7th September 2018




It's been a momentous week in our house. Our eldest Archie started senior school on Tuesday. Archie is 11 and almost impossible to communicate with. We only see signs of life when the words 'it's time to turn the X-Box off now' are uttered.


Mabel, our feistiest child turned 5 and started school on the same day. She was mostly just excited about being allowed to take sweets to school to share with her class for her birthday. Our middle daughter, whose name I can't quite remember, has been forgotten about completely in the all the fun (also read, chaos and disorder!)


Life and work have structure and routine again now the kids are back at school. I am currently designing around 40 new pieces for clients in the run up to Christmas. A mammoth and time consuming task. One I am loving. Time is ticking you know. Only 108 days to go.  


Enjoy The Brillianteer and feel free to get in touch. 




My Top Dream Watches

'The rules are simple' he said 'you have an unlimited budget to go and buy any 5 watches you want.' I asked for some time, this decision needed consideration. These 5 ultimately are what I came up with. What do you think?


Patek Phillipe Aquanaut 5168G-001 - in my opinion the most beautiful watch ever made. I love it. Everything about it. Launched at Basel 2017 this was an instant hit and completely sold out with pre-orders. Trying to get hold of one is impossible. My unlimited budget would take a dent of around £30,000. I'm not too concerned about that. 

Rolex Daytona - 116500LN - I know, I can hear the doubters already grumbling. The fact is this watch needs to be in any serious collection. This is a seriously good-looking watch and beautifully engineered. I know dull and ugly men who have bought this watch and become international sex symbols. I'd have to pull some strings to buy it for the £9,100 as the waiting list is currently 268 years.


Blancpain - Villeret - 6670-3642-55B - I believe there is a by-law that requires the man with the ultimate watch collection to own a gold cased, leather strapped dress watch. This is my choice. I love the classic styling and the watchmaking heritage other brands would kill for. Granted, I might only wear it for funerals, but at £29,280 it would give me so much pleasure.

The Graff Star Grand Date - Now, it takes a man who is very comfortable in his own skin to wear a diamond set watch. I'd be comfortable if it meant sporting this beauty. Of course, we are still in the parish of dress watches, but if one is to dons one's dinner suit this is the very best timepiece to wear with it. My hero and inspiration, Mr Graff delivers an outstanding watch, a snip at £38,000.

Raymond Weil - Parsifal - The house is on fire, I only have time to take one watch from my collection with me. My Raymond Weil Parsifal, worth less than £500, is the only one I am taking with me. Given to me by my dad on my 21st birthday, it means the world to me. The watch shows heavy signs of wear and tear, as does the owner, but it is more valuable than the others put together.


'....but I thought diamonds were supposed to be indestructible?'


Everybody knows that diamonds are extremely hard. It is a common phrase to hear that "diamonds are the hardest known material to man!" and indeed, diamond as a substance, is the hardest known natural material. 


What that doesn't mean though, is that diamonds are indestructible.


Diamonds can be broken, damaged, fractured, chipped and cracked, like every other precious gemstone. Every jeweller sees damaged or broken diamonds on a regular basis and there is sometimes an uncomfortable conversation when a client brings in a piece of jewellery with a damaged diamond. 


The sad fact is that accidents do happen and jewellery and gemstones, including diamonds, can and are, frequently damaged.


Two things that have no bearing on the situation are the value of the piece, or how long a person has worn it for. The point that the wearer may not know how the damage occurred is also irrelevant.   


Jewellery and watches come into contact with other hard and sharp objects, sometimes without us realising and sometimes with tremendous force. This can understandably result in damage occurring. 


Minimising The Risk

Not wearing your diamond jewellery is the only way to guarantee it is never damaged, and that is ridiculous. Jewellery is designed to be worn and enjoyed and so instead, we can try and minimise the risk of damage.


1. Remove jewellery before doing any gym work, heavy lifting or manual work.  

2. Be mindful of things you do that involve contact with other metals and harsh chemicals. 

3. Have your settings regularly checked by a professional.


The fact that diamonds can be damaged should not put anybody off wearing jewellery. Diamonds should be celebrated and worn with pride.


If accidental damage does occur, seek out a good jeweller who may be able to offer some solutions, such as having the diamond re-polished, re-set or replaced.

And another thing, make sure you are adequately insured. The likelihood is you will never need to claim, but if damage does occur, you will be glad you took out the right insurance policy.


We recommend specialist jewellery insurer T H March, but shop around and see which insurer is best for you.



Some Authorised Rolex Dealers, in an effort to cut down watches being bought and re-sold immediately, are retaining warranty cards for 12 months as part of the sale. By doing so it makes the watch far harder to sell as the paperwork is incomplete. 


It is hardly a secret several Authorised Dealers in Spain, Greece, Italy and other EU countries are supplying hundreds of new Rolex to traders and retailers in the UK. The rules in the UK are far stricter for Authorised Dealers. It seems to me that if Rolex were really keen on stamping out the second-hand market they would come down hard on these stockists. 



Four years ago our life was badly shaken. My wife's mum Jane, was diagnosed with Vascular Dementia. She very rapidly deteriorated and now needs round the clock care in a specialist care centre. Jane has no bodily function, she is unable to communicate and has no quality of life. 


To help with her grieving Sarah started writing. Her blog 'My Crazy Mum' is now one of the most well read blogs on Alzheimers and Dementia in the UK.


I am so proud of my beautiful wife. She has remained superbly strong through this quite horrid and upsetting illness. 


This weekend Sarah is running the Great North Run. This is the third year she is raising money for the Alzheimer's Society. 


To find out more and to read Sarah's blog please visit: and to donate visit: sarah-justgiving.

Thank you.