Some of the coolest memories that I have from my childhood involve the Swatch watch. Yes, the Swatch watch. Those affordable and sometimes insanely colorful plastic watches that were uber popular in the 80s and 90s. My parents own a small watch and jewelry store (now you know why my name is Tiffany) and when I was growing up that jewelry store was my second home. If there was a day off from school, if I was sick or if I had a vacation break you would find me at their jewelry store in Chinatown, New York.
I didn’t just run around the store like a crazy kid, I actually had to work. From the age of 7 or 8, I would help my parents set up the store, close it down and even help out the customers. I can only imagine how cute it must’ve been to see a 7 year old doing math on a calculator and then negotiating the price with a customer. 🙂 When I was a bit older, my parents agreed to give me a small wage, I think it was like $5.00 a day or something, to work in the store.
Around 1991, Swatches became supremely popular amongst collectors and we couldn’t keep them in stock. Happy Fish, Rollerball, Gulp!, Hocus Pocus… I knew all the Swatches by name and loved all the foreign tourists who would come in to purchase them. Some limited edition Swatch watches could only be purchased at official Swatch stores and my parents would bundle me up in the wee hours of the morning to go wait with them in line when the stores opened. We usually went to the Swatch store at South Street Seaport since it was close by but there were times where we would visit different Swatch stores around the city. My parents loved collecting Swatches too. We would sell what we bought but my mom would always make sure to keep one or two of the special ones for ourselves. Since my parents were authorized dealers, we were once invited to a special Swatch party at the Puck Building in New York. I was the youngest person there and it was my first ‘Cool New York’ party. They had contortionists dressed in white unitards on podiums who would slowly pose to the music and I believe that we were some of the first people to see Stomp performed in the US. I wish smart phones existed back then, lol.
During this time, I convinced my parents to allow me to trade in my weekly work wage for one Swatch watch a week. I wanted to build my own beautiful Swatch watch collection. My parents thought it was a good idea because prior to this I had been spending my money on New Kids on the Block trading cards and comic books. 🙂 I only allowed myself to wear a few of the watches on a regular basis. Sometimes even two at a time on one arm! But the majority of the watches, I kept in their boxes untouched in a box in my room. I amassed quite a collection and for years I refused to part with them.
The Swatch watch holds a dear place in my childhood memories. I really wish that they would make a big comeback. The watches are still priced well and they are all so unique and beautiful. You can really show off your individual style rather than follow the flock when you decide to wear a Swatch.
Remember that wish list that I made on my first blog post? The first 5 wishes on that list, in some way, shape or form, unfortunately need money to fulfill them.
Here it is again to jog your memories:
I want to pay off all my debt.
I want to save up for the small wedding and honeymoon that I never had.
I want to help my parents stay in their home and help them with their bills.
I want to start saving to have a baby.
These wishes are very important to me and I want to see them fulfilled. So I have to decided to start selling off my things to make them come true. And yes folks, this involves my beautiful Swatch collection. While they hold a dear place in my memories, I’ve decided that with the proceeds of the items that I sell, I can make new memories for myself.
If you would like to support my endeavors, please visit my auctions here:
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Just a few of my favorite Swatch Watches: