Another year is officially winding down in the HODINKEE Shop, and today, we wanted to take a moment to look at a few of the highlights that kept us – and you – horologically engaged during a year unlike any other. Not only did we introduce more watches and watch accessories than ever this year, but we also more than doubled the HODINKEE Shop’s selection of brands, allowing us to offer one of the most expansive watch selections out there, anywhere. And with 2020 coming to a close, we’re starting to get even more excited about all that 2021 has to offer – trust us, you’re going to love it.
Enjoy this brief look at the past 12 months in the HODINKEE Shop, and we’ll see you next year!
New Brands We Welcomed
We introduced 18 new brands to the HODINKEE Shop in 2020, starting the year out with a pair of prestige companies in Montblanc and Blancpain. It wasn’t long after that, in the middle of March, that our strategy for the year pivoted, and – as HODINKEE founder Ben Clymer outlined in his Open Letter to the Watch Community – we launched the New Partner Initiative, in order to best assist the watch community by opening our doors to brands in need of additional retail distribution.
The New Partner Initiative resulted in a number of familiar faces joining the HODINKEE Shop’s ranks, including Autodromo and Laurent Ferrier. It also allowed us the opportunity to spotlight a number of young brands on the rise whose stories – and watches – always struck a chord with us. Those brands include NORQAIN from Switzerland, UNIMATIC from Milan, and Merci from Paris.
As spring transitioned to summer, we welcomed a number of heavy hitting brands that showcased just how diverse and eclectic watches can be at all price points – 2020 showed us that you truly don’t have to break the bank to enjoy a fun, new watch. Collections from G-SHOCK, Timex, and SWATCH all launched in the middle of 2020 and continued to expand as the year progressed.
And one of the 2020’s highlight moments for our team was working with Apple to bring Apple Watch to the HODINKEE Shop. We started with Series 5 over the summer, and brought you Series 6 as soon as it launched in September. Finally, at the end of November, we expanded our product selection once again with the addition of the high-end speakers and headphones from Bang & Olufsen.
The Limited Edition Watches Of 2020
One result of 2020’s unpredictability was a delay in our initial launch schedule for this year’s limited edition productions. It wasn’t until July, in fact, that the first HODINKEE limited edition watch appeared in the form of the SWATCH SISTEM51 and FLIK FLAK HODINKEE SUMMER EDITIONS, a pair of seasonally inspired affordable automatic watches fit for the whole family.
Our inaugural collaboration with Timex appeared a few months later, in October, with the no-date Q Timex HODINKEE Limited Edition. We next released a watch of which we’re particularly proud, the Grand Seiko Automatic GMT SBGM239 Limited Edition for HODINKEE, our very first project with the Japanese watchmaker.
Our friends at Merci in Paris were up next, with the long-in-the-works LMM-H01 Limited Edition for HODINKEE, a cool, grey-dial take on the brand’s signature manual-wind field watch. Our second SWATCH collaboration of 2020 was released on Black Friday at the end of November – and we think the SISTEM51 HODINKEE GENERATION 1990 is one of our best looking collaborations with the Swiss brand yet.
We closed 2020 out with a pair of back-to-back limited editions that signaled the power of collaboration. The Casio G-SHOCK Ref. 6900 By John Mayer brought us together with longtime HODINKEE friend and contributor John Mayer and G-SHOCK to create a unique take on the brand’s iconic 6900 series, inspired by a Casiotone SK-5 sampling keyboard that Mayer played growing up. Our final collaboration of the year was with Blancpain – our second limited project with the brand – the Fifty Fathoms MIL-SPEC Limited Edition for HODINKEE.
In the realm of accessories, we were also proud to bring back one of our oldest collaborations earlier this year: Drake’s for HODINKEE Pocket Squares.
In addition to the above limited edition projects we closely collaborated on, we also worked with a number of brands to bring you watches that we were fortunate to be granted some level of exclusive distribution. That means we were either the sole retailer, the exclusive e-commerce partner for the watch, or that it was simply available in the HODINKEE Shop before it could be purchased elsewhere.
The Seiko Prospex ‘Alpinist’ SPB123 was the first of these watches to enter the HODINKEE Shop in the first quarter of the year, and it was quickly followed by the Breitling Top Time Limited Edition – the first Breitling to join the HODINKEE Shop – and the TAG Heuer Carrera 160 Years Montreal Limited Edition. The Hamilton Intra-Matic Automatic 38mm ‘Champagne’ and the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf 53 Skin ‘Blue’ also joined the HODINKEE Shop later in 2020 as highlight-worthy, affordable additions. We were proud to work with ACCUTRON as one of the few retailers of the brand’s exciting new take on the original Spaceview, with the Spaceview 2020 Limited Edition Deluxe Set, which included a new book written by HODINKEE Editor-in-Chief Jack Forster.
Those weren’t all the exclusive releases we worked on this year. We showed you the Mido Ocean Star Decompression Timer 1961 Limited Edition in July, which proved to be so popular that we eventually brought on board an assortment of regular production Mido Ocean Star dive watches. We also partnered with Massena LAB to share with you the firm’s new pair of vintage-inspired chronographs, the attractive and detail-oriented Uni-Racer series.
And one of our most anticipated projects of 2020 involved working with the historic American brand BENRUS to bring the original Type I military dive watch back to life in laser-accurate form. Released on Veteran’s Day, the new-for-2020 BENRUS Type I is the first time this mil-spec classic has ever been released to the civilian market.
Other Watches We Loved In 2020
Of course, there were countless other watches we appreciated this year and that we shared with you in the HODINKEE Shop. Check out a few highlights below.
Have a moment to catch your breath before the New Year festivities get started? Check out a few of our favorite articles published this year in the HODINKEE Shop Journal.
Searching for some new horological reading to get 2021 started off on the right foot? Explore the HODINKEE Shop Library to discover all the books and magazines we have currently available. And right now, when you buy three or more volumes of HODINKEE Magazine, a 15 percent discount is applied automatically at checkout.
More In The HODINKEE Shop
We released a wide variety of products that we’re incredibly proud of in 2020, and we hope you enjoyed the ride as much as we did. Looking ahead, we have countless more exciting announcements in the works for 2021 that we can’t wait to share with you.
You can end the year by exploring some of our latest releases, as well as all of our classic collections, right here in the HODINKEE Shop.