UP TO THE MINUTE
ew York City gallery
owner Edward Faber
started collecting vintage
watches sort of by acci-
dent about 10 years ago.
"We are a design
gallery that specializes in
twentieth century jew-
elry," he explains. "One day, a dealer
came in with a presentation of collect-
ible wristwatches. 'Go away,' I told him.
'We sell jewelry— not watches. ' "
The dealer persisted.
"I told him to stop making a nuisance
of himself, and I selected about a dozen
of his watches," Faber continues. "In
about three weeks, I sold every one of
Today, although The Aaron Faber
Gallery, which Faber co-owns with his
wife, Patricia, is still primarily a gallery
of contemporary jewelry, its collection
of vintage timepieces is unquestionably
among the most extensive in the coun-
try. They reportedly sold $1 million in
watches last year, and expect to add a
half-million to that figure by this year's
In addition, Faber and Stewart
Unger, owner of the Madison Avenue
shop Time Will Tell, have co-authored
the book, American Wristwatches: Five
Decades of Style and Design.
BY CHUCK BENNETT
watches is the current
craze. Ed Faber, who
sold $1 million of them
last year in his New
York gallery, tells
which are best.
Faber says he was amazed at the de-
mand and interest in collectible
"It usually begins when somebody
stumbles across their grandad's watch
packed away somewhere in the attic,"
he says. "Something like that usually
fuels the interest."
He further classifies collectors as
mostly middle to upper class men bet-
ween the ages of 25 and 60.
"The collector usually has a great
sense of style," he adds. "He realizes
that he can't wear his art or his cars,
and in most cases, he has to be con-
servative in business, and can't wear
flashy diamond rings or gold chains."
In lieu of these things, people have
turned to the watch as a symbol of
power and success. It has been
boardroom — ten "players" at the board
table wearing $13,000 gold Rolex
Presidents. Player number eleven sets
himself miles apart from the others by
sporting a collectible timepiece, perhaps
a $600,000 Patek Philippe Tourbillion
that he purchased in an auction at
Patek Philippe, by the way, is the
best watch "in the world," according to
Faber. "Audemars Piguet and Vacheron
and Constantin are also historically fine