Pocket watches – The ultimate classic watch

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Wrist or arm watches were worn mainly by women in the seventeenth century. Men usually wore a pocket watch. It wasn’t until the 1880’s that men started to wear wristwatches after British officers begun to wear their watch in this fashion during the during colonial wars.

On this page, you will find pocket watches and pendant watches in different styles of famous brands like Mondaine, Royal London, Davis, and Festina. Read more about pocket watches at the bottom of this page.

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Pocket watches, watches with a long history

Until the early 20th century, the wristwatch was seen by men as an effeminate accessory. In men's fashion pocket watches were replaced by wristwatches around the time of World War I, when officers in the field started wearing their watches on the wrist because it was easier to read. The first models wristwatches were ordinary pocket watches that were fitted with a custom made leather strap.

The origin of pocket watches

The first clocks that were worn on the body were an intermediate form of clocks and watches. These clock watches were attached to clothing or worn around the neck on a chain. The watches were made of heavy materials and had only a one (hour) hand. The dial was not coated with glass but had a hinged lid, often decorated and with a grid or an opening in the lid so that the time could be read without opening the lid. It wasn’t until around 1610 that watches were fitted with a protective crystal.

Styles change, and in the 17th century, rich men began wearing their watches in their pocket instead of as a pendant. The rise of the railways - particularly in the United States - in the last half of the 19th century led to a widespread use of pocket watches by all population groups.

Pocket watches remained popular until after World War I, after which a transition period began. Watches were mounted on a short handmade leather strap or fob. This belt often had a protective flap over the dial and the crystal. This is the origin of wristwatches.

Types pocket watches

There are two types of pocket watches: the hunter-case pocket watch (with a lid), and open-face pocket watch (without a lid). An intermediate form, known as the demi-hunter, is a pocket watch that has a glass panel on the lid or a hole in the centre so that the time can be read.
Also, watch pendants (pendant watches) are still produced.

Renewed popularity of pocket watches

Despite the fact that in today’s fashion wristwatches have replaced by pocket watches, this type of watch remains popular. It's a beautiful watch to give as a gift, for example for a retirement, anniversary or birthday. Today, young people can be spotted wearing pocket watches again; in combination with a three-piece suit, or in the small front pocket (originally meant for a watch) of their jeans.

Our collection of pocket watches

In our collection of pocket watches, we have both classical and modern pocket watches for men and women. Railroad pocket watches and watch chains are both in stock.

Ordering a  pocket watch online

We have pocket watches in stock for both men and women, but also watch pendants. You can choose a quartz movement or an automatic pocket watch. Pocket watches are ideal for engraving and giving as a gift. Please contact our customer service department if you wish to have your pocket watch engraved.