The holiday season is full of invitations and reservations. Dinner parties, formal affairs, and opportunities for your best black-tie attire are as abundant as holiday carols. Choosing your accessories for a holiday season event can be daunting. Formal enough to be serious, classic enough to stylish, and modern enough to be relevant, these events are not for your favorite sport team cufflinks.
While we can’t deliver the perfect tuxedo fit, we can give you everything you need to choose a dress watch that will stand out at your holiday cocktail party, formal dinner, or as that much desired present under the tree.
A dress watch has a different purpose than other . Accessory and complication are unnecessary as the only function of a true dress watch is to tell time in a stylish fashion. Elegant and straightforward, dress watches forego the lavish embellishments and over-the-top adornments found on other timepieces.
Dress watches are simplistic, elegant, and minimal. Intended to be paired with your business suit, best dinner jacket, or the ever-fashionable tuxedo, a dress watch is your steadfast companion to all formal holiday functions.
Here are a few of our favorite dress watches for the holidays:
If the Flagship looks as though it is a relic of the 1950s, that’s because in many ways, it is. One of Longines most ever-present creations of the mid-century, found in every catalog and shop window, has been recreated as an accurate re-issue. The 38 mm stainless steel case is a hallmark of the era, and the Flagship is completed by old-school logos and gold indices.
Powered by a self-winding mechanical movement, the Flagship provides a 42-hour power reserve. With simple design and old-school logos, the Flagship has simple gold hour and minute hands with a small second’s sub-dial and a date window at the 6 o’clock position. Simple, elegant, and statement-making, the Longines Flagship is the perfect compliment to a formal suit event.
Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 (Ref: 1100S/000R-B430)
The Vacheron Constantin American 1921 was introduced in October 2017 as a smaller version of the 2008 American 1921. The 2008 iteration featured a 40mm cushion-shaped case which caused the watch to wear similar to a 42mm diameter timepiece. The updated American 1921 has a decreased case size of 36.5 mm, which wears closer to a 38mm watch. The design is nearly identical, featuring a pink-gold cushion-shaped case with silver dial and signature 45-degree rotation of the face. The twelve o’clock hour is where a normal two o’clock would be located. Drawing from the design of 1920s pocket watches, the Historiques American 1921 places the crown over the 12 o’clock offset position, making it easier to read the time while driving.
The original model was limited to twelve pieces with the face offset 45 degrees counter-clockwise and was followed with 12 pieces the following year offset 45 degrees clockwise. The numbers marking the hours are reminiscent of pocket watch styling, as are the stylized hour and minute hands. Powered by the calibre 4400 and featuring a 65-hour power reserve, the American 1921 is elegant with a little risk, the perfect combination for a holiday event.
Jaeger LeCoultre Reverso
Originally conceived in 1931 to provide British Army officers in India a timepiece that would be protected from the mallet strokes of their polo matches, the Reverso is a one-of-a-kind design. The face of the watch turns over to reveal a solid back piece which protects from damage due to impact.
The style of the Reverso has remained largely unchanged since it’s original release. The Stainless-Steel rectangular case measures 40mm by 24mm and is powered by the 822A/2 calibre. A 42-hour power reserve operates the simple two-hand display marking hours and minutes.
The black alligator leather strap is closed by a thin buckle, further conveying the rugged elegance of this timepiece. Featuring iconic art deco numerals and a rail track minute circle at the center of the face, the Jaeger LeCoultre Reverso is still one of the brands most timeless pieces.
Drawing on classic pocket watch styling, the Portofino was introduced in 1984. The uncluttered dial features Roman numeral hour markers accompanied by feuille hands. Offered in multiple complications, the refined Portofino Automatic delivers a 40mm stainless steel case housing the Calibre 35111 automatic movement. With a power reserve of 42 hours and a small date window at the three o’clock position, the face remains clear of any clutter or distraction.
The silver painted dial highlights a central hacking seconds hand. The reverse of the timepiece is available for engraving to commemorate a specific event or season when the classic styling of the IWC Portofino provided timekeeping excellence.
Whether you are attending a small gathering or an enormous formal gala, these four dress watches combine modern technology with historical details and clean elegance to provide the perfect compliment to your holiday party wardrobe. They are such fine examples of a dress watch that you might just be tempted to wear them year-round.