A watch is more than just a timepiece. It’s an accessory that can make you feel like you’re wearing the latest trends, or accessorizing with something vintage-inspired. If you’re in the market for a new watch, but want to avoid big brands like Rolex or Omega that are too expensive, then consider microbrand watches.
The term microbrand refers to independent watchmakers who manufacture their own products and sell them directly to consumers. There are many micro brands that offer unique wristwear for horology fans of every type. Whether it be high-end luxury watches, affordable yet luxurious pieces, or even simple and subtle everyday jewelry. We’ve compiled this list of 15 boutique watch brands to get your started on your search for the perfect timepiece!
Founded in 2015 and based in Glasgow, Scotland, Anordain is a microbrand watch brand that focuses on quality, style and affordability. They make watches for the modern man who appreciates timeless design, sharp aesthetics and high-quality timepieces. Inspired by the beauty of the Northern Lights, Anordain has created a collection of colorful watches with elegant details such as stainless steel bands and genuine leather straps.
Anordain strives to provide an excellent customer experience through its online store, website, and social media channels. The company believes in open communication to ensure that customers feel seen and heard while making their purchase decisions. Anordain also prides itself on its quality products at competitive prices—making it easy to find your perfect timepiece!
Based in Chicago and founded by watch enthusiast and U.S. Military veteran Andrew Perez, Astor+Banks has really come into their own over the last couple of years. The brand’s name reflects its American heritage – Astor+Banks were namesakes of two iconic New York City landmarks: The Astor Hotel and Bank of America Tower on Wall Street. Together they represent not only places where business happens. But also signify roots, history, and legacy – three qualities that are embodied in every one of their products.
The company wanted to create something that was unique and not the same as other brands on the market at the time. Starting out with just one model of watch, they now offer eight different models for men and women. Each piece has its own character; some are more masculine while others exude femininity. All Astor+Banks watches combine elegance and simplicity to create a timeless aesthetic that will never go out of style.
Autodromo is another brand that caters to a specialized segment. But they do so in a more roundabout and completely different way. The New York-based brand was founded by designer and automotive enthusiast Bradley Price in 2011 as an automotive-themed, design-forward lifestyle brand. Their designs are strong, sleek and modern with subtle nods to motorsports history. They have an extensive range of watches including chronographs, vintage-inspired pieces and even some two-tone options. For the seasoned watch aficionado or someone looking for something new, Autodromo offers something to suit everyone’s tastes!
The construction of the case also makes it very lightweight which is perfect for those who want to wear their watches all day long without them weighing down on their wrists or arms. Each Autodromo watch has a unique design with an emphasis on clean lines. And shapes paired with contrasting colors for maximum impact. This allows you to mix and match various models depending on your mood or outfit for any occasion!
Founded in Paris in 2017 by Etienne Malec as a sort of tribute to his late father’s passion for watch collecting, Baltic creates original vintage-inspired designs like their popular Aquascaphe diver and GMT. They are passionate about the design of their watches and the materials used to make them. All of their timepieces are made from stainless steel, but they offer different case sizes for both men and women.
They came together to create watches with an emphasis on design, quality and affordability. The company’s mission is to provide reliable and affordable watches to those who want something more than just an off the shelf timepiece. Baltic has been steadily growing ever since its inception. And now offers a wide range of watches for different tastes and styles.
Boldr is another microbrand watch brand that specializes in making quality, timeless watches for men and women. They offer customers an opportunity to purchase high-quality, Swiss-made watches at an affordable price. Boldr strives to provide its customers with inspiring designs and innovative products that promote social responsibility.
The comoany’s goal is to give the customer an experience that feels like they are buying from their best friend. They want customers to feel comfortable with the process of purchasing a new timepiece, knowing that they will be taken care of long after the purchase has been made. Boldr believes in giving customers the best bang for their buck by offering a variety of styles, colors, and materials at an accessible price point.
Founded by designer Jonathan Ferrer in 2015, New York City-based Brew takes its inspiration from coffee. They take pride in their production process and have an artisanal approach to craftsmanship, which manifests itself in the quality of their products. They hope to create watches that are as beautiful and unique as these beverages. Brew offers many different styles, including chronographs, divers, and minimalist options with interchangeable straps.
Their sleek, minimalist design will help you stay trendy and trendy today. They offer both leather bands and metal bracelets. So you can personalize your look to fit your mood or style of dress. With such a wide variety of colors available as well as interchangeable straps, Brew has something for every type of man. If you’re looking for an affordable gift this holiday season or just want to treat yourself with some new accessories, then head over to their online store.
With its roots in design and engineering, Dan Henry watches are designed with an emphasis on quality, aesthetics, and affordability. The company aims to offer you a stunning timepiece at a reasonable price point without sacrificing quality or style. The watch dials are minimalist, yet they still provide all of the information you need to know about your timepiece.
They produce a range of different styles from vintage-inspired dress watches to modern sports models. Their goal is to create affordable timepieces with an emphasis on quality construction, timeless design, and high-performance movements. With sleek designs and a variety of styles to choose from, there is no wonder why they have become so popular among those who love fashion and style. All watches of this microbrand come with a two year warranty on parts and labor which proves that this brand is confident in the quality of their product.
Farer is an independent British watch company driven by a horological passion for detail, design and most importantly, difference. They are extremely proud to be part of a new generation of watchmakers playing a (small) part to define the future of an industry with such legacy.
