A $2000 Retro Swatch Watch? Believe it.
By James Grahame
Swiss watchmakers ran into serious trouble in the 1970s. The nation had enjoyed decades as the world's preeminent source of wristwatches, but the world shifted dramatically with the introduction of high quality timepieces from Japan. It was suddenly fashionable to wear a wafer-thin Seiko with a quartz movement, and the arrival of digital LED and LCD watches made traditional mechanical movements seem quaint and inexplicably expensive.
The Swiss fought back by creating the revolutionary Swatch. The first series of twelve Swatches were introduced in 1983 and rapidly took the world by storm because of their bold styling and affordability. It was suddenly possible to own a genuine Swiss-made watch for a mere 50 Swiss Francs. The company managed to make analog timepieces trendy once again by incorporating an ingeniously simplified mechanism within a precision made plastic shell. The Swatch Group gradually grew to encompass over a dozen brands including Omega, Longines, Tissot, and famed Swiss movement manufacturer ETA.
The Swatch brand had its heyday in the late 1980s, and many people are starting to recognize the appeal of "retro" swatches. Squiggly Swatch Watches offers a fascinating assortment of brand new and new old stock vintage Swatches, although you should expect to pay as much as 1400 euros for a rare 1983 "new in box" model. Slightly more common designs from the early 1990s sell for around 50 euros.
Squiggly Swatch Watches [thanks, Karen!]