Last month, the watch world seemed to grasp some fresh air and physically hosted this year’s Watches and Wonders. The annual event was badly missed during the multi-year-long pandemic, and it became a hope for many of us. A hope that allays fears and instead brings certain liveliness in us that things progressively adhere to the norm. Now, I’d know most of us do not have the opportunity to be in Geneva to witness all the new watches and hang out with all the watch brands while feeling like a bon vivant mingling with like-minded people there. So why mention it in the first place? That’s because, in a lot of ways, Watches and Wonders conspicuously set the industry agenda for the rest of the year at least.
That leads us to today’s lookbook. If I can draw the relations from the fair and what I’m about to share with you all is that, in the watch world, classics and modern re-issues are nevertheless, be here to stay. Therefore, this lookbook will comprise five timepieces with classic horology silhouettes -specifically in the steel dive watch design – but executed with certain quirks by two watch companies. When you think of those and what we Gnomon often offer, you can probably guess them right. Yes, thats Steinhart and Squale. I’ll be sharing their classic sports watches that I personally love myself. The five pieces below have made some sparks and excitement in me, akin to what I just saw at the watch fair this year. They indeed left deep impressions.
Steinhart Ocean 39 GMT “Melon”
So let me start with the star of the show for this year’s May. Our latest collaboration with Steinhart Ocean 39 GMT “Melon” hits all the sweet spots for what a collector would enjoy. A beautiful sixties take on the bi-color “bakelite” GMT bezel made of modern sapphire material. It is paired beautifully with a stark white dial for a nostalgic look. And what’s intriguing is we went with two different shades of green which are refreshing for us today, just like during the epoch when watch companies made watches with bold contrasting colors. Steinhart and us successfully incorporate the “melon” bezel with a vintage theme dial and a matching GMT hand.
While I enjoyed launching this exclusive Melon GMT, my wearing experience was dissolute. Mainly since it is unlike the usual “Pepsi” and “coke” that we see, but still be able to look like a classic GMT. Its case size of 39mm continues to hit my sweet small wrist as a daily-beater yet brings a colorful palette to my eyes every time I check the times (yes, as it reads two time zones). Besides, did I mention that this model is only limited to around a hundred pieces?
Steinhart Ocean One Green
Well, this one is another green watch… But not quite the same vibe. While many of you might have known this particular dive watch is not the latest novelty, nor is it an excessively limited edition. The green bezel and black dial combination of the Ocean One Green assure you that it’s still in vogue. Look at last month’s watch lineups; we could quickly call out several brands with this “new” green and black combination. Personally, the green tone of the bezel just simply clicks well together. It gives the otherwise sober-looking black-on-black diver a subtle pop of color, but not overdoing so. I’d guess green will still be the new black, as the watch trend has already demonstrated.
Squale 30 Atmos Blue/Red GMT Ceramica – 40mm
Speaking of what’s enduring through watch seasons, a good classic “Pepsi” GMT couldn’t be benched. It is indelible and fits the first five lineups when we speak of GMT sports models. This particular Square 30 Atmos Blue/Red beautifully combines vintage aesthetics and classicism. It got the “jubilee” style bracelet, wearing effortlessly on my wrist at the perfect 40mm case size. What I like about this Squale version is its raised hour plots, creating a certain depth for its wearer at all angles.
Since we’re at this movement and GMT watch, I would like to address one issue. The 30 Atmos Blue/Red GMT Ceramica runs on the SW330 Swiss caliber by Sellita and functions exactly the same as an ETA 2893. So why do I mention this particular movement? I am determined to defend its quick-set GMT hand instead of the hour hand. I realized many so-called purists would drop their complaints on this “caller” style GMT complication as if it is a sin to consist on earth. So what’s wrong while at that? It still gets the job done and allows one to quickly jump the GMT hand to read another time zone, with a quick adjustment for the date (when rotating the crown in the opposite direction at the same position). Why would ETA and Sellita be producing them massively for decades if this is so wrong? Don’t ever let this wrong judgment become a stigma, preventing you from enjoying superb watches like this Squale GMT. Now pardon me as I just let this unjust view of this GMT style, and we can move on.
Steinhart Ocean 39 Black Military Camouflage – Ltd Ed 200pcs
On the other end of the classic spectrum, we see wild, unusual ones. It is not a bad thing, actually. It provides a great balance in the watch industry, allowing us to sometime be less serious and feel mundane. The Steinhart Ocean 39 Black Military Camo LE is one of such. Its moniker doesn’t do justice to the fun and enjoyment it brings for me. That’s because it’s the least of a serious “military” watch – although it is capable of being one – but more of a fun and stylish diver. Think of it as a perfect match to your “A Bathing Ape” outfit of the day. It simply compliments you with a cool-looking black and gold case, with its own “Cloud Camo” dial transcends well with some streetwear vibe. I totally dig this watch. Kudos to Steinhart for launching this fantastic Ocean diver.
Squale 30 Atmos Maio GMT Ceramica
I would say this last piece for the month’s highlight is as good as the one that started. The Squale 30 Atmos Maio looks delicious aesthetically like the “mayo” nnaise on your chicken Nanban. The white dial here differs from the Steinhart’s Melon, as it’s more off-white here and with a glossy finish. This results in a warm retro look unlike any others while reminiscing closely about the tasty spread that most of us love deeply.
The GMT wears larger at 42mm and feels sporty overall. It is further fitted with a blue and black tone bezel made in ceramic materials, resulting in a casual look with a particularly modern touch. I adore the refreshing vintage white dial, bridged by its cool modern-looking two-tone bezel hue and its modern-day watchmaking sports case. I would rock this piece every time I wanted something different, yet it packs all I need in a modern GMT diver.