Is the trend of small-sized wristwatches making a comeback?

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Is the trend of small-sized wristwatches making a comeback?

[Watch Recommendation] Recently, I have been browsing through the new products released by major watch brands in the past two years and I have noticed a quiet “comeback” of small-sized watches. Brands have keenly observed the increasing demand for watches with smaller diameters, whether they are dress watches or sports watches, and have started introducing styles with smaller case sizes. However, there is no strict definition for the size of these so-called “small-sized” watches. In this article, I have selected three watches that I consider to be “small-sized” in my opinion.

Vacheron Constantin Traditionnelle Series 82172/000R-H008

Product Model: 82172/000R-H008
Domestic Price: ¥190,000
Watch Diameter: 38mm
Case Thickness: 7.77mm
Movement Type: Manual Mechanical
Movement Model: 4400 AS
Case Material: 18K Rose Gold
Water Resistance: 30 meters
Watch Details:
Watch Review: At the 2023 “Watches and Wonders” Shanghai Fine Watch Exhibition, Vacheron Constantin introduced two new Traditionnelle series watches, and this is one of them. The 38mm watch diameter perfectly matches the elegant temperament of the watch. The biggest change in the new model is the use of a new dial color combination, with a dark green dial paired with a rose gold case, creating an elegant yet contrasting effect. The watch retains the classic design elements of the Traditionnelle series, such as the stepped case, railway-track minute scale, and dauphine hands. The watch features a small three-hand layout, with a small seconds hand at the 6 o’clock position. Through the transparent case back, you can see the 4400AS manual winding movement, independently developed by Vacheron Constantin, providing a power reserve of 65 hours. The watch is water-resistant to 30 meters, so it is advisable to keep the watch away from deep water areas during daily wear. It is worth mentioning that this new model will be exclusively launched in China, which is great news for Chinese watch enthusiasts!

Blancpain Air Command Series AC03-12B40-63B

Product Model: AC03-12B40-63B
Domestic Price: ¥140,000
Watch Diameter: 36.2mm
Case Thickness: 11.5mm
Movement Type: Automatic Winding
Movement Model: F188B
Case Material: Titanium
Water Resistance: 30 meters
Watch Details:
Watch Review: This Blancpain Air Command watch has left a deep impression on me since its launch in 2022, after all, the Air Command was once a “hard-to-find” watch, and this version is relatively “easier to buy”. The 36mm titanium case allows “small-wristed” Blancpain enthusiasts to have more options, and the lightweight titanium material is responsible for a “carefree wear”. The blue dial is paired with a blue bi-directional rotating titanium alloy bezel. The 3 o’clock position features a 30-minute chronograph sub-dial, and the 9 o’clock position features a 12-hour chronograph sub-dial, with no seconds hand and the central seconds hand serving as a chronograph hand. In addition, the Air Command features a flyback chronograph function, which allows for continuous timing and eliminates the need for unnecessary repeated operations. The Arabic numeral hour markers, hour and minute hands, the tip of the chronograph hand, and the scale on the bezel are all coated with luminescent material, making it easy to read the time even in dim environments. The watch is equipped with the F188B automatic winding movement, providing a power reserve of 40 hours. By the way, if your budget is higher, there is also a red gold version of the Air Command to choose from.

Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda PF Series PFC804-1020001-100182

Product Model: PFC804-1020001-100182
Domestic Price: ¥167,000
Watch Diameter: 36mm
Case Thickness: 8.6mm
Movement Type: Automatic Mechanical
Movement Model: PF770
Case Material: Polished and Satin-finished Stainless Steel
Water Resistance: 100 meters
Watch Details:
Watch Review: In September 2022, Parmigiani Fleurier released three new Tonda PF series watches, with the biggest change being the slightly smaller case diameter – the watch features a 36mm stainless steel (or rose gold) case. What I like most about this watch is its minimalist and spacious dial design. The silver sandblasted dial adopts a double-hand layout without a seconds hand, and the hands and hour markers are all made of 18K gold with a rhodium finish. The brand logo is located at the 12 o’clock position, and there are no other elements on the dial, bringing the watch back to the essence of “timekeeping”. The “barleycorn” guilloché pattern on the dial is the essence of the Tonda PF series, making the watch look simple yet not monotonous. The watch is equipped with the PF770 automatic winding movement, independently developed by Parmigiani Fleurier, specifically designed for the 36mm model, featuring a micro-rotor and a power reserve of 60 hours. The watch is water-resistant to 100 meters.

Summary: The three watches introduced today have case diameters ranging from 36mm to 38mm, but this does not constitute the “standard” for small-sized watches. As mentioned at the beginning of the article, there is no strict definition for the size of small-sized watches. For example, compared to watches with diameters above 45mm, you can also consider a 40mm diameter watch as a “comeback” of small-sized watches. Out of these three watches, which one do you like the most? Or do you have any other recommendations? Please feel free to let us know in the comments! (Image/Text by Zhang Dalu)

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