Nearly every watch brand went for green during the recent Watches & Wonders 2021 exhibition.
Three years ago, we saw a surge in green watch dials. However, that was nothing compared to the number of green watches presented during the recent Watches & Wonders, which took place between 7 and 13 April.
Most big players released novelties in varying shades of green, from dark to pastel, as well as in different textures. We’re not sure why green has suddenly become so popular among watch brands this year, though. Some say it could reflect people’s yearning for nature after long periods of indoor time due to the ongoing pandemic. Guesses aside, this green dial trend is indeed a cause for celebration for die-hard lovers of the colour.
Touches of Green
For starters, Piaget spruced up its record-breaking Altiplano Ultimate Concept (currently still the world’s thinnest mechanical watch) in a fresh shade of green, dubbing the novel edition as the “Tribute to La Côte-aux-Fées”.
Taking inspiration from the luxuriant terroir surrounding the maison’s birthplace, La Côte-aux-Fées, this new model features screws, hands, a bridge and parts of its dial in deep emerald. Only one piece has been made so far, but the according to Piaget, this green timepiece can be reproduced upon request.
Next up, Zenith released the new DEFY Spectrum collection, which highlights its signature El Primero chronograph movement with 5 bold colour treatments: green, purple, orange, blue, and black. Each case is set with 288 brilliant-cut diamonds as well as gemstones in corresponding colours. Each version is a limited edition with only 10 pieces in production; the green version, festooned with 44 baguette-cut tsavorites, is impossible to miss.
And now, here are the season’s most talked-about timepieces with full-on green dials, starting from the one in the deepest shade.
IWC updated its Pilot’s Watch Chronograph with a reduced diameter of 41mm this year (the previous 43mm model still exists), but that’s not all. This new version houses the Cal. 69385, an in-house column-wheel chronograph movement with up to 46 hours of power reserve. One can also switch between a leather strap and stainless steel bracelet easily, thanks to IWC’s quick-change system. Besides this lush forest green shade, it also comes in a dark blue dial.
Referencing the original Reverso model from 1931, Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Reverso Tribute share the same charming characteristics – such as the unmistakeable rectangular swivel case, dauphine hands, slim hour markers, and small seconds display at 6 o’clock position. This year, the Reverso celebrates its 90th anniversary. A never-before-made version of the Reverso Tribute Small Seconds was presented with a deep green dial, inspired by the dense pine forest surrounding the JLC manufacture in Le Sentier, Switzerland. It is also a fitting tribute to the coloured dials seen on the Reversos made in the 1930s, which stood out like a breath of fresh air among the (mostly) silver and opaline dials of that era. It is fitted with the manual-winding JLC Calibre 822/2, and comes with calfskin straps in a matching shade of green, made by renowned bootmaker, Casa Fagliano.
Getting a new lease of life this year is the Tank Must de Cartier, arguably one of Cartier’s most successful launches in the 1970s. This year’s Tank Must collection gives off vintage vibes, with large models presented in dials of blue, burgundy, and of course, green. While being a faithful homage to the original Tank Must, these new models are fitted with steel cases (they used to be in gold vermeil). Lacquer is used on the dials, which enhances the richness and depth of the colours.
Undeniably one of the most iconic luxury sports watch lines, Patek Philippe’s Nautilus offers the final edition of its Ref. 5711 series (2021 is the last production year for this line) with a “sunburst olive-green” dial. This is the first time that the Nautilus is paired with a green dial. A thin white gold frame around the date window is a lovely detail which adds just a smidgen of sparkle to the overall understated asethetic. Worn on the wrist, the dial takes on cool or warm tones of green, depending on lighting conditions, so it’s definitely a good idea to try on the watch and admire its beauty in person. Also presented in a gem-set version, with 3.6 carats of trapezoidal-baguette cut diamonds 50on the bezel.
Since its launch in 2018, the Tudor Black bay Fifty-Eight has gained a cult following. This year, the collection welcomes its very first green edition, which also happens to be the first within the family to have a solid yellow gold case. Together with its bright olive-green dial and matching fabric straps (which comes as an addition to dark brown alligator straps), the case makes for an eye-catching timepiece that one can probably spot from afar. The Black Bay Fifty-Eight 18K also houses the new MT5400 self-winding calibre, which is slightly bigger than the MT5402 used in previous Black Bay Fifty-Eight models. It also has an open sapphire crystal caseback, through which the movement can be admired.
Green dials are not new to Rolex (think: the green Submariner, lovingly known as the ‘Hulk’ by watch aficionados). However, this year, it’s the elegantly classic Oyster Perpetual Datejust 36 that gets the green treatment. One of the four new versions which feature patterned dials, the green model has a dial decorated with a palm motif reminiscent of tropical foliage. The pattern is rendered in two contrasting shades of green, adding depth to the dial design.
For 2021, TAG Heuer presents a new generation of its celebrated Aquaracer series. Known as the Aquaracer Professional 300, this new series continues to build upon the original pillars of the iconic dive watch, such as its uni-directional rotating bezel, screw-down crown, highly legible luminous markings, double-folding clasp, sapphire crystal, and a minimum water resistance of 200m. Stepping up from its predecessor, the Aquaracer 300m, this year’s novelties feature a redesigned caseback, hands, bezel, and dial, together with new bracelet-style rubber straps. While the seven core models of the new Aquaracer Professional 300 family come with standard black, blue and silver dials, the one which made it to this list is the Aquaracer Professional 300 Special Edition, to be launched a little later this June. The only model fitted with a matte Grade 2 titanium case and bracelet, this singular model is instantly recognisable by its bright green sunburst dial and green ceramic bezel.
One of the most raved-about green timepieces this season, the Breitling Premier B09 Chronograph 40 comes in a delectable pistachio green, a creamy shade not often seen on timepieces. It hails from Breitling’s novel Premier Heritage collection, which is inspired by the original Premier wristwatches produced by the Swiss watchmaker in the 1940s. Sized at 40mm, this COSC-certified chronometer is fitted with the manually-wound Breitling Manufacture Calibre 09, which is based on their Calibre 01. The refreshing pale green dial adds a contemporary touch to a timepiece that also exudes the elegance of vintage chronographs. Undeniably, this is a watch that leaves a lasting impression.
Images courtesy of respective brands featured, artwork by Curatedition. All rights reserved.