Designer Watches for 1928 and 1929

Elgin watch ad, showing designer wristwatches by Callot Soeurs, a Paris couture house. Ad from Delineator, June, 1929.

Elgin watch ad, showing designer wristwatches by Callot Soeurs, a Paris couture house. Ad from Delineator, June, 1929.

Here are some Art Deco wristwatches to dream about. Wouldn’t it be lovely to find one of these “Parisienne” Designer watches in your Christmas Stocking, or in a gift box on your plate at breakfast some morning?

Top of ad for Callot Soeurs designer wristwatches, June, 1929.

Top of ad for Callot Soeurs designer wristwatches, June, 1929.

These Elgin watches, for the summer of 1929, are designed by Callot Soeurs (June ad) and Lucien Lelong (May ad)  — just in time for graduation and wedding gifts.

The watches designed by Callot Soeurs have diamonds on their faces, and cost $75.00 each.

Elgin watch with diamond, Callot Soeurs, 1929.

Elgin watch with diamonds, Callot Soeurs, 1929.

Elgin watch by Callot Soeurs, 1929.

Elgin watch by Callot Soeurs, 1929.There are two diamonds on the case. The black cord wristband was new in the twenties.

Elgin watch by Callot Soeurs, 1929. Note the bracelets on the model.

Elgin watch by Callot Soeurs, 1929. Note the bracelets on the model’s arm.

“Bright with the frozen fire of fine selected diamonds . . . set in solid 14 karat gold . . . three new Elgins whose cases are Callot-designed. One of the greatest style names of Paris, one of its most exclusive houses. . . . Exquisite jewelry, but more than that. Accurate, unfailing, time-true. Paris on the face of it, but each a true American watch at heart. . . . Besides these Callot models there are other Parisiennes both plain and enamel at $35 designed by all the important Paris couturieres. And other diamond watches ascending to the glory of 20 diamonds at $250.”

Callot Soeurs was a long-established House (since 1895,) and their watches are more conservative and less like costume jewelry than the enameled Elgin watches by other designers. In May, Elgin advertised designer watches by Lucien Lelong. They cost $35.00 — no diamonds.

Ad for Elgin watches designed by Lucien Lelong. Delineator, May, 1929.

Ad for Elgin watches designed by Lucien Lelong. Delineator, May, 1929.

You can see the full ad by clicking here. It can be enlarged by clicking here. You can see Elgin watch ads from 1869 to 1972 at Elginwatches.org.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad. Delineator, May 1929.

Two Elgin wristwatches designed by Lelong, 1929 ad. Delineator, May 1929.

The Lelong watches came in “red and blue or black and ivory enamel;” the last watch shown above has a geometric, Art Deco case, but is not enameled. Back in 1928, Elgin sold Designer watches (“Parisiennes”) by several of the most famous couturier houses: Lanvin,  Molyneux, louiseboulanger, Jenny, Agnes (famous for her hats,) and Premet.

Elgin wristwatches designed by Lanvin, Molyneux, and louiseboulanger. Ad, Delineator, Nov. 1928.

Elgin wristwatches designed by Lanvin, Molyneux, and louiseboulanger. Ad, Delineator, Nov. 1928. “New silken thong instead of ribbon” wristband.

Elgin wristwatches designed by Jenny, Agnes, and Premet, Ad, Delineator, Nov. 1928.

Elgin wristwatches designed by Jenny, Agnes, and Premet, Ad, Delineator, Nov. 1928.

$35.00 was a week’s income for a man (or two weeks’ income for a woman) in 1925. (If you have a yen — or many thousands of yen) two of these watches are for sale from Strickland Vintage Watches. The Premet now costs about $1300 and a later version of the Molyneux, about $2000. Browsing through the Strickland collection, I found many lovely things…. They’re not $35.00 any more, of course, but one of these watches in working condition is much rarer now than it was in 1929!

These same six “Parisienne” watches were shown in a color advertisement in the December, 1928, Delineator magazine, along with many other Elgins for men and women. Click here  to see that entire ad in detail. The louiseboulanger watch looks quite different in color! I wish we could see the full color range of all of them. What a collection that would be!

Advertisements

7 Comments

Filed under 1920s, 1920s-1930s, Old Advertisements & Popular Culture, Uncategorized, Vintage Accessories, Vintage Couture Designs

7 responses to “Designer Watches for 1928 and 1929

  1. Fun! I like the Lelong ones. And we think designer branding is a new thing…

  2. Oh, how elegant! These take Art Deco to a whole new level.

  3. I have one very similar, but it is absolutely tiny – like a cocktail watch.

  4. Pingback: Formal Frocks for the Holidays, December 1928 | witness2fashion

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s