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In the midst of the digital age we’re living in, analog watches are making a comeback in all sorts of fashion circles. Here in Raleigh, we have local watch company O.A.C. City Watches bringing us an updated, modern version of the prized antique watches of the past. These watches offer a vintage look with a chic, contemporary feel that lends an air of sophistication to almost any outfit, for any situation.
Mike Ciampa, the founder of O.A.C. City Watches, came up with the designs for the company while searching for a watch of his own. Working with a manufacturer, Ciampa devised his ideal watch design, then added in his own logos and branding to mass manufacture them for consumers this spring.
The brand has since taken off, with three models for sale on the company’s website and hints of another model in the works. The watches come in three different designs: Uptown, Midtown and Downtown, each with a night and day variation that tweaks the color of the watches’ strap, case and clock face. Ciampa says that each watch design is inspired by the lifestyles common in the city’s respective areas and the types of people that frequent these areas. Although the watch designs were initially geared toward young professionals at an affordable price point, Ciampa says a variety of demographics have taken to the watches.
“In today’s society where so much is going on, it’s the simplicity of them, along with a classic and modern feel, that really makes them stand apart,” says Ciampa. “It’s really clean, sleek and easy to look at it, and it goes with a lot of different things.”
The name of the brand, O.A.C., comes from the first name initials of Ciampa’s two daughters, Olive and Cocoa, and also ties into Raleigh’s title of “the city of oaks”. Additionally, the “V” on the watch face that replaces the “5” comes from his wife’s name, Victoria.
The watches are technically unisex, according to Ciampa, but he says the watch bands tend to run large, so may be too big for smaller female wrists. But you’re in luck, ladies: Ciampa says he hopes to design a line of watches specifically tailored for women in the future.
O.A.C. City Watches can be purchased online, on the company’s website. Since the watches come straight from the manufacturer, removing any additional costs, the designs are priced affordably, from $55-$75. The watches are also available at special Shop Local Raleigh events, where local vendors gather to sell their unique products to the community.
No matter how old you are or what you consider your style to be, O.A.C. City Watches are sure to provide you and any other Raleighite with a dependable modern accessory to complete your outfit. Check them out at oaccitywatches.com.
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