Watching the world go by: Cutting the TAG off

“I know most people use their phones to tell time, but there's something very romantic and beautiful about a timepiece.” - Padma Lakshmi

As a self-confessed technophobe, I’m just going to come out and say it…the time feels ripe for a timepiece takeover.

As we lament the reality of mobile phones becoming our constant companions, perhaps it’s time for some well intentioned regression, time travel to a bygone era, please pardon the loosely-hanging fruit of a pun that I just grabbed for.

As a fastidious timekeeper and fan of contemporary Scandinavian-inspired design, the intersect between function and beauty, manifest in the sometimes humble, sometimes opulent wristwatch, has me weak at the knees.

Exploring classic and modern timepieces from some of the most cutting edge and under the radar watch brands, from the Nordic region to the British seaside, here’s six watches of wonder, on hand to elevate your wristwatch game and help you launch your strictly no-phone cultural movement.

 

ORMOUS

As a daily reminder for people to look up and see the bigger picture, the beautifully crafted ORMOUS wristwatch is just what the doctor/horologist ordered.

Inspired by the infinite opportunities of the universe and crafted from a blend of melted meteorite and stainless steel, Creative Director, Maria Lafer is passionate about helping people gain perspective and minimize the daily distractions of life.

These watches have been around the block, travelling through time and space long before landing on planet earth, your smartphone on the other hand has not, you do the math.

Asteroid 2 5 1 7, better known as ORMA is available at ormous.com

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Estella Bartlett

Watch the minutes pass you by in the most affordable fashion with Estella Bartlett, whose bold creations are a absolute bargain at less than £40, but without compromising on style and design.

Made from vegan-friendly alternative leather and available in a selection of colours, Creative Director Louise has drawn her inspiration from trips to Paris and Tokyo, antique markets, and the urban jungle surrounding her Primrose Hill apartment to create a collection of vibrant timepieces.

£39 at estellabartlett.com

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Shore Projects

Is there anything better than the British Seaside? A hypothetical question, please do not message me with package deals to the Med.

Shore Projects Watches, inspired by the rugged beauty of our coastline have bestowed each of their watches with the names of some of Britain’s most iconic seaside resorts, from Newquay to Abersoch and in colour palettes reminiscent of classic British fishing boats.

The vintage-inspired designs allow you to go all out swap shop with these pieces of arm candy thanks to the interchangeable straps, so your investment will last longer than a raspberry ripple on a hot summers day.

The Holkham in Rose Gold is quite the catch.

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TRIWA

Now, I’m always partial to a back-story, and the tale of how TRIWA came to be had me fist-pumping the air.

Founded in 2007 their goal was to change the ingrained narrative around the watch industry that was at the time still focused around status and tradition.

TRIWA (Transforming the Industry of Watches) is all about the embodiment of style through classic silhouettes and Scandinavian simplicity, and the team of four friends only produce products they want to wear themselves, AMEN to that.

Checkout their Falken range at triwa.com

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AÃRK Collective

I have a lot of time (that’s the last pun, I promise) for Melbourne-based creatives AÃRK Collective and their utterly sublime tortoiseshell designs.

Inspired by the challenge of balancing function and beauty, no easy feat I assure you, their creations are unashamedly minimalist and beautifully bold, driven by the trusty mechanics of their Japanese Quartz movement.

$179 at aarkcollective.com

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Mermaid Stories

Ideal for the person who isn’t entirely sure they even need or want a watch, I mean have you heard of the smartphone?!

In the same breath, not only is the minimal design alluring, but the message behind accessories brand Mermaid Stories, a female-founded business is enough to tempt even the most evangelical of tech loyalists.

In a nod to Copenhagen’s mystique and minimalism, each watch is named after the Danish woman that inspired its creation.

Reflecting the dreamy and poetic aspect of time, Josefine is anything but vanilla that’s for sure.

Josephine €259 ~ mermaid-stories.com

ThingsJenna Campbell