Patinated Minimalism—Introducing Flint Watches

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Flint is a London-based watch brand that has been riffing on a single minimalist dress watch design since August of 2017. That 38-millimeter watch is shaped like a puck, with no lugs, a relatively flat crown, a white no-date dial with tiny numerals and markers and hair-thin hands. All of that restraint seems to be in service of helping the uniquely crafted bezels catch our eyes.

And the bezels are quite eye-catching. Flint offers them in either marble, raw copper, or copper that’s been oxidized to turn either green or blue. Those green and blue bezels aren’t your typical muted blue-green patina, but instead are rendered in saturated, complex colors that look more like jewel-stones than tarnish. Oxidizing the copper—a process called patination—involves application of various chemicals onto the copper, then seizing that process and locking the result in place with a sealant. All of that metal-craft, plus all assembly and finishing, is done in England (parts are mostly Swiss).Technically, the bezels are bezels in the sense that they are attached to the case in order to hold the crystal, but visually the brushed stainless steel case and the bezel seem like equal partners in a sandwich design. This is especially true when looking at the watch in profile, where this sandwich effect is most obvious.

Turquoise Patina.
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The straps mount invisibly under the case, and they are made of premium goat leather in colors ranging from natural beige to near orange to a deep emerald green. Goat is a supple leather that looks (and is) rugged. Its knurled grain compliments the highly figured bezels for a multi-textured appearance, and this aligns with Flint’s statement that the company “was born out of a passion for texture, materials and functional design.”

Patina collection: Green, Blue, and Turquoise.
Aravalli Marble and Raw Copper.

As with a number of dressy, minimalist watches today, Flint intends their watches to be suited for both men and women. Of all the watches I’ve seen that claim to be unisex, I think the Flint might actually be one of the most successfully non-gendered watch of them all—especially when you consider that there is just one size available. As for why this watch is seemingly so gender neutral, I’d point to the lack of lugs, the obscurity of the bezel materials, and the supple-yet-rugged goat skin straps, all of which are novel enough that they don’t carry a strongly gendered message like so many other materials and shapes do.Inside is a quartz Ronda movement and the mineral glass crystal offers typical dress watch water resistance of just 30 meters. Priced at £180.00 (~$200 US), Flint watches are available through Flint’s online store. Flint

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At age 7 Allen fell in love with a Timex boy's dive watch his parents gave him, and he's taken comfort in wearing a watch ever since. Allen is especially curious about digital technology having inspired a revival of analog technology, long-lasting handmade goods, and classic fashion. He lives in a one-room schoolhouse in The Hudson Valley with his partner and two orange cats.
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