The classical dress watch is an archetypal part of horology, and it's something that you just have to have in your collection. The common misconception is that a dress watch is normally super expensive, like the ones we featured a few weeks back. Don't be mistaken, these are by no means tacky cheap dress watches. But they're exponentially more affordable, more accessible and almost as beautifully made. So, if you're looking for a dress watch that looks great and won't break the bank, look no further, because we've put together a list of the 10 best affordable dress watches we could find.
Frederique Constant Classic Moonphase
The Frederique Constant Classic Moonphase is a beautiful example of combining a lunar complication in a classical dress watch. The addition of the moonphase adds another dimension to what is already a very timeless look.
Maurice Lacroix Pontos Day Date
The Maurice Lacroix Pontos Day Date is a very striking, very avant-garde take on the classical dress watch. Distinct shades of grey, bold lines, razor sharp edges and a dial that looks 3D makes the Pontos Day Date one of the best affordable dress watches that we could find.
Hamilton Intra-Matic Chrono
Hamilton's Intra-Matic Chrono is a lovely take on vintage design coupled with the traditional look of a typical dress watch. The panda dial gives the watch a more casual look, but in terms of duality between a daily wearer and something you can dress up, the Intra-Matic Chrono is a great dress watch.
Hamilton American Classic Spirit of Liberty
The Hamilton American Classic Spirit of Liberty's case is a thing of beauty in itself. The multi-faceted lugs look incredible, the case is wonderfully designed and the grey sunburst dial is beautiful. This is a dress watch that would fit any era of watchmaking easily.
Glycine Combat 6 Classic Moonphase
Another moonphase dress watch, this time from Glycine in the form of the Combat 6 Classic Moonphase. The Combat 6 Classic Moonphase has a distinct utilitarian look to it that I find can be dressed up or down relatively easily. Another fairly casual take on the typical look of the dress watch, the Combat 6 Classic Moonphase is a very affordable entry point.
Tissot T-Classic Ballade
Tissot has a penchant for making affordable dress watches, and the T-Classic Ballade is another example of that fact. Featuring a beautiful guilloche dial, a machined bezel and a COSC movement, the T-Classic Ballade is an absolute bargain.
Orient Star Classic
You don't need to spend thousands of dollars and you don't even need to buy from a Swiss brand to get your hands on a decent dress watch. The Orient Star Classic combines a timeless aesthetic with an affordable price tag and a mechanical movement to create an offering that is super hard to beat.
Hamilton American Classic
A simple, time only watch with a discreet date window and a beautiful silver sunburst dial makes for a wonderful dress watch. Easily dressed up or down, the Hamilton American Classic is a great option for those who want an affordable dress watch that can be worn at work, at play and anywhere in between.
Seagull Classic Thin
For those who aren't familiar with Seagull, it is a Chinese-based watch manufacturing that made the wonderful 1963 Chronograph which was met with a lot of excitement. Side note: It's also the world's largest mechanical movement manufacturer. The Classic Thin is a nice, very restrained and very mature approach to the classical dress watch. And, given its very affordable price tag, I felt it more than fit the bill to be featured on this list.
Bulova Regatta Classic
The final piece on this list comes from Bulova with the Regatta Classic. This piece features some openworking, some obscure dial patterns and a lug articulation system not that dissimilar to the IWC Da Vinci collection. The Regatta Classic is a bit odd, so fair game to you if you do end up buying it.
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