As soon as once more, it’s time for the aBlogtoWatch group to take inventory and share the watches we wore most this 12 months. Whereas we didn’t get to socialize fairly as a lot as we’d have hoped in 2021, social media and websites like aBlogtoWatch saved watch fanatics buzzing, amassing, and sharing. A typical theme appears to be that 2021 was a little bit of a “carryover 12 months” after 2020 however that doesn’t imply the watches had been any much less enjoyable, even when we’d wished for a number of extra alternatives to put on them in additional social settings. With out additional ado, listed below are the watches the aBlogtoWatch group wore most in 2021 and, after all, we’d love to listen to what you wore essentially the most, so please share within the feedback.
In some ways, 2021 was a carry-over from 2020 by way of having a “pandemic focus” on what I wore that valued utility over visibility. As 2021 continued and extra social alternatives introduced themselves, I discovered myself making a welcome return to creative/emotional watches versus merely sensible ones. Dive and military-style watches had been typical of what I wore when nobody was round, however as I returned to socializing, I discovered new curiosity in carrying “assertion watches” (although I discovered myself double-wristing it with a mechanical watch on one wrist and an Apple Watch on the opposite far more usually than in earlier years). These assertion items took the type of carrying bright-colored watches and people with enjoyable pop-culture parts to them. I vacillate between so many timepieces that it could not be doable to single out any specific watch, but when it was enjoyable and colourful (and in my possession), I used to be in all probability carrying it rather a lot this final 12 months.
It’s not new, and it’s not significantly on-trend, however this late 90s Chopard L.U.C Quattro 16/1863 was, by far, the watch I wore most this 12 months. It took a good deal of looking to seek out this one, however wow, it was value it. The Quattro 16/1863 was the model’s second launch underneath the then-new L.U.C manufacture again in 1998 (or so), and it’s about as near good as a watch can get. In a 38mm white gold case with blue Metalem dial and the Geneva Seal caliber 1.98 manual-wind Quattro motion, the 1863 is what horological goals are made from.
Coincidentally, it’s the twenty fifth anniversary of Chopard opening the L.U.C manufacture, and the truth that the Quattro continues to be in manufacturing is a testomony to the Scheufele household’s funding on this horological endeavor. Whereas the 43mm case the Quattro is now housed in is a bit too giant for my style, I perceive the place modern tastes lie. Luckily, for me, a bit endurance and a cautious eye in the marketplace allowed me to scoop up what I consider is L.U.C at its finest.
That is simple: it was the Ulysse Nardin Freak X, a watch that stayed with me for a lot of months after we revealed this assessment. Why was it my most worn watch in 2021? It’s easy: When you have a Ulysse Nardin Freak in the home (whichever model), you put on it. The Freak each conceptually and stylistically represents a cornerstone in fashionable watch design historical past, as it’s the first actually outrageous watch to have launched the crazy-creative world of haute horlogerie we all know and recognize in the present day. A whole bunch of improbable mechanical ideas have come for the reason that Freak, however the Freak stays a contemporary watchmaking unique. I liked having it as my go-to every day wearer for a number of months.
I’ve lengthy held the assumption that the Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris was a quietly wonderful, however barely quirky watch that perhaps simply wanted a number of extra minutes within the oven previous to its launch in 2018, the place it wasn’t precisely greeted with open arms (lukewarm reactions to the design, adopted by an premature recall all however killed this one for the fanatic neighborhood). Nicely, on the finish of final 12 months, JLC quietly launched the Polaris Mariner — a fully beautiful blue-dialed reference that feels each bit as a lot a mea culpa as it’s a nice huge “F-U” to everybody who mentioned that JLC was now not able to making a correct dive watch. With a totally up to date motion (together with an influence reserve that doesn’t stop), 300 meters of water resistance, and a blue degradé dial so huge you’ll need the Coast Guard on pace dial, the Mariner is, in some ways, proof that JLC listened to the neighborhood, took the constructive criticism to coronary heart, and in its personal decidedly very French approach, went and made the very best rattling instrument watch they’ve put out this aspect of the Navy Seals, and that’s saying one thing.
