The Calibre de Cartier Diver

Calibre-de-Cartier-Diver-dialFor a long time Cartier has been over looked as a serious watchmaker. Although they are a top tier jewelery design house (my personal favorite at that), and have been making fantastic watches since the wristwatch was created, for many years their name was far from the lips of those discussing haute horology. That is certainly changing as of late, Carole Forestier-Kaspi is leading the Cartier’s watchmaking department into a new era. Every year they have been coming up with new and innovative complications and creating modern, wearable watches with fine in-house calibres. The latest masterpiece is the Calibre de Cartier Diver, an ISO-certified dive watch powered by the in-house 1904 MC calibre. Continue reading

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Merry Christmas from How To Be Swell

Merry Christmas all you swell readers. My wish for you is to be surrounded by loved ones and enjoying your favorite holiday festivities. I love Christmas, and being a hopeless romantic I am always nostalgic for my favorite sights and sounds of the season. One of my favorite images this time of year is the big city shopping districts all decked out for Christmas, like those immortalized in movies like Miracle on 34th street, Christmas Story, and more recently, Elf.  You can imagine holiday shoppers bustling about carrying packages with large bows for that special someone, and Santa on the street corner ringing bells for the Salvation Army so those less fortunate can enjoy the Holiday as well.

Harry Winston Store in NYC

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Top Ten Car themed Watches

I love top ten lists, they are fun aren’t they? Your top ten best concerts you saw, the top ten cd’s you would want on a desert island, the top ten watches of historical significance, they are all fun to compile and to talk about huh? Well as the weather has been warming and Basil show is going on my mind wanders to my favorite things; cars and spring drives, and of course watches. So, how about another list! the top ten automotive themed watches. Now this isn’t a serious list or comparison of the merits of all of these watches. No, this is merely a list of ten watches(in no preferential order) I believe have done a great job of capturing the theme of speed.

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The Cartier Roadster

headlightThis may not be a new and exciting timepiece for everyone, but for me it is an all time favorite, that I have yet to write about. The Cartier Roadster had been a “Holy Grail” watch for me for a long time. You know the type, that piece that you would want to acquire using any means necessary, but has always been just out of reach. Rest assured my crusade was not in vain, I’ve made my conquest and this watch rests in my personal collection. I didn’t consider this to be a grail watch because of some technical prowess, or revolutionary complication, the feeling was purely about style and design. Being the car aficionado that I am, when I first laid eyes on this watch and understood its nuances, I was captivated. I knew that I would have to have this object of beauty. It was unmistakably the most interesting watch that I had ever seen.IMG_1249 Continue reading

JFKs watches

Our 35th president was a man who exuded style and class. John Fitzgerald “Jack” Kennedy  became one of the most popular presidents and his administration was refered to affectionately as Camelot. He garnered respect from politicians on both sides of the aisle, but he also had a fair share of detractors. Some disliked him so vehemently that they were able to take his life on November 22 1963. Of course any discussion of JFK can go in so many directions; His politics are open for debate, his storied personal life, and many rumored trysts make for sordid conversation. He without a doubt left a huge legacy here in america and depending on your perspective will decide the degree of said legacy. I wont be addressing those topics here, I want to talk about Jack’s personal style, specifically his taste in watches. There are four specific watches related to JFK that tell stories of their own. Four distinguished pieces belonging to the president that he wore for various reasons in noteworthy situations. Continue reading

Top Ten Watches of Historical Significance

I was searching on the internet the other day, stopping at my usual haunts and watch blogs. I was reading all of these great stories of watch histories and it struck me, where can I find the top watches that have really made a mark in history? I did a quick search and I didn’t find any satisfying list compiled, so I took it upon myself to do it.

Here it is; the first thing you’ll notice is that there are more than ten here. Well I took some liberties, and I can, because its my list. I wanted to choose pieces that made an impact, that was he first at something, or contributed something to its legend. I didn’t want to base it on popularity, although the two #10 watches kind of are. Continue reading

Louis Cartier XL Slimline-Tank

The Cartier design house has a long history of serving royalty, stars, and celebrities. The one time Prince of Wales, Edward VII, called Cartier the “Jeweler of the Kings, King of Jewelers”.

Cartier was founded in Paris in 1847 by Louis-François Cartier when he took over the workshop of his master. In 1874, his son Alfred Cartier took over the company, but it was Alfred’s sons; Louis, Pierre and Jacques, who were responsible for establishing the brand name worldwide. Cartier has since become a world renowned fashion house for jewelry, watches and other goods. Louis retained responsibility for the Paris branch, and he was responsible for some of the company’s most celebrated designs, such as the fashionable wristwatches and exotic oriental flavored Art Deco designs. This year they created this beautiful advertisement highlighting their history and icons, notably in the ad is the journey of the Cartier panther. 

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