A versatile watch should be classic enough to be worn with your best suit yet tough enough to withstand the rigours of daily life. Typically, as a first watch many buyers opt for a versatile option to justify their sizeable investment.
The versatile watch is often one with a black or white dial, classically designed and on bracelet or strap that can easily go from formal to casual with ease. To give you an idea of what to look for, here are five highly versatile watches that are often chosen for their overall wearability.
Rolex Datejust II
Originally launched in 1945, the Datejust was the first watch with a date in an aperture. Its most recognisable feature, the Cyclops magnifying lens enlarges the date for optimised reading. A veritable classic, the Rolex Datejust II is enlarged compared to its original size of 36mm to 41mm in keeping with modern sizing trends.
The Datejust II is available in a variety of dial colours and metal combinations of 904L steel, White Rolesor (18k White Gold fluted bezel and Stainless Steel case and bracelet) and Yellow Rolesor (18k Yellow Gold fluted bezel and Stainless Steel, with Steel and Gold Bracelet). The Datejust II’s combination of brushed and polished surfaces, and its Oyster Bracelet make it a watch that is equally well paired with a white t-shirt and jeans, or with a well tailored suit.
TAG Heuer Carrera 1887 41mm
Named after the Carrera Panamericana, one of the most dangerous races of its time, the TAG Heuer Carrera 1887 41mm Model echoes its predecessor’s classic lines, and dial design, with the tachymeter placed on the chapter ring to create more space on the dial to increase legibility. It’s versatility comes from its historical design cues, and the availability of bracelet or leather.
Underneath it’s classic good looks, the case houses TAG Heuer’s in-house Calibre 1887 that keeps true to watchmaking tradition with the inclusion of a column wheel. The TAG Heuer Carrera 1887 makes a great choice for a first watch, not only because of it’s timeless design, but also for the added value it has with the in-house movement and design detailing.
Omega Seamaster 300 Master Co-Axial 41mm
A name synonymous with the ocean, diving, and James Bond, the Omega Seamaster 300 was first released in 1957 and continues its heritage of innovation today. The current model is styled to look like the original 1957 model, but it has been equipped with a few upgrades to bring it on par with the present.
A ceramic bezel with LiquidMetal renders it incredibly scratch resistant, and the model on bracelet is equipped with a rack and pusher clasp which extends the bracelet for increased comfort. Its piece de resistance, however is the Omega Master Co-Axial Calibre 8400 that lies within its 300m water resistant case. Using the famed Co-Axial Escapement, invented by George Daniels, the innovation reduces friction within the movement, allowing it to keep time precisely with increased service intervals.
The watch is imminently wearable due to the size of the case whilst the bracelet’s combination of polished and brushed surfaces is an interesting detail that adds a visual element to the watch. It is also available on a fantastic brown leather strap, should you prefer it.
Tissot Powermatic 80
One of the more affordable choices on this list, the Tissot Powermatic 80 punches well above its weight for the price point it is at. Equipped with the Powermatic 80 movement, the watch can have a power reserve of 80 hours – a length of time that is mostly seen in watches many times its price.
That, combined with its classic styling and date function makes the Tissot Powermatic 80 a compelling choice when it comes to your first watch. Available in a variety of metal combinations on leather or bracelet, the watch is simple enough to be worn with anything you please.
The added detailing on the case also brings a touch of sophistication to a watch that is easily accessible. If you so choose, the watch is even available in a COSC certified chronometer version, showing Tissot’s prowess in making affordable and reliable watches.
IWC Portugieser Chronograph
IWC’s most successful model is exactly that for a reason. The clean lines, a pure dial and its most distinctive feature – the Arabic numerals on the dial all make this piece a must-have. Available in a number of classy options, the all time favourite with the aforementioned Arabic numerals in gold alongside a striking blue seconds hand. The gold numbers and blue highlights give an old-world charm to the watch, honours traditional watchmaking practices. The IWC Portuguese Chronograph is sized at 40.9mm, making it one of the most timeless choices for a versatile watch whether it be alongside your smart casual attire or a suit.