5 November 2009

Grays November Issue

Grays Christmas Shopping Party
3rd December 2009



To kick off the Christmas season, Grays is once again hosting its ever popular Late Night Shopping Party. Avoid the high-street madness and join us after work for a glass of bubbly and some festive entertainment. Explore one of London’s largest antique treasure troves and return home with fabulous gifts you know your family and friends will love for years to come.

Grays’ Late Night Christmas Shopping Party is sure to make a very enjoyable and alternative Christmas shopping experience. It is the only opportunity of the year to shop after hours in this genteel antiques centre and, if that is not enough, Grays will be open right up until Christmas Eve!

For your complimentary invitation please call 020 7629 7034 or email info@graysantiques.com.

Dealer Highlight: Himiko



Nestled amongst the showcases in the Mews is dealer Himiko, offering an eclectic yet affordable range of Japanese and Chinese antiques. Trading at Grays for almost a year but trading independently for eight, she visits Japan regularly to stock up her showcase.

From intricate and elegant Kimono’s to beautiful carved authentic netsukes, she showcases a wide range of traditional Oriental antiques. Accompanying these Himiko offers some smaller items including silver charms, brooches and unusual picture frames perfect for that unique Christmas gift.

Visit her stand A23-B17 downstairs in the basement at 1-7 Davies Mews.


Antique of the Month: Watches and Timepieces

While some are auspicious enough to have a precious watch or timepiece passed down to them by a previous generation, others look for a vintage or antique watch as a way to articulate their individuality and find something distinctive that you won’t see anywhere else.


Contemporary Gents Rolex Submariner Watch, POA, from JUS Watches

After a wedding band, watches are probably one of the most significant pieces of jewellery a man can own. That’s why it is essential to find a watch or timepiece that is personal to you, will hold its value over time and maybe even become an heirloom to be passed on in the future.

There are so many reasons why you should choose a vintage or antique watch or timepiece. Some people find the inner mechanics captivating; others enjoy the individuality of the piece, the beauty in the quality craftsmanship, or the history they may hold.


Early 19th Century Swiss Quarter Repeating Verge, Circa 1810, POA, from Pieces of Time.

At Grays we are fortunate to be able to boast a selection of highly experienced watch dealers who are all experts in their field.


Rolex Daytona Watch with Black Dial, POA, from Second Time Around.

Grays are also lucky to have full service maintenance and repair shop on site, Second Time Round. With over 20 years experience they have an expert watchmaker who specialises in all types of watches from Swiss wristwatches to complicated timepieces.


Gents 1940s Patek Philippe Wristwatch, £6500 from P. Crylin & Co.

1950s Classic Style Longines Gents Watch, POA, from Timespec.

Top Tips for Buying an Antique Watch or Timepiece

1. Do the basic research: Look at various makes and models of watches to be sure to find something that’s right for you in both style and budget.

2. Always buy from a reputable dealer. Look to see if they belong to a professional trade organisation. They should also be able to give you a certificate of authenticity from the watch manufacturer.

3. View your watch as an investment and look for brands that will hold their value over time. Rolex, Patek, Phillippe, Breitling and Omega are good quality, vintage brands. There are still others that are worth buying however so don’t feel you have to stick to these.

4. Ask for original documentation that came with the watch when it was first manufactured as this can add great value, especially if it includes original serial numbers.

5. Find a good watch repair service that can regularly service and, if worse comes to worst repair your watch. It is important to find a reputable place, as vintage and antique watches have been made with a different quality and type of craftsmanship to modern pieces. You should look to service your watch every two years.


1980s 18ct Gold Ladies Cartier Watch, £2000, from Regal Time


To browse Grays vast range of watches and timepieces please click here and search 'watch'.


Showcase of the Month: Aid A Sale Ltd.



Maggie St. Claire, an established showcase dealer at Grays has recently expanded her showcase collection. Trading as Aid A Sale, she stocks a diverse assortment of antiques and collectables. From stunning 1920s compacts, tobacco cases, pin cushions and original bakelite telephones to a large range of collectable treen pieces, Maggie has an excellent choice of objects that would make superb Christmas gifts!

Find Aid A Sale in Showcases FS3 & FS4 in Grays Mews.

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