42nd Anniversary – Wall Clocks and the Gift of Time

In the words of Leo Christopher, there’s only one thing more precious than our time, and that is who we spend it on. So when it comes to commemorating our partner in life and the years we have spent together, time is exactly what we want to celebrate. Looking back on 42 years, the one feeling most have in common is – time flies.

Humans have been marking time since, well, the beginning of time! By light and dark, shadows and sun, the time has been kept in the most rudimentary ways in its progression to modern-day time telling. The earliest timekeepers used astronomical bodies as they moved across the sky. Ancient Egypt, the Babylonians, the Chinese, and the Greeks used sundials and water clocks.

Imagine trying to get to your first date on time with a water clock! This 42nd anniversary celebration would be highly unlikely, and chances are you wouldn’t be very interested in the evolution of time and clocks. Understanding time and how to record it can be fascinating, so let’s learn a little more about the gift of time.

What was the World’s First Clock?

Detail of Antique Clock

Not quite a wall clock for the home, the first mechanical clocks were built in towers in Italy and Germany from 1270 to 1300 during the Renaissance Period. These clocks did not have hands to tell time but used two weights – one to move the wheels and one to strike the bell to indicate the time.

The time measured this way wasn’t very accurate, but each step was progressing toward mechanical clocks, which allowed time to be measured with increasing accuracy. The ultimate goal of measuring time was to precisely record both incredibly small and incredibly large periods of time with atomic clocks. Not terribly romantic but comes in handy when making dinner reservations or getting everyone to the church on time.

How Does a Clock Work?

There are five components every clock needs to tell time. The inner workings of a clock have been roughly the same since the earliest versions, though some of the physical processes have evolved out of necessity. All modern clocks, including wall clocks, have benefited from the evolution of these processes. Most of us have never wondered what makes a clock tick, but it is actually quite interesting.

5 Parts that Make a Clock Work:

  1. Power source
  2. Oscillator
  3. Controller
  4. Counter chain
  5. Indicator

1. Every clock needs continuous power to run.

Clock Gears

Since every clock needs continuous power to run, it must have a source of power. And in some cases, a secondary source in case of a power outage. Continuous power is the only way we can expect precise and reliable measurements of time.

Mechanical clocks can be powered by weights and chains. An electrical clock can receive power from an outlet or a backup battery. An automatic power source, such as the kinetic power of movement, can generate the movement of small weights or store power in an onboard medium such as a battery, as we have in our wristwatches. Each of these sources power clocks and aid in the measurement of time.

2. The oscillator turns vibrations into time.

A physical harmonic oscillator is the main component of every modern clock. For those who just want to know what time it is and not how to build a clock, that simply means that your wall clock must have readable vibrations that occur in a precisely timed series of pulses that produce an exact passage of time. Translated into fractions of seconds, seconds, minutes, hours, and so on, these good vibrations are the backdrop to the 42 astounding years you have spent with your spouse.

Most Common Oscillators:
  • Mechanical clocks – balance wheel and pendulum
  • Quartz clocks – quartz crystal
  • Atomic clocks - vibrating electrons and atoms

3. The controller captures movement.

The controller captures the oscillator’s movement and converts it into a series of pulses that demonstrates time measurements. Escapement is used in mechanical clocks with wheels and pendulums, while an electronic oscillator circuit generates a series of electrical pulses synchronized with the oscillator. For example, in a wall clock with a pendulum, escapement is demonstrated with the transfer of power in each smooth, steady, consistent swing.

4. The counter chain counts the pulses created by the controller.

San Francisco / Golden Gate Clock, 12" Diameter

Counting each of the pulses created by the controller, the counter chain converts those pulses into measurements of time – seconds, minutes, and hours. The counter chain is proof that time, in fact, doesn’t fly.

This mechanism shows every day of your life has 24 equally pulsed hours, and you fill them to the fullest with the one you love the most. The controller does not, however, disprove that time flies while you are having fun!

5. The indicator visually tells us the time.

Whether it is a shadow in the sand by the sundial or the hands on the face of your favorite wood clock, the indicator displays the results of the work of all the other components – the time. Early clocks signaled the time with bells, digital clocks give us visual displays of the time, and with modern advances, we even have talking clocks that tell us the time out loud.

From water clocks to custom wood clocks, we have come a long way in how we measure time. As time passes, we have a stronger appreciation for how quickly the days turn to months and the months to years. While we do not have the power to speed up or slow down time, we do have the power to spend it with the ones who mean the most. 

What Makes Wall Clocks Special on the 42nd Wedding Anniversary?

Narragansett Bay Clock, 12" Diameter

Wall clocks are a beautiful metaphor for marriage. To successfully work, each component must be in place and working together. What drives the couple is shared in a pulse that runs through their life together and energizes the outcome. The outcome is a message that can be read clearly by all – the first 42 years is only the beginning! Wall clocks are a beautiful way to remind each other that time spent together is precious.

