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Trend Alert – How To Wear A Pocket Watch | Watch Hut

Published: 15-02-2018

Rotary Pocket Skeleton Mechanical Watch MP00726/01

Pocket skeleton mechanical watch (RRP £149) by Rotary

The pocket watch played a significant part in making timekeeping fashionable, and this iconic accessory is rising in the fashion stakes once again.

The pocket watch's vintage identity makes it an ideal choice if you're a fan of classic styling. We tell you everything you need to know about how to wear a pocket watch and showcase some of our favourite designs.

History of the pocket watch

The earliest record of the pocket watch was the Nuremburg Egg in the 16th century, which resembled a heavy sphere with a long chain and just one hand. It was commonly worn around the neck as a pendant, or carried in a bag.

Notoriously inaccurate, it was considered a novelty fashion item for the very rich and was worn for its signature design rather than timekeeping. Over the years, the Nuremburg Egg evolved into a smaller pocket watch form, but it still only had a single hour hand.

It all changed in the 17th century when German watch-maker Peter Henlein launched a more accurate, spring-loaded design. The revived pocket watch featured extra wheels to reduce the amount of times it needed to be wound and included jewels such as rubies to minimise the wear on mechanical parts. The pocket watch soon rose in popularity.

As time went on, the it became a practical accessory for the working class, with railroad workers becoming highly dependent on timekeeping accuracy as an essential tool for their jobs.

The way the pocket watch was worn transitioned with the times, too. When tailored clothing became popular, people started wearing pocket watches in the front pockets of their waistcoats.

Today, pocket watches are seen as a sophisticated accessory, worn by those who like to stand out from the crowd. Their association as a collector's item also makes them a symbol of quality.

How to wear a pocket watch

Now you know a pocket watch's historical roots, let's get on to the most important part: how to wear one. It's an accessory that can be worn in many different ways, depending on its design and attachment:

  • Belt loop

This is probably the most practical design of them all. The use of the lobster-claw clip means you can easily attach it to your belt and then secure the watch in your pocket.

  • Bolt ring

The bolt ring is the traditional version of the belt loop. It is worn in exactly the same way, but uses a bolt ring instead of a clip to secure the pocket watch chain in place.

  • T-bar chains

The T-bar is designed to slot through the buttonhole of your waistcoat or jacket. The idea is that the buttonhole will secure the bar in place. You can then place the pocket watch in the front pocket.

Need some inspiration on which pocket watch to choose? We've whittled down our favourite pocket watches to help you find the perfect accessory.

Budget pocket watches

Limit Pocket Watch 6200.90

Limit pocket watch (RRP £19.99)

If you're on the hunt for a small pocket watch that's light to carry around, this compact pocket watch (£19.99) by Limit is a great contender. It features a lobster-claw clip, so you can attach it to your clothing with ease.

Powered by analogue quartz movement, precision is at its core and it also features a handy date function. Great with jeans and a t-shirt, this everyday timepiece would work best attached to a belt.

Sekonda Watch 4365

Sekonda pocket watch (RRP £29.99)

This statement white fob-style watch (RRP £29.99) by Sekonda is an ideal accessory for elevating your outfit with minimal effort. Team with an all-black outfit to make it pop – monochrome done easy.

Mid-range pocket watches

Woodford Nickel Free Nurses Fob Watch WF1219

Woodford Nurses' Fob watch (RRP £55)

This stylish nickel-free Nurses' fob watch from Woodford (RRP £55) is a good everyday option. Traditionally worn upside down on the top of a nurse's uniform, it scores points on the hygiene scale as its clever design means you can tell the time without having to touch the watch. It's also nickel-free, making it an ideal choice for sensitive skin.

Limit Centenary Collection Watch 5893.90

Limit Centenary Collection watch (£39.99)

Bring vintage charm to your outfit with the Centenary Collection watch (RRP £39.99) by Limit. Roman numerals add to the traditional feel, and it features a date window above the 6th numeral. It also comes with a chain, which you can loop through your waistcoat to style up your suit on special occasions.

Luxurious pocket watches

Woodford Pocket Mechanical Watch WF1040

Woodford pocket mechanical watch (RRP £85)

The pocket mechanical watch (RRP £85) by Woodford epitomises contemporary cool. Featuring stand-out white numerical hour markers and sleek hands, the back of the case is also suitable for engraving if you're looking to buy it as a special gift for someone. The black face lends a metropolitan vibe, making it an ideal pairing for a smart-casual outfit.

Woodford Half Hunter Skeleton Mechanical Watch WF1078

Woodford Half Hunter skeleton mechanical watch (RRP £150)

Featuring a transparent front, which showcases the intricate inner workings of its skeleton movement, this Half Hunter watch (RRP £150.00) from Woodford oozes old-worldly charm. It's water resistant and can be fastened to your belt using its detachable silver strap.

Pocket watches are a classic accessory that will instantly add a touch of vintage cool to your outfit. Browse our full collection of pocket watches for more inspiration.

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