The Chicago Microbrand Drops Another Watch
In Our Microbrand Guide, we highlighted Oak & Oscar as one of our favorite stateside microbrands. But, we warned that its limited production watches are tough to get your hands on, as they sell out quickly and their owners tend to not put them on sale.
Well, lucky for us, Oak & Oscar launched a new watch just in time for the holidays. The Humboldt, named after 18th century explorer Alexander von Humboldt (who also has a park/ neighborhood named after him in Chicago, though he never visited the city), is billed as a watch “built to discover.” It lives up to the billing, too. The 40mm watch has a 12-hour rotating bezel that can serve as a timekeeper or help keep track of a second time zone and is water resistance up to 20ATM (656 feet).
It’s powered by a ETA 2892A2 Swiss movement, and is assembled and tested in Switzerland, with final assembly in the States. The sandwich dial is also a joy to look at, reminiscent of earlier Oak & Oscar releases. The case also has drilled lugs, a relief for those who frequently swap straps (and let’s be honest, if you’re buying a microbrand like Oak & Oscar, you’re probably in pretty deep and are changing straps at least weekly).
Additionally, the watch is offered with an original Oak & Oscar bracelet, which they say they’ve been developing for 18 months. They’ve previously teased the bracelet, and even offer it for sale on their site. It’s a unique strategy for an ecommerce-driven microbrand, since most focus on the case design and movement sourcing, often leaving the bracelet or strap as an afterthought.
The Humboldt is up for order on Oak & Oscar’s website, with expected deliver in “late spring 2019”. It’s priced at $1,650 on the bracelet and $1,450 on a leather strap.