Often you will see watches that collaborate with other brands, or even movie franchises. These watches are released as limited-edition watches and also priced at a higher premium comparing to their “normal” line of watches. If you are wondering why a certain watch is priced higher than its normal counterpart chances are it is a limited edition or collaboration watch.
There is not much to say or explain when it comes to collaboration watches. These watches sometimes have a lot of rich history, while others are forged completely out of the blue without anyone expecting it. I will go through some of my favourite watches that have collaborated with other brands.
Tiffany x Patek Philippe
Patek Philippe produces and makes some of the best timepieces in the world, and arguably has one of the richest histories compared to other watchmakers. According to Tiffany’s own website, the history of this collaboration started in 1851, where Antoine Norbert de Patek met Charles Lewis Tiffany at his store in New York. From a simple gesture of a handshake, they established a relationship between the watchmaker and the jeweller.
One of my favourite watches from Patek Philippe is the Calatrava. This line of watches is in my opinion one of the cleanest and nicest watches to look at. Now a Calatrava do they have their own Tiffany collection as well and these as expected go for a bit more than the original Calatrava. The original Calatrava can go from anywhere between A$25,000 to A$30,000. While a Calatrava x Tiffany will go anywhere between A$35,000+.
Snoopy x Omega
The history between Omega and Snoopy does not just relate to the cartoon. However, it relates to Omega and its connection to NASA and its efforts in helping their astronauts on their missions. The history is a bit complicated and long to explain just for this post, but ultimately in 1968 NASA used Snoopy to act as a “watchdog” over their missions. They awarded Snoopy pins to NASA employees and these pins were flown during NASA missions. The Omega Speedmaster was used by the Apollo 13 crew and the watch played a massive part on the success of the mission as it was used to time crucial elements on their mission. Due to the success of the Apollo 13’s mission and the crucial part the Omega Speedmaster played in it, NASA awarded the Omega Speedmaster a Snoopy award on the October 5th, 1970. In 2003, Omega introduced a watch to commemorate the award they received and then created a special limited edition Snoopy edition watch. Since then, Omega has released a few Snoopy versions of the watch and in my opinion out of the many collaboration watches available these ones have been done much more tastefully than others.
Seiko x Studio Ghibli/Anime/Videogames
Seiko as of 2020 has done a lot of collaborations with a lot of pop culture brands and references. Such as Naruto, Pokémon and also Studio Ghibli. All of these watches were released as limited-edition watches and are available in a number of movements as well as designs. I am a huge fan of some of the anime they have collaborated with and the watches have impressed me as to the amount of detail they have put in. Seiko being a Japanese brand, they are able to get a lot of collaboration with some of the biggest anime and pop culture in Japan. However, I do believe they are at a risk of running into a bit of over saturation with these limited-edition watches. Beforehand, people were more excited with limited edition watches as they believe they will not be releasing anymore in the future. Seiko on the other hand, has released quite a few limited-edition watches that they do not feel as “limited” anymore. This is just my opinion I could be very wrong, but I will still be excited to see what watches Seiko releases and what other anime or brands they decide to work with in the future.
Seiko has collaborated with: Mario, Monster Hunter, Porco Rosso, Jojo’s Bizzare Adventure, Brian May, Naruto and Street Fighter.
If you are buying collaboration watches just for the sake of hoping that the price of the watch will go up in the future, you might be right for the most part. I would still tread carefully and check the price charts of watches released beforehand by that brand. If you are buying these watches because you love the collaboration between your favourite brands then definitely go for it, but keep in mind the premium in price you will pay for these watches.