Most fashionable individuals harbor a healthy appreciation for well-implemented design, especially when it comes to iconic wardrobe-essentials. There’s no disputing that, among these renowned peripherals, the watch has made its mark as one of the most important; acting as the final style piece to tie everything together. But, common knowledge dictates that one watch cannot rule them all — or, can it?
Sure, the complexities of choosing the right watch for each and every occasion can often seem daunting; however, there’s almost always a way to cheat the system. In the case of fashionable wristwear, minimalism is the key — offering extensive pairing capabilities, exceptional aesthetics, and even greater gumption for men who are looking to put less thought into their elaborate outfit. If you happen to be one of the aforementioned individuals who’re looking for the perfect timekeeper to wear with anything, look no further than the Bauhaus-inspired peripheral; a minimalist variant which draws inspiration from the art school’s iconic colors, styles, and reverence. Below, we’ll outline the most sought-after Bauhaus-inspired watches available for purchase right now — but first, a word on the influential art school.
Understanding The Bauhaus School's Importance
For those who don’t know, Bauhaus garnered its fame as an exceptional German institution that, while short-lived, would influence the world of design, architecture, and art in unforeseen ways. In 1919, the school was founded to foster the country’s rising talent, but, due to the impending war, and subsequent intervention by the Nazi regime in 1933, the school would be shut down after just 14 years. Despite its decade-long tenure, Bauhaus would carve its name into the history of industrial and architectural design due to its influential focus on minimalism, promoting some of the most progressive ideals of the early-century art movement.
As the industry’s understanding of Bauhaus’ approach began to take hold, the school’s influence became undeniable. The profound revelation of simplicity spread into every aspect of daily life, from apparel and footwear, all the way to product and industrial design. Today, we reference this minimalist movement as a tasteful alternative to the complexities of our multitudinous modern styles, opting instead for the comfortable exclusion of the world’s busy design principles. As one of the first mediums to adopt the school’s simplistic aesthetic, wristwear has helped to reinterpret the way we see the world around us, providing an escape from the chaotic complications that are often associated with modern society.
Ruhla kicks off our list with the minimalist 91234M, which, while relatively affordable, retains many of the attractive principles of higher-end watches. This stainless steel variant is a product of the company’s extensive knowledge within the realm of horology, dating back to its roots as a premier East-German watchmaker before its absorption into the Soviet state during the war. Throughout the era, Ruhla built both watches and aviation clocks for the Union; but, as the period came to an end, so too did the country’s adopted Communist ideologies, leaving the company in a state of disrepair. In 1952, the ownership of Ruhla was returned to the German people, garnering in a new era for the watchmaker. This Bauhaus-inspired design demarcates the manufacturer’s commitment to the creation of reputable wristwear, introducing an attractive silhouette, the addition of a sub-second hand, and a date window for tasteful timekeeping. A dependable Q-Werk Ronda 6004.D (date 3) Swiss movement and vaulted mineral glass round out the nostalgic example.
Sternglas’ Naos watch is a handsome variant that strikes the perfect balance between modern influence, and classic design. Not only does the Naos perfectly encompass the Bauhaus school’s minimalist qualities, but it also retains an indescribable err of complexity, thanks to its sleek 316L stainless steel case, domed sapphire glass, and 38mm sizing. A small date window adorns the watch’s right face, adding a touch of professionalism to what some might deem as a casually-inclined example. Inside, an impeccably manufactured Ronda Caliber 714 movement keeps the device as accurate as possible, while classic attributes, elegant indices, and a handmade leather strap promote timeless use.
The inclusion of Braun might come as a shock, but it’s a relatively well-kept secret that the German company has dabbled in the manufacture of notable wristwear. The BN0211 is, in fact, a supremely handsome example created by none other than Dieter Rams, a prolific designer who’s conceptualized some of the brand’s most influential accessories. Its minimalist stature is complemented by simple numerals, indices, and hands, while an attractive black dial and standout secondhand, outfitted in yellow, provide complementary accents throughout. At 38mm, this cleanly-tailored variant successfully mimics Junghans’ less robust wristwear, ensuring a beautifully-adapted composure that’s sure to set it apart from other offerings.
Kent Wang Bauhaus
Kent Wang’s Bauhaus-inspired watches are as simplistic as they come, forgoing the implementation of modern stylings, complexities, or branding. The result? An attractive silhouette that’s devoid of any distractions, paying homage to the minimalist nature of the art school, and defining itself among its similarly-built counterparts. The watch’s 42mm case houses a bold black dial that’s dressed in white indices and a date window for additional reference. To round out the aesthetically-pleasing example, a Miyota 9015 automatic movement provides dependable, self-winding attributes that will keep you on time for years to come.
