July 4

Worn on the 4th of July: Five Festive Watches to Help You Celebrate the Colors of America

Headed to a cookout? Love you some stars and stripes? Then show off your national pride this 4th by sporting one of the following five flag-colored watches.

By Barbara Palumbo
Journalist

Believe it or not, here in the States, there are more things that unite us than divide us. Think about it: as a whole, we love us some freshly-baked apple pie, post-season baseball, politically-charged Facebook arguments, and pretty much anything that’s red, white, and blue. We flaunt our national colors on everything from our Old Navy American flag tees (despite the fact they’re made in Vietnam and Guatemala), to our Budweiser-holding beer koozies, so this Independence Day, why not also wear the hues of Old Glorywith one of these five colorfully collectable watches? I mean, we’re not at war with the Swiss (yet), so for now, let’s appreciate the greatest gift their country has ever given ours. (And yes... watches are better than cheese.) 

 

Start Spreading the News with Hublot and the Giants

When most non-Americans think about The Land of the Free, they immediately think of the great city of New York, and why wouldn’t they? From the late 1800s to the mid-1900s, New York (or, Ellis Island, particularly) served as the gateway to over twelve million immigrants looking for a better life. On top of that, it remains the most populous city in our nation with over eight-and-a-half million residents as of the 2016 census. And, New York happens to be home to some of the most decorated sports teams ever to have played in their respective fields. 

The Hublot Classic Fusion New York Giants Special Edition is a limited-edition timepiece created in collaboration with New York’s four-time Super Bowl champions... the Giants. The watch’s blue lacquered dial and matching blue calf leather and rubber strap are accented with shades of white in the way of rhodium-plated appliques and fine stitching. But while blue is the dominant color of the piece, a strip of red lacquer pops from its face at the outward edge of the seconds hand. 

 

The watch contains the Hublot HUB1143 caliber movement surrounded by a satin-finished and polished titanium case, sapphire crystal, and satin-finished titanium case back engraved with "SPECIAL EDITION" and "XX/22". 

 

The Hublot Classic Fusion New York Giants Special Edition

The British are Coming, and Their Names are Nick and Giles

Despite the folklore you may have heard growing up, Paul Revere – a successful silversmith and engraver from Boston – did not actually utter the above statement during the Revolutionary War (which of course, led to the birth of our nation). On the contrary, Revere’s ride was dependent upon secrecy. To put it more plainly, word of the arrival of the British forces is sort of like one of those “new release” embargos of today. In other words, everybody’s talking about it privately behind the scenes but screaming it from the mountaintops is an absolute no-no... well... for most of us.  

 

Today’s British, however, are much more welcomed in America, so much so they even hold cross-country vintage car tours in celebration. Naturally, I’m referring to the English brothers of the brand Bremont, and despite the fact they should be bitter about losing the war, these guys are as giddy about the USA as six-year-old ice-cream-eater watching fireworks in his jammies.  

 

This month, Bremont released the red, white, and blue “Bremont Waterman”; a highly technical dive watch limited to 300 pieces and water resistant to 500 meters. The watch contains the modified caliber 11 ¼’’’ BE-93-2AE automatic chronometer, has a 42-hour power reserve, satin and polished 43mm stainless steel case with uni-directional rotating bezel, patented anti-shock movement mount, and automatic helium escape valve and crown protector. 

 

The red, white, and blue “Bremont Waterman"

You’re a Grand Old Flag, which is Why You Should Be Magnified in a Bubble

Written by George M. Cohan for a stage musical in 1906 (1906??? Can you believe things like “writing” and “stages” even existed back then??), the song “You’re a Grand Old Flag” incorporated snippets of other popular patriotic songs of the era and was originally named “You’re a Grand Old Rag” before Cohan caved under pressure and changed the tune’s title. 

Corum’s homage to that “Grand Old Flag” comes magnified under a highly domed sapphire crystal and is appropriately dubbed the “Corum Stars & Stripes Bubble” watch. Available in 52mm and 47mm diameters, the “Stars & Stripes” watch is powered by an automatic caliber Eterna movement (3902A for the 47mm) encased in stainless steel. The watch is water resistant to 100 meters, is accompanied by a blue rubber strap, and at its release in 2017, was limited to 88 pieces. 

 

Corum Stars & Stripes Bubble

Bringing Americans and Brits together via Shelby and Baume et Mercier

The Cobra sports car has a long and storied history (which I will shorten to two sentences for the sake of this article) that involves Britain’s AC Cars Ltd. automotive manufacturer as well as American automotive designer Carroll Shelby. As the story goes, Shelby wrote to AC asking if the company would build him a car that could accept a V8 engine. AC agreed, and Shelby found his engines with the Ford motor company, thus giving birth to the Anglo-American sports car known today as the Shelby Cobra. 

 

Clifton Club Shelby Cobra 1964

Back in 2015, Swiss watch brand Baume et Mercier announced a partnership with Carroll Shelby Licensing Inc. that would result in the production of Capeland Shelby Cobra limited edition watches. Today, the Shelby/Baume et Mercier collaboration is still intact, and in 2018, Baume et Mercier released the Clifton Club Shelby Cobra 1964.

The 44mm diameter red, “white”, and blue counters limited-edition timepiece is powered with a self-winding movement (Valjoux 7750) with a chronograph and tachymeter function housed in a polished, satin-finished steel  case. The watch is limited to 1964 numbered pieces at its release in tribute to the year of the introduction of the iconic Daytona CSX2299 car that reached 196mph speed record. 

 

Clifton Club Shelby Cobra 1964

Honor, Courage, Commitment: Ulysse Nardin’s Nod to the Navy

While Independence Day is technically the day we celebrate the official birth of our nation, it’s also a good day to recognize those who serve in our armed forces here at home, stationed abroad, and also out at sea. 

Swiss watch brand Ulysse Nardin – known for their nautical connection and precision – will be releasing a unique version of its Executive Tourbillon which will launch exclusively in the United States on July 4thin honor of Independence Day and the brand’s connection to the U.S. Navy. The 50-piece limited edition “Stars and Stripes” skeleton was created as an homage to the American flag and incorporates white and red stripes as well as white stars on a deep blue background as part of its design.

 

Ulysse Nardin "Stars & Stripes"

The 45mm watch has a 170-hour power reserve and contains the Caliber UN-171 Manufacture manual-winding movement. “Stars and Stripes” is water resistant to 30 meters and has a blue carbon-like leather strap attached to its titanium case which is accented with a blue ceramic bezel and blue crown.

 

Ulysse Nardin "Stars & Stripes"

The Watches And Clocks That Powered A Nation: A Look At The State Of Watchmaking In 1776

By Hyla BauerContributor & Special Projects
Before American watchmakers hit their stride, pocket watch and clock imports from Europe kept Washington’s contemporaries on time.