Will dress watches remain trendy?

Philipp Mayrhofer, last updated on 01/24/2023

A world without dress watches is unimaginable for watch lovers. Because tool and sports watches seem so omnipresent, they are often somewhat lost in the public eye. Nevertheless, real watch fans have one or the other dress watch in their collection. There are good reasons for the recent renaissance of dress watches. We explain the trend in our article.

What are dress watches?

Before we go into detail, we would like to briefly explain at this point what actually distinguishes this type of watch. Dress watches are comparatively discreetly designed watches that are usually worn with elegant outfits and on official occasions. For this reason, they are also called suit watches in German. It is essential for dress watches to express a purposeful understatement. There are neither opulent designs nor complicated gimmicks here. The focus of these watches is actually on the pure time display; i.e. three hands, with a second hand often located off-center on a sub-dial. Two-hand watches, or so-called tuxedo watches, also fall into this category. If there is a date display on the dial, it is a business watch, which is also used for business occasions.

The color palette also pays tribute to the discreet design approach, with restrained dials and a traditional color choice of black, white and navy blue. Recently, however, the color palette has been expanded. Brown and green tones are now also found in newer designs. Although there are still no elaborate designs in these, there are certainly lacquered dials or discreet sunburst finishes. The fact that dress watches are particularly flat is due to the fact that they have to slide easily under shirt cuffs. At 34 to 40 millimeters, the diameter of the watches is also narrower than that of tool watches or sports watches. Dress watches also tend to remain traditional when it comes to materials, so precious metals like platinum and gold or the occasional stainless steel are not uncommon. The classic look is also created by the polished surfaces and the straps made of high-quality calfskin or alligator leather. True to their intended purpose, delicate dress watches are designed for occasions where they will not be exposed to weather, shocks or impacts.

Timeless elegance does not need trends

Lovers of dress watches do not have to worry about the popularity of this style of watch falling prey to changing trends. Thanks to Louis Cartier and his Cartier Tank, they have secured their place on the list of essential lovers' watches. With their timeless appearances, they are immune to fads like design gimmicks. This makes them elegant evergreens that look good in any watch collection. However, it makes it seem like dress watches are becoming more popular again lately. This impression probably comes from the fact that the watches are no longer reserved for absolute traditionalists, who only wear the watches on the occasions for which they were originally designed. Younger watch enthusiasts in particular are increasingly wearing dress watches in everyday situations as well, bringing them more into the public consciousness. Other factors for the increasing popularity of the watches is, on the one hand, the fact that gold watches are basically in fashion right now. On the other hand, the boundaries between sports watches and dress watches are relatively fluid, and the popularity of sports watches has also spread to design-related watch styles.

About the author

Philipp Mayrhofer

Hello my name is Philipp. I actually had my first points of contact with luxury watches through YouTube and the many watch reviews that can be seen there. As a result, I was able to acquire extensive watch knowledge.