After the entire isolation of 2020, the COVID-19 vaccine rollout in spring 2021 gave us causes to go exterior, meet new individuals, and put on attention-grabbing watches in public once more. Though this was an enchanting 12 months for my very own assortment, including my first unique Heuer Calibre 11 and a basic tuning fork-powered Eterna-Sonic Kon-Tiki diver, alongside studying to cease worrying and love G-Shock, repeatedly I discovered myself coming again to the very first watch I bought this 12 months – a ‘90s-era Omega Seamaster Skilled 300. Past conjuring up reminiscences of Pierce Brosnan and scratching off a bucket-list merchandise for this lifelong Bond fan (for these questioning, sure, I used to be in reality named after unique 007 actor Sir Sean Connery), over my time with the watch I’ve come to acknowledge this as what may properly be crucial sports activities watch design to return out of that decade. There’s a mix of basic Omega DNA seamlessly blended in with a playful, virtually architectural strategy to the modern design tendencies of the early ‘90s. It’s slim and refined sufficient to swimsuit practically each event, however stays solidly succesful as a dive watch and catches the attention of each watch nerds and non-enthusiasts alike. Moreover, in a 12 months like this, who couldn’t use a bit enhance of super-spy confidence of their every day life?
I don’t find out about you, however 2021 was very very like 2020 for me. Touring was out of the query and I principally stayed house. For sensible causes, I wore an Apple Watch more often than not. However once I received the prospect to go out, I’d placed on one thing small and basic, and that often means my classic Grand Seiko 6245-9000. I’m one of many few that doesn’t agree with Grand Seiko’s choice to drop the Seiko brand at 12 o’clock. The sense of symmetry is lacking with the newer watches not having the Seiko brand up prime and the Grand Seiko emblem under. Moreover, most classic Grand Seikos had been made this manner, so why change it? At any price, I really like the 6245’s distinctive case form and its outstanding boxed crystal. I’m nonetheless trying to find the right strap to go together with it, so if in case you have options, sound them out under.
Name me a watch hipster in the event you’d like, however I’ll freely admit that the majority my watch funds are spent on watches from smaller, boutique manufacturers. I’m an enormous fan of German manufacturers like Stowa, Damasko, Sinn, and NOMOS, and I really like small-batch manufacturers that take a novel strategy to watchmaking, like anOrdain with its beautiful enamel work. So, what the heck is the Seiko SPB143 (SBDC143) doing atop my checklist? Hey, simply because I write for aBlogtoWatch doesn’t imply I’m immune to observe hype. Few watches of the 2020s have been gushed over greater than this goldilocks-sized Japanese diver, and after months of hemming and hawing, I lastly picked one up at first of 2021. However right here’s the factor — the SPB143 really lives as much as the hype. The classic styling modeled after the long-lasting 62MAS, the refined grey sunburst, the spot-on dimensions… it simply provides as much as a chunk that I seize over and over. It’s the kind of watch that makes you surprise why you’ve got so many watches in your assortment within the first place. Certain, the bracelet is lower than superior, the 6R35 motion is hit-or-miss (fortunately, mine’s working robust), and a ceramic bezel could be good, however none of that issues when a watch appears to be like and feels this good.
In 2021, I made a concerted effort to put on a distinct watch each single day, a extra daunting problem than it appears given the love-hate cycle endemic inside my very own and lots of different watch fanatic minds. That mentioned, I’ve all the time appreciated Marathon Watch Firm out of Canada, particularly the GSAR (Authorities Search and Rescue) assortment of diver’s watches. I initially received into Marathon whereas serving within the U.S. Coast Guard in San Francisco and appreciated the simple legibility, tritium fuel tubes, and extremely stout development introduced by the usual 41mm GSAR. The Marathon merely works completely for its supposed use case of maritime search and rescue. And even when that wasn’t my job anymore, my love for the GSAR lived on. I’ve in all probability owned six or seven of them over time, promoting them as money wants arose. However in 2021, I made a decision to purchase a GSAR to maintain. I additionally elected to have the watch transformed to a left-sided crown structure to handle what I really feel is among the watch’s solely shortcomings: a crown that may be powerful on the again of your hand. On the wonderful OEM bracelet particularly, the now-lefty GSAR has been a relentless companion and a watch I’ve managed to maintain wound and set for weeks at a time with out touching the crown. And given the vast collection of nice dive watches I’ve collected over time which are additionally vying for my consideration, that’s actually saying one thing.