Junkers doesn’t shy away from the term “Bauhaus-inspired,” especially when it comes to the company’s 6050-5. While the art school’s influential name isn’t included on the dial (like it is on the brand’s alternative silhouettes), the watch’s minimalist design paints a clear picture with its imitative qualities. A renowned Swiss Ronda movement sits at the center of this vintage example, which relies on its beige color scheme, black indices and numerals, and Hesalite glass to complement its artistic underpinnings. To elaborate on the 6050-5’s historic appeal, Junkers has created a palette of classic color combinations that look like they were pulled straight from a mid-century design studio, providing buyers with a character-imbued timepiece that still functions as a modern-day variant.
Defakto is known for its bold design choices, and with the company’s Bauhaus-inspired Akkord, minimalism is somewhat secondary. The watch’s 42mm case houses an aviation-inspired dial, dressed in black, alongside highly-visible Superluminova hands, fluorescent indexes, and a Swiss-made ETA 2824-2 movement. Accuracy aside, the Akkord sports some of the most ambitious design characteristics on our list, thanks to a three-piece 316L stainless steel construction, PVD-coated peripherals, and a German-made cowhide strap that references the art schools influential simplicity.
Uniform Wares M42
Uniform Wares’ M42 watch prides itself on bespoke minimalism, offering buyers a tasteful piece of wristwear that’s free of conventional trappings like branding, cumbersome additives, and exterior lugs. This 42mm variant boasts an accurate Swiss-made ETA 251.474 PRECIDRIVE movement, chronograph calendar complication, and anti-reflective properties that keep it on the top-end of minimalist Bauhaus watches, alongside quality-of-life additions like a Milanese Nappa Leather, laser-fused Titanium mesh, or Italian Caoutchouc Rubber strap. On the watch’s interior, diamond-cut hands, printed indexing, and a luminescent coating provide complementary accents to enhance its bold design.
Stowa Antea Klassik
Stowa’s Antea Klassik is a derivative of over 90 years of experience within the watch industry and brings its centurial composure to the forefront with strict homages to the Bauhaus art school. The series was redesigned by Hartmut Esslinger, who focused on the implementation of original typefaces, designs, and colors used by the masters of Bauhaus, while integrating a Peseux 7001 mechanical movement, temperature-blued steel hands, and a polished, stainless steel case for the contemporary minimalist. Legible lettering and accentuated details give the Klassik an undeniably refined aura, placing it near the top of our list as one of the most well-rounded and original examples to ever be produced.
Nomos Tangente Date
Nomos is relatively notable when it comes to Bauhaus-inspired wristwear, and the company’s Tangente Date is a perfect example of its commitment to high-quality revisions. Drawing staunch inspiration from original brands like Stowa and Lange, the company’s most prolific watch features a number of refined components, including an extra-large date window, tasteful numerals and typography, and a cleanly-tailored profile that’s as classy as they come. A stainless steel case protects the watch’s in-house built caliber DUW 4101 movement, tempered steel hands, and white-silver-plated dial, maintaining a refined image when paired with your favorite attire. At just 37.5mm, the Tangente Date is relatively small, but it leaves a big impression thanks to exceptional build qualities, refined materials, and the implementation of Horween’s Genuine Shell Cordovan leather.
Junghans Max Bill Chronoscope 100 Jahre Bauhaus
Junghans Max Bill Chronoscope 100 Jahre Bauhaus watch rounds out our list as a quintessential offering tailored toward the school’s most enthusiastic followers. In the 1950s, Bauhaus graduate Max Bill worked alongside Junghans to create a number of clock designs, and eventually, his influence would meld with the company’s wristwear offerings. Thus, the Max Bill range was born — and for the company’s 100th Anniversary, Junghans decided to celebrate the school with the Chronoscope 100 Jahre Bauhaus. The watch features a self-winding J880.2 movement, stainless steel, PVD-coated case, and a convex sapphire crystal that’s been treated with an anti-reflective coating, helping the watch’s exceptional design, typography, and motif to retain legibility, no matter the circumstance.
The 10 Best Men's Rolex Watches For Every Budget
If minimalism isn’t your cup of tea, head over to our guide on the best men’s Rolex watches for every budget, where you’ll find everything you need for a high-profile aesthetic.