Maybe it's the hint of springtime in the air, but I have noticed a lovely crop of new microbrand watches popping up for pre-order, so grab your credit card and have a look.
Zelos Watches has introduced a trio of dress watches on Kickstarter, all of which share the same 40mm case, sapphire crystal, and Swiss ETA 2824 or Selitta SW200 automatic movements. The daring Zelos Avant shows off an intricately perforated and semi-skeletonized dial in a steel, bronze, or PVD black case. It starts at $369.
The Visionary has skeleton hands, applied bar markers, and a dazzling muti-layered meteorite dial in a stainless steel or marine bronze case starting at $459.
Finally, the restrained Gallant keeps it simple with black or white dials with steel or bronze cases and markers for a starting price of just $299.
Halios Watches has come roaring back with three highly anticipated dive watches. The 43mm, barrel-shaped Laguna Series II and the iconic, 48mm Puck Series II marks the return of two of their most popular models. Both feature a Miyota 9015, AR-coated sapphire crystal, stainless steel bracelet, and C3 SuperLuminova.
The Laguna is offered with a gray or black sunray dial and is rated for 300m water resistance. The Puck comes in black or blue and will handle 500m. Both cost $675 and will begin shipping in just a few weeks.
The Seaforth is an all new model. It packs a Miyota 90S5 automatic in a tidy 40mm case rated for 300m. A vintage style domed sapphire crystal with AR coating and an uncluttered dial lend it more of a retro style than the other models. Options include a choice of steel or ceramic rotating bezels, or a clean fixed bezel. There are four colors from which to choose, including a classic black/gilt and a lovely pastel blue. Like the others, it sells for $675.
Marloe Watch Company returns to Kickstarter with the gorgeous Lomond Chronoscope. This beauty holds a SeaGull ST19 mechanical chronograph in its tasteful, vintage inspired case. Measuring 43mm across, the Lomond features a ceramic bezel, high domed acrylic crystal, and a distinctive pinched and fluted crown.
The Classic model comes in white or gray dials and a matte telemeter bezel, while The Vintage comes in Vanilla or Coffee and a polished 60-second bezel. All are attractive, but that rich brown and gold of the Vintage Coffee caught my eye. Prices start at just $372.
Meanwhile in Portugal, Borealis has gone crazy with new watches, releasing three models for pre-order. The Sea Storm is a 300M diver in the style of the 1950's Blancpain Fifty Fathoms and Tornek-Rayville. It measures 41.5mm and runs a Seiko NH35 automatic. The domed sapphire crystal and bezel complete the vintage look. Most variants are already sold out, but you can still grab one with BWG9 lume for $300.
The 42mm Cascais is powered by a Swiss STP1-11 automatic. This 300m diver has a classic layout and promises outstanding lume on both the dial and ceramic bezel. It has a double-domed sapphire crystal, Viton and Tefzel gaskets, and a bracelet with quick adjusting clasp. It is available in black, blue, white, or brown and sells for $450.
The Porto Santo takes a completely different direction. It has shades of Radiomir in its 44mm cushion case and wire lugs, but with harder edges, a pronounced bezel, and a mix of surface finishes. A wild, asymmetric subdial and fan-tailed hour hand really set it apart. Of course, it is also dive ready. The watch is rated for 300m and features sapphire glass, an engraved rehaut, and SuperLuminova. The pre-order price is $299. ⬩
Photos courtesy of the brands.