If you’re looking to improve your life, you would do well to heed the words of Henry David Thoreau when he said: “Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify.” Whether consciously or not, that same notion must have been on the minds of the design team of the wristwatch and sunglasses company Kapten & Son. Founded and headquartered in Germany, the brand has offices in New York and Melbourne, Australia, and designs products with a decidedly universal appeal. How do they manage that? Simple. (That’s the answer, not a lead into a longer explanation, FYI.)
And though there are dozens of different watches to choose from, selecting the right Kapten & Son watch(es) for your wrist is remarkably — you guess it! — simple, too.
The face layout of every Kapten & Son watch is nearly identical. All feature the Roman numerals XII up top and VI at the bottom and have notches marking each hour. Some watches also have smaller marks for the minutes, others omit them. That’s it, two layouts from which to choose, and both are crisp and uncluttered.
The cases of all Kapten & Son watches are round and slender, and are wrought in either gold, silver, or black. (That’s gold- and silver-colored metal, for the record, not actual precious metals). The hands and numerals/notches match the color of the case, so a watch with a gold body will have gold hands and gold numerals and hour markings. And the actual faces come in white or black.
So, to recap, when choosing the face and body of your Kapten & Son wristwatch, you choose from one of three body and “hardware” colors and one of two face colors. You can also select the watch face diameter, which is either 36 millimeters or 40 millimeters. (I, and most men, go with a 40, most women with a 36. And yes, many of the watches are perfectly unisex.)
How, then, do Kapten & Son chronometers come in so many dozens of different varieties? It’s all about the bands. You can choose from leather to nylon to metallic mesh bands. You can pick bright multicolored striped bands, demure black, gray, or brown bands, slender feminine bands, thick and manly bands, and everything in between. The elegant simplicity of the face and body of a Kapten & Son watch allows these chronometers to be easily dressed up or down based on the band; the same watch face could be worn with business or even more formal attire or with a t-shirt and sandals with a switch of the band, really.
And as the most expensive Kapten & Son watch out there costs only $169 (many are only $99), you can afford to get a couple if you can’t quite decide which combination of face, case, and brand is right for you.