Introducing Watchonista: Volume 04!

Introducing Watchonista: Volume 04!

Later tonight, we officially launch the fourth issue of our print publication, Watchonista: Volume 04. But before we break out the party hats and dust off the good china, here’s a rundown of all the watch and lifestyle goodness you can expect to find packed into it.

By Steven Rogers

It’s here! Watchonista: Volume 04, the fourth instalment of our highly acclaimed print publication, officially launches tonight and hits stores Saturday, July 22nd (more on that later).

It’s been two years – though it seems like only yesterday – since we were bursting with excitement as we revealed to you Watchonista: Volume 01, which was born out of a desire to harness the best of our watch industry and lifestyle reporting from our talented staff on both sides of the Atlantic and to make a print magazine that fellow watch collectors would actually want to read and re-read.

And with each subsequent issue, we’ve looked at how to improve our print offering. Thus, we’ve made tweaks, refined our identity, and dug increasingly deeper to put the best storytelling and most eye-catching visuals on the page.

Next, when Volume 03 came out, we really felt we’d hit our stride. But then a funny thing happened: Our third issue’s success gave us the confidence to take a few more risks and experiment a little.

As a result, creating Watchonista: Volume 04 has felt less like a tricky fourth album, and more like a determined exploration of exciting new horizons: It’s our Hunky Dory, our Ill Communication, our Kid A

More Unique-to-Print Content

Within Volume 04’s 126 pages, you’ll still find our ongoing commitment to publishing articles and photography created entirely in-house, with 100% of the text and 99% of the images included in the issue having been produced by Watchonista. However, this time, we’ve incorporated more unique-to-print content than ever before, including fresh editorials and striking never-seen-before images.

Of course, playing a starring role among all this dedicated magazine material is Breitling, which is only fitting. After all, our cover story about the Swiss watchmaker’s B01 Premier Chronograph opens Volume 04’s editorial coverage, ensuring our fourth issue kicks off with a dash of sophistication and no little amount of historical gravitas.

We complement that with an interview with Breitling brand historian and all-round watch-collecting guru Fred S. Mandelbaum about his new book: Premier Story. Also on the Breitling front, we take a look at the brand’s current sustainability initiatives and the alluring Chronomat models that have arisen from them.

And further bolstering our magazine-specific content is a previously unpublished article about the King Seiko SPB365 “Kikkoumon” that pays homage to Japan’s first-ever wristwatch, the Laurel. Plus, Volume 04 contains at least three articles we previously published on our website that now feature never-seen-before images!

Artistic Insights

Also exclusive to this print issue is our deep dive into the backstory of long-time Hublot collaborator Maxime Plescia-Büchi, founder of Sang Bleu tattoo studios and magazine and co-founder – along with Emmanuel Rey – of typography disruptors Swiss Typefaces. You won’t find any Times New Roman on these pages!

Plescia-Büchi isn’t the only watch-related artist we’ve decided to shine a light on in Volume 04: We also have two dedicated “Meet the Artist” pages with QR codes that redirect to our digital profile of prolific Instagrammer Andrei Stihi a.k.a. @watchfigureswho was kind enough to take a break from building an online universe using minifigs and timepieces to design and photograph one of his imaginative tableaux specifically for use in Volume 04 – as well as to our website interview with Gabriel Lau, a.k.a. @labeg, who recreates the world’s most sought-after timepieces using paper and cardboard!

Challenging Perceptions

As always, we cover the best watch releases of the past year or so, like Ulysse Nardin’s Freak One, Grand Seiko’s GS9 Club Limited Edition Spring Drive SBGY023, Citizen’s 37mm Promaster Dive, and a trio of retrograde date watches from Vacheron Constantin, to name a few.

However, that doesn’t mean we’ve shied away from challenging a few common perceptions about some of the most talked about – and possibly misunderstood – watches of recent times. Thus, we try to separate fact from fiction when it comes to the world’s thinnest watch, the Richard Mille RM UP-01 Ferrari, argue that Audemars Piguet’s Code Starwheel should help to silence critics of the Code 11.59 collection, and more.

