Today’s new watch round up is a bit snarkier than usual. I blame the watches, starting with a horological horse of a different color: the Hermès Slim d’Hermès Cheval Ikat. Ikat? Wazzat? Wikidpedia rides to the rescue . . .
Slim d’Hermès Cheval Ikat
“Ikat is a dyeing technique formed by binding individual yarns with a tight wrapping applied in the desired pattern . . . Ikat is produced in many traditional textile centres around the world, from India to Central Asia, Southeast Asia and Japan.” So now we know the target market.
The “this isn’t your grandma’s needlepoint” Slim d’Hermès Cheval Ikat measures a modest 39.5mm. It’s yours for a not-so-modest $35k. Hermès hopes to find 72 equine-minded buyers, split between those who fancy a white gold case with a dark dial, and those who prefer a rose gold case with a light dial.
Seiko Presage Enamel Dial Automatic
Before this, the last new watch round up of the year, we posted on the $5100 Presage Prestige Enamel Dial – Seiko’s second-to-least expensive Spring Drive watch. This ain’t that. The $1096 Seiko Presage Enamel Dial Automatic is Seiko’s most inexpensive enamel dial watch.
Aside from saving you $4004, the auto SPEDAs ditch the power reserve indicator mishegos to offer maximum minimalism. They’re “inspired” by Japan’s own Mr. No Nonsense, Riki Watanabe. It’s another thin 39.5mm watch – the sheen has to be seen to believed. (Much like Martin.)
“Life is full of surprises,” Swiss watchmakers Certina observes. “The DS Action Day-Date Powermatic 80 is equipped to tackle each and every one of them.” I’m not sure how the Powermatic 80 helps with unplanned pregnancies, but at least you can leave the $700 watch for 3.33 days, come back, and not have to reset the time.
DS stands for Double Security, referring to the timepiece’s scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, reinforced caseback and seal-protected stem and crown. I make that three security features. Anyway, if your spirit animal’s a turtle, the logo adorning Certina’s sea blue 41mm wristwatch will up your karmic content. Contentment? Something.
Woolbrook promises their $310 Skindiver WT Professional will “Bring Back Neil Armstrong’s Forgotten Mechanical Watch.” To their credit, they acknowledge that there’s a reason it was forgotten. “The fact that Neil’s Skindiver accompanied him in a cockpit is highly probable but which one is impossible to know and leaves a part of mystery.”
I love me some highly probable facts, but this isn’t the bargain basement Moonwatch (or one of its 312 limited editions) you’re looking for. In fact, the French-assembled, Miyota-powered timepiece is a somewhat probable Kickstarter project. That’s the funding mechanism that produces gimmicky timepieces of limited quality (excluding projects that don’t produce anything at all). Just sayin’ . . .
Even if you do, $3k may seem a bit much for a 39mm watch that’s afraid of a light drizzle, powered by a ho-hum ETA 2824 movement. But the money helps fund MIH’s horological restoration work. So there is that.
Favre-Leuba enters our new watch round up as another obscure Swiss watchmaker with a long history that survived the quartz crisis. To keep their coffers filled, F-L have downsized their 46mm Raider Harpoon. Their new $3500 42mm Raider is the “ultimate diving watch with only one hand.”
Someone should tell F-L it’s easy to be the best in a field of one. Meanwhile, I have no idea how to tell the time with this thing – especially after reading ablogtowatch.com‘s explanation. (Something about a rotating inner bezel and the center spinny thing.) ABTW reckons the smaller Harpoon still isn’t “a watch for every taste.” Which is another way of saying it’s fugly. I couldn’t agree more. Except, I just did.
Our new watch round up ends with the Satoshi Wada U – which is not the Japanese equivalent of Bullwinkle J. Moose’s alma mater. It’s the name of a Japanese designer and his latest watch. Mr. Wada created the U for Issey Miyake – whose name sounds like a line cut from The Karate Kid.
The 41mm minimalist U may provide minimal water resistance (5 bar), but at least it’s powered by a $7.50 Hattari quartz movement. An est. $280 buys you a timepiece with a curved surface that resembles a car body, sculpted by the guy who imagineered the Audi A5 coupé. As the Beatles [almost] sang, baby U can drive my watch. Beep beep and beep beep, yeah!