The Best Cartier Collection

I love one brand collections, they are the perfect amount of frivolous, and limited that make theoretical collections super fun, so I was thinking this week, I should get a bit crazy. Why not do a “perfect” Cartier only collection. Now since its Cartier most of the watches do kinda look the same, but the almost subtle differences are really different so the variety in a collection like this is actually pretty good. As usual all photos on wrist are from me, the rest are from the brand’s website.

First is the dress watch, and while every Cartier is a dress watch, I like the Ballon Bleu de Cartier the most. I would wear the 33 mm because it just feels right to get the smallest size, and I have tried it on, it is absolutely brilliant. First of all it is an integrated watch, but its not insanely sporty and it’s this pebble shape with the crown guard fully covering the crown. I think the shape and size is absolutely perfect, it’s a bit wacky but it is also super restrained which might be good for the price.

Any collecter worth their debt needs a dive watch, luckily Cartier has one in their Pasha de Cartier line. This watch doesn’t have the bezel marked, but it is still pretty thick it has a water resistanc rating of 10 bar (100 meters) and the crown is screwed down, sort of, the crown cap is screwed down, so it counts as a dive watch enough for me. Still more of a dress watch than any other dive watch, it has weird lugs and an exhibition case back so you can see the dissapointingly utilitarian decorated movement, if there is one benefit to this watch its the thinness, at 9.4 mm it wont be nearly as chunky as other dive watches might be, while also being less useful, hey, ya win some ya lose some.

Now on to one of my favorite watches of all time, the Santos de Cartier. Originally a pilots watch I think it fits all of my boxes, or at least most of my boxes perfectly. It is sporty, with a primarily brushed surface save for the polished bezel and chamfeurs, a good size at least on the medium model and a little touch of funky. It has fake screws all over it that just look great, this art deco-ish roman numeral dial, obviously heat blued hands and even a little Cartier cabachon crystal on the crown. Everything on this watch just works so well for me and I hope someday I will own one. 

Sure all the Cartier’s have white dials, heat blued hands and a stainless steel case, but it’s a tried and true style, also typically the cheapest Cartier’s one can get. The variety is enough for me for most situations. The real problem is the value, and that’s because luxury isn’t about value, its about price and design and whatever other bullshit we can come up with. Even then, I’ll be honest, luxury stuff never feels like luxury, it all feels premium and definitely a step up from like Tissot or Seiko or something, but just not enough, diminishing returns hit hard I guess.