We even take on the messier side of collecting: The frenzy around hype watches and the unpleasant way frustration can warp your point of view.

And perhaps no one has a story quite so epic as our very own Rhonda Riche, who spent five months stalking Swatch boutiques in three countries across two continents in her quest to acquire an Omega x Swatch MoonSwatch after it launched.

Readers of Volume 04 can join Rhonda on her Homer-esque odyssey and vicariously experience the full gamut of emotions she went through. The tale’s finale – involving a Fiat 500 along Copenhagen’s waterfront – is a denouement like no other.

Pictures Worth a Thousand Words

Of course, sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words, especially those lush images of watches snapped by Watchonista photographers Liam O’Donnell and Pierre Vogel.

That’s why, in this issue, we have expanded our signature, bock-of-book “Cut For Time” gallery to feature more of their superlative snaps, including no fewer than 19 mouthwatering timepieces, and an entire spread dedicated to movements.

As a result, more than ever before, our “Cut For Time” gallery is pure eye candy for any watch enthusiast.

The Lounge is Back

The brainchild of our Chairman and Executive Publisher, Marco Gabella, and dedicated to horologically adjacent passions with which watch lovers will identify, The Lounge by Watchonista returns to Watchonista: Volume 04 and features stories of cars, cameras, cigars, carry-ons, and more.

We also engage in a fun thought experiment: What if iconic fashion pieces – by the likes of Prada, Christian Louboutin, and Bottega Veneta – were made into watches? As you’ll see, our armchair speculation – which actually required us to add our first-ever legal disclaimer – results in some rather eye-popping renderings!

Same Look, Feel, and Smell

Familiar to readers will be the look, feel, and even smell of Watchonista: Volume 04, which clocks in at over a pound in weight!

The dark, enigmatic front cover featuring Breitling’s B01 Premier Chronograph is stain-coated for added protection, giving it that luxurious soft touch you’ve come to expect from our print editions. Plus, for the first time, our “Watchonista” logo is not rendered in white and is instead emblazoned in the unmistakable shade of Breitling yellow.

Meanwhile, the chronograph’s hands and tachymeter are treated with a special UV gloss, allowing them to stand out against the matte surroundings. Inside, the paper used is of substantial quality, with each internal page treated with a soft-touch coating, which feels luxurious and inviting for readers.

As a byproduct of these paper choices and printing processes, not only do all our delectable images really pop, but the magazine also has a very appealing scent!

As a result, like our three previous print issues, Watchonista: Volume 04 feels so much more permanent than a magazine you’d typically find on newsstands. It definitely feels like something you’d want to keep on your coffee table for a long time.

How to Find Watchonista: Volume 04

Since our founding in 2009, Watchonista has always done things a little differently: Eschewing e-commerce, we don’t sell or buy watches or watch accessories; instead, we prefer to revel in their glory. In keeping with this mindset, we will never charge enthusiasts for our print magazine. Quite literally, it remains “The Watch Magazine You Can’t Buy.”

So, with Watchonista: Volume 04, we are continuing our unique distribution model: The only way you can get your hands on a copy is by visiting our “Find The Magazine” tab, where you can opt-in to location services and instantly find a brand boutique or partner retailer near to you who stocks the magazine.

As of July 26, Watchonista: Volume 04 will be available to pick up free of charge in over 32 points of distribution across North America.

Let’s Get this Party Started

Speaking of which, one new distribution point for our magazine will be Breitling’s chic New York flagship boutique on Madison Avenue. And that’s where will be officially launching Watchonista: Volume 04, later this evening. The event will include a Q&A session with our Executive Editor Mike Espindle and the author of Premier Story, the erudite and entertaining Fred S. Mandelbaum.

Sadly, due to the limited space, we are duty-bound to inform our guest list is maxed out, so if you arrive tonight without an email from us or Breitling confirming your place on the list, you won’t be able to enter.

But if you didn’t manage to secure a place on the guest list, don’t despair. Watchonista: Volume 04 is where the party’s really at.

So please visit our “Find The Magazine” page to work out where you can pick up your copy. And, once you’ve got it, we'd love to hear your feedback. No need to be shy, email us your thoughts at

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