Collection of Tiny Vintage Wrist Watches.

I love sharing the stories behind each of my treasured heirlooms. This collection of tiny little wrist watches are ones I gathered from the "leftovers" of my grandmother's jewelry box. Many of them have bands that were broken over the years, some of them have stopped working, and others still just need a good wind or a new battery to breathe new life into them.

Collection of tiny vintage wrist watches / heirloomed

For the past decade or so oversized watches have been on trend. It's easy to say these little gems have been tucked away just waiting for their time (no pun intended...) and place to make an appearance again.

I always remember my Grandma wearing these tiny elastic watches that simply stretched over her hand. The collection ranges from perfectly functional and utilitarian Timex varieties to teeny, intricately designed watches with little floral details. A far cry from the overly-digital watches we're used to today that can not only tell time but also the weather, notify you of your latest text and change the channel on the TV. Pros and cons, I suppose.

engraved vintage wrist watch / heirloomed style
engraved vintage wrist watch / heirloomed style

One of my favorite finds among this treasure trove were the thoughtful engravings that several of the watches have on their backside. Interestingly, two were dated 1945, one my Great Grandmother (Nana's) and one my Grandma's. "AMM / XMAS / '45" reads my Nana's watch. Her first name was Alma, a name I love still for today, and the tiny face on the watch could only handle her initials. I can imagine her opening it up on Christmas morning, a gift I can only assume she received from my Great Grandfather. My Grandmother's watch is a bit larger and more of an everyday look, with her full name Cecile R. Longley.

collection of vintage heirloom wrist watches / heirloomed jewelry

The collection is a treasure and I keep toying with exactly what to do with them. As you know, I think it's a shame to just have them sit in a box. I love the collection together so I've thought of having them all made into one piece of jewelry, like a bracelet or necklace of some sort.

But more than anything I'd love to restore a few of them, especially those with the engravings, so that I can rotate them into my everyday wardrobe. I most certainly see the opportunity for the tiny wrist watch to stake its claim again, trendspotters beware. I'm calling this one and can dream of designing a little vintage-inspired collection of these tiny watches for today's "it-girl."

small vintage wrist watch / heirloomed style

Love to know what you think of the vintage wrist-watch. Do you have any in your collection? Do you see this being a trend we can all get on board with? #HEIRLOOMED


heirloomed is a lifestyle brand with a mission of "keeping heirlooms around for another generation." Our blog features stories about family recipes, creating traditions with your family, interior design and entertaining by mixing new and vintage pieces, classic style, and small town + historic travel. Our shop features a collection of "goods inspired by the past, for generations to enjoy" with an array of products and meaningful gifts including linen aprons, tabletop linens, art, ceramics and beyond. Learn more at www.heirloomedcollection.com.

HOW TO MAKE : Family Photo + Recipe Book.

Like many of us, I have a whole shelf in my kitchen loaded with big, beautiful cookbooks. But the one book that people ask me about the most is the tiniest one on the shelf.

Flipping through old family photos and recipes / heirloomed

That book -- handmade and so obviously a stand-out among the large books on the shelf --  is full of photos and recipes that define my life, lives of relatives before me, and now the lives of my own children. I was so fortunate to have inherited stacks and stacks of my grandmother and great grandmother's recipe cards. Some are handwritten, some were written by typewriter. Almost every one of them is faded, stained and spilled upon. They contain some of the family's favorite recipes along with others that I'd never even heard of. 

Nana's Pie Crust Handwritten Recipe Card / DIY Recipe Book / heirloomed

I love looking through them and seeing the old, beautiful ink handwriting. You can tell which recipes were favorites just based on how dirty they are, and the little notes my grandmother left on the card show you the process she went through to perfect them. 

This project began as a way to celebrate my grandmother's life after she passed. I made one of the books for every member of our family, along with a jar of her signature chocolate sauce, to ensure that everyone had a little piece of her + her favorite things after she was gone.

Creating this recipe and photo book is a unique way of celebrating family traditions and is so much fun to put together. You often hear the stories of family recipes like these, but seeing the recipe side by side with photos of the family member who perfected it makes for a special experience and a meaningful connection. I love thinking that my own kids will inherit this book one day, and hopefully add their own stories, recipes and photos to it. 

old family recipe card and DIY photo book / heirloomed

This project makes a great gift around the holidays, or for a special occasion like a wedding (or a funeral!) when words just aren’t enough. Although it may seem like an undertaking to create and compile, it's an undertaking that I loved doing and learning from.

One tip: I recommend doing this “early” in the sense that it's important to talk to your grandparents or parents when they are around to tell you the stories, share the recipes and their memories of them, and write them in their own handwriting. This is especially essential if a recipe doesn’t already exist in writing. Let them sift through their old photos with you so that they can connect the dots between the people, the stories and the recipes. Hearing their tips and tricks for making the recipe is a crucial part of the process as well, and it truly allows these heirlooms to live on as you'll be able to recreate the dishes exactly as you remember them.

I recommend this project to anyone looking to explore and preserve their family traditions + stories. My book sits neatly next to my cookbooks and my recipe card box in the pantry and brings a smile to my face every time it catches my eye.

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heirloomed is a lifestyle brand with a mission of "keeping heirlooms around for another generation." Our blog features stories about family recipes, creating traditions with your family, interior design and entertaining by mixing new and vintage pieces, classic style, and small town + historic travel. Our shop features a collection of "goods inspired by the past, for generations to enjoy" with an array of products and meaningful gifts including linen aprons, tabletop linens, art, ceramics and beyond. Learn more at www.heirloomedcollection.com.