Christopher Ward's C8 Flyer is probably the best watch you can buy under £500
An aviation watch that actually looks nice
Buying a nice watch can be harder than you think. You want something that tells the time, sure, but also has the right heft for your particular wrist. And you want a design that looks great but not one you’ll ever get sick of: you have to look at that hunk of metal and leather sitting clasped just below your hand all day, every day. It’s not easy.
There are different watches for different people: people of different sizes and styles and wants and needs. If you want a great-looking watch with all that smart Swiss gear stuffed inside it, however, like it’s a horological cordon bleu, then you can do way worse than Christopher Ward’s C8 Flyer watch. Aviation watches can often look like an absolute mess, but the C8 Flyer combines tech with heritage in a refreshingly understated manner.
The brand used to bear the tagline “the cheapest most expensive watches in the world” thanks to their MO of cutting out the price-inflating middleman, and Christopher Ward’s designs are timeless without being boring: a natural Tiber leather strap (with hand-stitched detailing) and a simple watch-face, a diamond-like carbon case and pleasingly-crafted winder (it’s called a ‘crown’, apparently), gun metal hands and glow-in-the-dark numbers – it’s got a lot going on above and below its matte-black Quartz dial and deep-stamped screw-down backplate. And it’s only £450. You get what they mean by that old tagline now.