My journey to personal style refinement

When it comes to investment pieces like jewelry and watches, I always choose the safest, cleanest, most elegant look. The earring, bracelet or watch that I can wear everyday and with everything. Or that "good" piece that I reserve only for special occasions. I apply this criteria because I suffer from a bit of undiagnosed, sensory-overload ADD. I don't know if this condition actually exists, and in this case, I refuse to look it up on Wikipedia. I know I have it, and that's that.

What are the symptoms? Well let's see. The more fantastical, colorful, impractical and, usually, the more expensive an item, the more I like it. And, it doesn't help that ever since I have known my husband he has said things like, "if you are going to get that bag, don't get it in black, get it in red or mint green." I guess [it] is an older cousin to the "like a kid in a candy store" syndrome. But the problem is that after about 26 seconds, the object usually looses its luster and I am on to the next thing. I know, this is not a rare condition. That many of you out there probably suffer from it too. But where is the personal value, the sentimentality of a piece if you are constantly spinning from object to object like an out of control tea cup? For me it is often dizzying and highly dissatisfying. So over the years, as a way to refine my acquisitions, I have developed a habit of only purchasing important pieces based on these practical criteria.

But while working on a recent accessories project, I came across this Vacheron Constantin stunner. Named Matsu to tsuru, the Pine Tree and Crane, it is from the "Métiers d'Art- La symbolique des laques" collection, Vacheron Constantin's latest collaboration in their ongoing quest to combine watchmaking and decorative techniques. The decorative technique here is Maki-e, a laquer art that is achieved by delicately sprinkling gold or silver dust over lacquer while it is still wet.

Upon seeing it I thought: "Wow this is really special. I could wear this. No, it doesn't go with everything I own, but it doesn't matter. Gosh it's pretty." The more I looked at it, the more I fell for it. The pine tree and crane motif extremely attractive to me, a personal symbol of All the Pretty Birds? With my purchase criteria stripping away as fast as that out of control tea cup, I realized with striking clarity that this watch (I don't know if I can even dream of affording it) was something that I came to love based on my years of restraint, my exposure to fashion, at all levels, and my personal style growth. If I could purchase it, it wouldn't be because it's "the" status piece. It would be because I just find it really beautiful!

I have reached another stage on my journey to personal style refinement. With this newly acquired knowledge, I will go and search out something that I can afford. Valentine's day is almost here! Sweet dreams. Tamu