MICRO MONDAYS: With a design that’s clean and serene, the Wolter Classic lets every detail breatheFergus Nash
For the last few years, watchmaking has really been throwing off the shackles of stylistic repression across independent and large-scale manufacturers, leading to some of the most outlandish designs ever seen. Although an ever-increasing will to experiment can only be a good thing for the industry, the trend towards more eccentric shapes and “fun” colours can leave a dearth of options for those with more reserved tastes. The Wolter Classic fills an interesting spot in that niche, taking a lot of modern elements and presenting them in a tasteful, vintage-inspired package.
In order to meet the worlds of casual and formal in the middle, Wolter have gone with a case design that blends elements of the two. A highly polished bezel slopes away from the crystal towards petite and brushed lugs, which then angle towards clipped points. The presence of crown guards also points towards some sporty influence, and makes the case have an air of a 1960s skin diver without a rotating bezel. The dimensions are set to fill out a wrist nicely without reaching its limits, with a 39.5mm diameter and a lug-to-lug of around 46mm. The total thickness is 11.25mm, although the side profile of the case actually makes the Wolter Classic look even thinner than that.
The most present detail on the dial is the Wolter logo itself, with a typeface that looks like it came straight out of the 1920s or ’30s. When wristwatches were first becoming popular, brand names were often an afterthought unless you already had a history selling pocket watches. The simple printing, wide letter spacing and sans-serif typeface instantly makes you expect antique design, however the Wolter Classic contrasts this with a few more modern elements.
The first of these are the applied Arabic numerals, with a digital-looking style you only really notice once stared at. The 12 is slightly larger than the rest, leaving lots of negative space for the dial elements to breathe. The minute track is quite busy, with markings for fifths as well. The pencil-shaped hour and minute hands retain more of that traditional style, while the seconds hand is definitely unique to Wolter. Possibly the centrepiece of the whole watch, it’s bright red and elegantly tapered, before culminating in a definitive arrowhead at its tip and a gear shape as a counterbalance. This shape is the brand’s logo, which you can also find signed on the crown and on the Sellita movement’s rotor.
The Wolter Classic is available in two dial colours, with the first being a crisp white that plays into the classicism that the watch aims to evoke. The other is a deep navy blue, which contrasts with that red seconds hand in a way that gives it a bit more of a playful sportiness. As the Wolter Classic is billed as an everyday watch, your lifestyle should be the influence behind your choice of colour.
The Sellita SW200 is the saviour of smaller brands, and could safely be described as the best value-for-money Swiss movement that’s currently available. At the same time as allowing the Wolter Classic to display the “Swiss Made” stamp at 6 o’clock, the SW200 is an automatic calibre with 38 hours of power reserve and a 4Hz beat rate for a smooth, luxury sweep. The Wolter Classic does use a display caseback, letting you peer into the back of the watch as the movement ticks and the winding rotor swings.
The Wolter Classic pricing and availability:
The Wolter Classic is a limited edition, with 250 pieces available of the white version and only 100 pieces in blue. You can visit their online store here. Price: $799 USD
|Case Dimensions||39.5mm x 46mm x 11.25mm|
|Case Material||Stainless steel|
|Dial||White or blue|
|Strap||Black or brown leather|
|Power Reserve||38 hours|
|Availability||Limited to 250 pieces in white or 100 pieces in blue|