They believe mechanical watches are as relevant today as they ever have been, as we all search for meaningful products that are inherently well made and have the ability to stand the test of time. As a result, every collection they design has a authentic purpose in mind. Whether that be for land, sea or air all they are built for adventure and designed to be enjoyed for a lifetime. The brand aims not only to provide customers with well-made, stylish timepieces but also includes helpful customer service. With the motto “less is more,” the microbrand strives to create watches that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing.
Vancouver-based Halios has been around in the microbrand game longer than most, having been born on online forums in 2009. The Halios team consists of passionate individuals who are dedicated to designing and manufacturing high-quality timepieces at accessible prices. Their designs are inspired by Scandinavian minimalism, the great outdoors, and vintage military styles.
I’ve been wearing their watches for the past few months and absolutely love them! The watches are sleek, minimalistic, and fashionable. They also have an amazing customer service team who is always available to answer questions about any of their products. If you’re looking for a new watch brand to add to your collection or want something different than what you already wear, Halios might be the perfect choice for you!
Monta is a microbrand watch brand that was born in 2016. The founders of Monta, two young entrepreneurs with an eye for design and quality, wanted to offer the world watches that were beautiful and affordable. Together they created a line of minimalistic watches named after famous mountains across the globe: Everest, Kilimanjaro and Denali (among others).
They offer a variety of styles, from dress to sporty, so you can find the perfect look for your wrist. It’s not just about the product they sell but also how they present themselves as an organization. The quality of their products are guaranteed with each purchase because they use only premium materials to produce them. If you’re looking for high-quality timepieces at affordable prices, Monta may be the right choice for you!
Nodus is based in Los Angeles and was founded by childhood friends Wesley Kwok and Cullen Chen, who took their shared passion for watches and decided to make a business out of it in 2017. The company specializes in mechanical timepieces, which means there are no batteries or quartz movements to worry about. Mechanical watches require regular maintenance. But they also have an assurance of quality that can’t be matched by cheaper quartz models.
All Nodus watches come with the manufacturer’s 2-year warranty for full peace of mind against any manufacturing defects or accidents while wearing your new timepiece! The watches are designed with versatility and practicality in mind, all while maintaining premium quality and design. The microbrand watches offer an alternative to what many other brands offer, without breaking the bank.
Like Monta, Norqain is competing against the big-time Swiss brands as much as they are against other micros — probably even more so. They’re actually based in Switzerland, a rarity for a microbrand. And they have got some real industry heft behind them, with one of the co-owners coming from the family who owned Breitling for 40 years.
All of their watches have Swiss-made movements, sapphire crystal glass for scratch-resistance, and offer water resistance up to 100 meters. Furthermore, they aim for the utmost precision when it comes to timekeeping with Japanese quartz movements that are accurate within 10 seconds per year. They also offer two lines of watches: one line offers more classic designs. While the other has more contemporary styles which include unisex pieces too. With the help of their expert team, Norqain has created an impressive portfolio with various models and styles to choose from. And if you want something unique, they microbrand can even design your dream watch!
Oak & Oscar
Oak & Oscar is another microbrand that competes at a higher price point. Founded in Chicago in 2015 by Chase Fancher (eponymous Oscar is Fancher’s dog), who left an unfulfilling corporate job to strike out on his own. Their minimalist timepieces are available for purchase on their website and through select retailers worldwide. Oak & Oscar watches are hand-assembled by skilled craftsmen to ensure the highest level of quality and attention to detail.
The brand is committed to upholding their reputation of delivering high-quality, elegant timepieces with incredible value. They use only the best materials and we invest in both technical innovation and timeless design. Their designs are always up-to-date. So you can feel confident wearing one on your wrist no matter what your style may be.
Born on online watch forums and founded by enthusiast Steve Laughlin in 2008, Raven started out making homage dive watches before delving into their own more original designs. Microbrands in general offer more creativity and originality than most larger brands and Raven is no exception. The company offers a lot of variety when it comes to the colors, shapes, materials and sizes for their watches. They even have some that can be personalized!
Raven believes that consumers deserve more than just an affordable product; they want something with their own personality. That’s why every Raven watch celebrates individuality at its core. With features like custom engraving on the caseback for personalization and hand-picked straps you can swap out depending on your mood or outfit of the day.
RZE is the newest brand on this list, having launched their first watch in February 2020. Just a few weeks before COVID-19 effectively shut down the world. Despite the bad luck timing, the brand has thrived, having already grown to feature a robust catalog of three well-received models.
Their watches are crafted with precision, and they offer limited edition models. As well as more affordable options for those looking for something new to wear or give as a gift. The microbrand watches, which all come with a warranty and guarantee of authenticity, can be purchased on their website and shipped worldwide. RZE makes sure to use state-of-the-art engineering and technology. So they can offer their customers an excellent product at a reasonable price.
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In the world of horology, there are many brands that push boundaries and innovate with their timepieces. The 15 microbrands we’ve featured are all high-end watchmakers with unique design aesthetics that will appeal to different tastes–from classic European designs to contemporary American creations.
We hope this post has given you some ideas about where else you might look in order to find the perfect timepiece for your needs! Let us know in the comment below at SenseOrient which ones have caught your eye or if there’s another brand that should be on our list!