Why Gift a Wall Clock?

A wall clock makes the perfect gift for a 42nd wedding anniversary because it is a reminder of the special day. It can be hung on a wall or placed on a mantel to elevate home décor. Symbolically, you are giving the gift of time. Practically, you are giving a functional gift that is sure to be appreciated.

What are the Benefits of Owning a Wall Clock?

United Kingdom 12 inch Diameter Wood Clock

A wall clock can instantly perk up a room. Even a small clock can make an interesting focal point, and a custom wood clock will open the lines of communication at your next family gathering. Want to liven up your anniversary party? Hang a stunning wood clock of the United Kingdom and let your guests share their travel experiences or dreams of adventure.

Using a wall clock for decoration is a surefire way to make an immediate impact in any size space. And giving your spouse a visual reminder of a thoughtful gift by hanging it in a prominent place can be pretty impactful, too! However, there are a few details to consider when making that wall clock buying decision.

5 Unique Ways to Use a Wall Clock for Maximum Impact:

  1. As a statement piece
  2. For an added pop of color
  3. Instant modernization
  4. Create a gallery wall
  5. As antique home décor

1. Make a statement with the perfect wall clock

Whether you are looking to gift your loved one Hollywood glam or a nautical theme, a wall clock is a simple piece that adds visual appeal to any home design. You can frame a picture of the Hollywood sign in a wall clock lined with lights for a striking glam look. A wood clock shaped like a dolphin is a nautical statement to elevate your new theme with ocean vibes. The perfect statement piece can be the gift that inspires the next 42 years. 

2. Add some color to the room

Martha's Vineyard Clock, 12" Diameter

Whether you have a completely red room or have a white room that needs just one pop of red, a wall clock is a functional and stylish gift to add to the space. All red or just a pop, a large red wall clock on one wall is a great way to bring your gift into your design reality. Framed in red plastic or red wood, the wall clock will bring visual interest to the space while keeping everyone on time.

3. Update a room on a budget

Wall clocks are a classy addition to any space, and you can quickly update a room with a modern clock. Metal clocks with gears and weights are cool, classic, and a little steampunk. A clean space with only the hour and minute hands of a clock on the wall is simple and sophisticated. If modern wall clocks frequently catch your eye, you will not be at a loss for options, bringing home the perfect match for your space – and your spouse. 

4. Create a gallery wall

Wall clocks can be elegant pieces of art and, when beautifully assembled and arranged, can make a stunning gallery wall. Consider creating a wall of custom wood clocks honoring the memories of your travels over the years. When choosing the ultimate 42nd-anniversary wedding gift, is there anything more thoughtful than commemorating your travels with a wood clock gallery display?

5. Family heirlooms are your inheritance

Unique Antique Clock

Not all family heirlooms are antiques. Antique wall clocks may be an exception. There is something particularly comforting about the “tick-tock” of an ancient wall clock. Gathering several of these together in your space pays homage to your family and excites the clock geek that lives deep inside you. It’s okay – it’s out – you’ve been together 42 years, so it’s safe to admit!

How Do I Choose the Perfect Wall Clock?

If you are gifting your spouse a wall clock on your 42nd wedding anniversary, the first and only question to be answered is – what wall clock would your spouse want? From there, it is more a matter of considering where you would want to place it in your home and ensuring it is the right size. However, keep in mind the room’s theme and whether this wall clock will inspire a full redesign of the chosen space.

When choosing the perfect wall clock, consider what materials your spouse prefers. There are many styles of wall clocks made from many materials, but if your spouse favors sustainable solutions, wood clocks are the way to go. 

Wood Clocks are Elegant and Sustainable

Maui Clock, 12" Diameter

Just like your marriage, custom wood clocks are built to last forever. The materials are sustainable and durable, creating a gift that will last for years. Likely, wood clocks will be just the start of your Wood Chart obsession. As you collect wood charts to commemorate your travels and add to your stunning wood clock collection, you will wonder which wedding anniversary will be appropriate for a cribbage board, serving tray, or cork map.

Wood Clocks Symbolize Life

Clocks symbolize our life to some extent. Every minute is precious, and living each day to the fullest is important. There is beauty to be found within each minute of our day, and that time is made even more meaningful by the people we share time with. Forty-two years of marriage is no small feat and should be regarded as an amazing accomplishment and celebrated as the beginning of the next chapter.

A high-quality wood clock is a beautiful addition to your home décor. As a steadfast keeper of time, this clock will remind you to slow down and experience each moment. As a piece of art, this wood clock will remind you of the beauty yet to be experienced together.

As the gift you give or receive on your 42nd wedding anniversary, this wood clock will become a piece of your story, and with each tick of the escapement on the wheel, you will be reminded that your story is just beginning.

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