The dress watch is one of the oldest and most classic watches. The shape of the watch is derived from Huai’s performance. The simple dial and practical big three needles do not require too many fancy embellishments, and inherit the most classic clock design language. But looking back at the new products launched by major brands in recent years, it is not difficult to find that the proportion of sports watches is increasing. And the dress watch, which was once all the rage, has now been neglected, and some people can’t help but ask, is it because the dress watch has declined?
The rise of sports models and the marginalization of dress watches actually reflect more of the aesthetic changes of the times. In recent years, both clothing and shoes are gradually becoming more sporty and casual. Nowadays, except for formal occasions and specific occupations, we rarely go out in suits and leather shoes. And you know, in the last century, suits and shoes were the daily wear of men. With the changes in clothing trends, dress watches have gradually become marginalized.
So is the formal watch on the decline? I don’t think so, and dress watches still have a place in the major brands’ collections. In the case of Rolex, the popularity of the brand in recent years has far exceeded expectations. Submariner, GMT, Daytona and other sports series have been popular in the market, but the performance of the dress watch Cellini has always been bland, and it has even been called “the most Rolex-like Rolex” by watch friends. But it was the existence of Cellini that changed many of my stereotypes about Rolex.
The reason why it is known as “the most Rolex-like Rolex” is because Cellini has too many unusual designs. First of all, Cellini is currently the only formal watch of Rolex, the only series of Rolex that uses a leather strap, and one of the few styles that does not use an Oyster case. In addition, the Prince Cellini is also the only Rolex watch with a see-through case back.
The name of the Cellini series comes from the Italian Renaissance goldsmith and sculptor Benvenuto Cellini, and the case is mostly made of 18k white gold and rose gold to pay tribute to this legendary figure. The first Cellini watch was born in the 1960s. The modern Cellini Ref.50505 was unveiled at the Baselworld 2014. Compared with the old Ref.4243 and Ref.4244, many changes have been made. The appearance, dial design, and movement technology have all been upgraded. The new Cellini has a diameter of 39 mm, a dog-tooth ring and a conical crown. In terms of movement, the manual winding movement has been upgraded to Cal.3132 automatic winding movement, and some models have been set with diamonds, which can be said to be a sincere upgrade in terms of configuration.
Why did such a sincere series encounter indifference? In addition to the changes in public aesthetics, I think it is more about the limitations of the dress watch itself. First of all, compared to sports models, dress watches are more “delicate” and need to be worn more carefully. At present, the mainstream sports watches have reached the waterproof level of 150 meters to 300 meters, and more professional diving expressions have reached 600 meters or even an astonishing 1000 meters. The formal watch still generally stays at the waterproof level of 30 meters to 100 meters, and the anti-magnetic and shock resistance performance is far less than that of the sports watch. In addition, leather straps are often used in formal watches. As consumables, they must be replaced after a certain period of use. The crocodile skin used in advanced watchmaking is often expensive, which invisibly increases the cost of use for formal watches. . Finally, considering the wearing scene, sports watches are often more “universal” for more wearing occasions, but on the contrary, if sportswear is paired with a formal watch, it will be awkward.
Although the fashion trend has gradually marginalized the dress watch, I believe that it will not decline, but become more and more niche and high-end. Like classical music and classical literature, it has become a social symbol in a specific circle.