Followers of less discerning style media may be familiar with regular reports of so-called “trends” in men's watches.
These strike us as daft for at least a couple of reasons.
One: it’s not like all the big Swiss watch bosses secretly put their heads together 18 months ahead of time and say ‘Let's make Spring 2021 all about... big dials. I reckon we can shift a few of those’ (at least, we don’t think they do that).
Two: unlike sneakers or haircuts or trousers it would be an odd sort of customer who chose a new watch based on the idea it was "in fashion". Unless you’re John Mayer, luxury watches tend to be once- or twice- in a lifetime purchases. We’d have thought the last thing you wanted was to spend a couple of grand on something that was going to look dated six months later.
And yet, and yet…
Even we can’t ignore the amount of watches with green dials that have been released in the last few weeks. If ever there was a trend in luxury wristwatches, it's surely this one.
Rolex announced a green Oyster Perpetual Datejust. Rado's new Captain Cook comes in green. So does Jaeger-LeCoultre's latest Reverso. Breitling's Premier Heritage Collection – a brand new, Forties-inspired chronograph line – was launched with a green dialled model. Tag Heuer has gone ga-ga for green, right across its range: a Carrera Green Special Edition, a Monaco in green for the first time and a retooled Aquaracer, also green. Meanwhile Patek Philippe has chosen to retire its hugely sought-after Nautilus later this year, releasing a final version... you get the idea.
Now Longines has announced a green version of its Spirit watch.
Introduced as a range last year, the pilot’s style recalled the wistful romance of aviation’s original pioneers with its straightforward design: large Arabic numerals, steel case and leather strap. At under £2,000 it represented good value for money and came in black, silver and blue dialled options.
And now: green!
The latest Spirit comes in two sizes (40mm and 42mm) has a date window and the option of either a vintage leather strap or a steel bracelet.
Pilot watches can be off-puttingly massive – the idea that real pilots need to be able to adjust them while wearing gloves, read the dial while pulling 10Gs etc etc. Longines recognises that their target market isn’t necessarily Hawk Moth pilots but civilians with a taste for the daring do aesthetic of 1930s. As such this watch works great at a respectably average 40mm.
Also: it’s green!
We think it is worthy of your attention not because it’s part of a (cough) trend in wristwatches but because it’s a classically styled timepiece that will look good, whatever year you’re in.
Trends come and go but style is forever, as someone once said.
(It was Ralph Lauren. His favourite colour's blue.)
From £1,750; longines.com
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