prominently replaced by artistic expression. A period in engraving history called the Golden Age.

For men, the need for jewelry adornment lessens and personalized engraved short swords become the rage for both the hierarchy and civilians alike. Not only do they provide a means of self-defense, but also signifies the apparel for describing the social status of gentlemen. However, from the 17th century to the mid 19th century, the need for male adornment lessens.

Personalized engraved jewelry for men exists mainly in the form of military regalia, such as buckles, buttons, dog tags, swords and guns. Signet rings still thrive.


What is Engraving?

To put it simply, engraving is the process of etching or incising designs onto a hard, engravable surface by cutting grooves into it by use of a burin, hand engraver, machine engraver, laser engraver, etc.


Types of Engraving

There are several types of engraving, which include laser engraving, leather engraving, color engraving, wood engraving, photo engraving, glass engraving, line engraving, steel engraving, and stipple engraving.  In addition, there are a myriad of engraving kits, tools, and equipment that you can purchase online!



Where can you find personalized engraved jewelry?

Traditionally, you can find engraving products or have personal jewelry engraved by a local jeweler. Depending on the particular jeweler they may have it done in house or have your jewelry sent to another place to have this done. And this is OK provided that you know the risks, like losing or damaging jewelry in the shipping process, etc.

Another popular place to find personal engraved jewelry is online! There are virtually many sites that offer many engrave able products to fit your particular needs and tastes!

Engraving Costs

Since no two engravers are the same, costs may vary. According to Stanley London, ” Smaller parts can be custom engraved in single quantities for a set up fee of $10 (per engraved surface), and 

40 cents per character for the first 30 characters, 20 cents per character for the 31st through 49th character, and 10 cents per character for engraving in excess of 49 characters”.


A Final Thought

Personalized engraved jewelry for men is more hot than ever! It is seen practically

 everywhere you look 

and I believe helps us define ourselves as well as our character. And here at MJDV, we know that character is of utmost importance, so thus finding your own personalized engraved is also important! Good luck in your search and hope we helped in sending you in the right direction as far as personalized engraved jewelry is concerned!


Highly Recommended Personalized Engraved Jewelry Sites

Personalized Engraved Jewelry: Why It Is Always Hot

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Hip Hop Jewelry: Lost, but Not Forgotten


A Brief Introduction

Completely overshadowed by the current hip-hop bling and ice jewelry craze, exists seemingly lost, but historically reverent and available pieces of Malcolm x inspired hip hop jewelry.  In this particular article, I plan to highlight Malcolm x inspired jewelry by taking a firsthand, historical look at its cultural significance to hip-hop music, myself and the still ever pursuit of changing of the status quo.


Born from a Hip Hop Music Generation

By the summer of 1987, there had emerged many politically charged and controversial rap artists and groups, such as Public Enemy and KRS-One, intent on changing the status quo by emphasizing the social inequalities and injustices committed against the African American community by media and government in their lyrics.  One example of this social inequality was the State of Arizona’s inability to recognize Martin Luther King Day as a state holiday.

Likewise, what also emerged at this time was the creation of Malcolm X inspired jewelry.  Why?  It was a symbolic attempt to give the racial problems and issues of today a past civil rights movement meaning.  It represented the desperate need of African Americans to unite and shed themselves of gang violence and drug-related crimes affluent in their communities and negative perceptions attributed to them.

So what is Malcolm X inspired jewelry exactly?  They are jewelry pieces (i.e. bracelets, necklaces, rings, earrings, brooches, cuff links, tie clips, etc.) comprised of either single or multiple images with the likenesses of Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, and other civil rights activists or engraved words, phrases and symbols indicative of the civil rights movement.

Characteristically, they can be highly ornate, decorated pieces or plain, simple ones.  They were available then and still can be purchased today.  Current rap artists, like Nipsey Hustle, adorn Malcolm x inspired hip hop jewelry and regalia on a regular basis.


A Moment in Time…

Born and raised in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, my father was a brazen, compassionate, proud African-American man with a matter of fact and witty personality. Though educated, he chose a career of shining shoes because it encompassed his passion for people. He spent a lifetime in this pursuit and succeeded. He was also an outstanding actor who frequently appeared in local theater productions, like “Driving Miss Daisy” and “Of Mice and Men“.  And also had a bit role in the movie, “Home Of the Brave“, partially filmed in Spokane, WA.

As a teenager in the summer of 1987, I reDriving Miss Daisy feat Clarence Forechmember sitting at my father’s shine stand, clad in my Malcolm x inspired regalia (a Malcolm X hat, shirt, shorts and handmade leather African medallion necklace) and listening to the many conversations with customers concerning civil rights.  He would exclaim, “I am happy for Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr.  Because if it were not for them, Negroes would have gone completely crazy.”

Now, this was a profound statement coming from a man who not only witnessed the rampant, blatant racism and hatred encompassed by the civil rights era and the south but fell victim to it as well.  You see his eventual migration and relocation to Spokane, WA was an intensely brutal one.

Just a teenager himself, my father had all of his fingers and toes broken by local KKK members and while unconscious, placed in a train car that finally ended up in Colfax, WA.  It was in Colfax, WA. where a family discovered him and cared for his injuries.  They sent for my grandmother, who along with her new husband, came and eventually settled in Spokane.  He made a miraculous recovery and went on to graduate from Lewis and Clark High School with a varsity letter in wrestling and academics in 1961.

The rest is history.  But this statement I will openly and boldly offer:  Not ever! did he let what happened, either discourage him or propel him to racial hatred!  Not once!  Thus, I am proud to say he was my father and I miss him dearly, for he passed away on May 30, 2012.


A Statistical Fact:

The overall impact the criminal justice system, spurred by past and present racial bias and discrimination, has had on the lives of African Americans and African American community as a whole is well-established and documented. Blacks make up 13 percent of the population but represent 50 percent of the nation’s prison population.  In Baltimore, Maryland, and Washington, D.C., more than 50 percent of the Black male population is under the jurisdiction of the criminal justice system. Black men are 6 percent of the population but are more than 40 percent of those on death row (1).

Black youngsters are dealt with no more sympathetically.  A report compiled by the U.S. Department of Justice showed that Black and Latino youth are treated much more harshly in the juvenile justice system than their white peers.  Among first-time youth offenders, African Americans are six times more likely than whites to be sentenced to prison by juvenile courts.  For drug offenses, Black youth are 48 times more likely than whites to be sent to prison (2). Currently, while there are 603,000 Blacks enrolled in institutions of higher education, there are 757,000 who are locked up in federal and state prisons. Moreover, the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics projects that 30 percent of Black boys who turn 12 this year will spend time in jail in their lifetime if current incarceration rates stay constant (3).


A Brief Conclusion

To deny that racism and the degradation of the African-American community do not still exist would be complete heresy. Although the perception of African-Americans is slowly changing, ongoing police brutality and systematic, bureaucratic racial prejudice against African-Americans still remains a staple in the United States.  And so, Malcolm x inspired hip hop jewelry continues to be a symbolic proponent in the fight against racial hatred and prejudice.

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