Time+Tide X Bamford Watch

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Bamford X Time+Tide watch blog watch

Of all the watch blog co-production watches I’ve seen – from aBlogtoWatch’s Undone to HoDinkee’s G-SHOCK – the Bamford X Time+Tide is the most attractive. The dial’s combination of black and burnt orange, the bicolor bezel, the lumed indices, the 100m water resistance – Time+Tide’s 40mm timepiece is a winner, even at $2,150 + tax. The problem is . . .

Watch blogs shouldn’t be in the business of selling watches, or profiting from affiliate links to watch sellers. They shouldn’t be in bed with the people who make the watches they review, never mind co-parenting horological babies for fun and profit. Otherwise, they end up publishing PR puff like this:

Bamford X Time+Tide watch on its side

These are the first two watches ever released by Time+Tide, and they arrive to mark a year when – more disconnected than ever before from the world, in the most remote capital city on earth, Melbourne – we made a strong connection with the man behind the Bamford brand, and quickly wanted a watch or two to celebrate it. 

Bamford Collaborations

Celebrate away! What happens when it comes time to review other Bamford watches?

The British modder’s website sells collaborations with TAG Heuer, Girard Perregaux, Zenith and Bvlgari. Some are sublime. Some are hideous. You could argue that many are overwrought and overpriced. But Time+Tide can’t. Not anymore.

TAG Heuer x Bamford Aquaracer in space

TTAW has taken Bamford X TAG Heuer to task for their Aquaracer scratch magnet co-production. Time+Tide didn’t. From this watch forward, Time+Tide can’t say a negative word about any Bamford X timepiece, lest they lose their “strong (a.k.a., profitable) connection” with Mr. Bamford.

I certainly don’t blame Mr. Bamford for his closerthanthis relationship with Time+Tide. Why not co-opt the watch press? It’s a logical progression of his company’s evolution. His design service has come a long way, baby! From exclusively this:

Bamford customized watches

Bamford Watch Department was born of a desire to re-discover the lost art of personalisation in an age of mass production, and has been leading the way in customised luxury timepieces ever since.

As the first company to offer full personalisation of the world’s most iconic watches, we offer a bespoke customisation service that harks back to the boutique craftsmen of the past.

To this:

Bamford Girard Perregaux

Bamford Watch Department has become a sensation in the luxury world, with an extensive array of exciting and exclusive limited edition designs, high-profile collaborations, a fully client-focused service and stockists all over the globe.

Our design team continually create masterworks of watch artistry, from the quirky to the quintessential, the extravagant to the sophisticated, simultaneously becoming a part of horological history and expanding the range of luxury watches, while maintaining the integrity of such iconic and treasured timepieces.

The $13,600 per watch Girard Perregaux Laureato Ghost collaboration is a limited edition series of 45 watches. If all of the Miami Vice-style Ghosts find a buyer – and they should given the obsequious “free” publicity afforded the watch by the mainstream watch media – Mr. Bamford and GP will end up splitting $612k. Here’s Time+Tide‘s “review”:

Girard-Perregaux-Laureato-Ghost-38mm-Bamford-White-Ceramic-2

The charming balance of the flowing case with the octagon within a circle still sounds unnatural yet still blends into perfect cohesion. Favourite detail? The whimsical stripy counterweight of the seconds hand.

So yes, this is Haute Horlogerie of the best remixed kind: every intrinsic detail that makes the Laureato such a great watch is present, down to the last sharp black index, while sexed up by the Bamford Watch Department in inimitable style. 

And here’s Time+Tide‘s critical bit . . . *crickets chirping* . . . Yeah I know: get off this soapbox already! I harp on about the editorial ignominy that is the mainstream watch press to A) strengthen The Truth About Watches brand (by comparing our work to our competition’s) and B) convince naive watch enthusiasts to put down the Kool-Aid.

Time+Tide X Bamford on wrist

Time+Tide is an online horological stroke-book. As a kid who hit puberty at the same time as I found a stack of Playboy magazines in the attic, I fully accept and yes, in many ways, admire T+T’s status in the watch industry. But designing and selling a “special edition” watch with an industry player means fully embracing The Dark Side.

Blancpain X HoDinkee

As beautiful as the Bamford X Tide+Tide timepiece is, I’m disappointed that the Australian watch site joined aBtW and Hodinkee in this perfidious plethora of co-branded horology. I would have much preferred to buy a Time+Tide hoodie.

4 COMMENTS

  1. The charming balance of the flowing case with the octagon within a circle still sounds unnatural yet still blends into perfect cohesion. Favourite detail? The whimsical stripy counterweight of the seconds hand.

    BARF! Really? Does he also write Harlequin romance novels on the side? Or perhaps greeting cards for Hallmark?

  2. Hey… I think I can do this!

    The trembling second hand traced a gentle arc around the moist dial as it passed over the pendulous hour and minute hands.

    Did I get the job?

  3. Counterpoint: This watch is garbage, Bamford Jr. is an overrated trust fund kid, but agreed that watch blogs cannot maintain their independence and have retail/co-branding relationships.

    Orange and blue has been a hot color combination this year. With regard to GMT watches Zodiac did it best:

    https://www.zodiacwatches.com/collections/aerospace/products/zodiac-limited-edition-aerospace-gmt-chronograph-stainless-steel-watch-1

    And Baltic and Timex are currently doing it better.

    https://baltic-watches.com/en/products/aquascaphe-gmt-orange

    https://www.timex.com/on/demandware.store/Sites-timexus-Site/en_US/Product-Variation?pid=Q-Timex-Reissue-38mm-Stainless-Steel-Bracelet-Watch&dwvar_Q-Timex-Reissue-38mm-Stainless-Steel-Bracelet-Watch_color=Stainless-Steel-Blue-Orange

    I would not recommend anyone pay more than $1,000 for a watch with the “caller” ETA 2893-2 clone this watch uses.

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