Admittedly, as a fan of Euro-English designers like Paul Smith , I can be a little snobbish. I’ve often kept my distance from American designers like Ralph Lauren; that giant horse riding polo player logo on the polo shirt isn’t really my thing. Then one day last year, everything changed.
Before me, lay some of the finest timepieces I’ve ever laid my eyes upon. The truth is, many enthusiasts like myself thumb our noses at designer watch brands. But this, Ralph Lauren Slim Classique collection was unlike anything I had ever encountered. Impeccably slim- a reflection of modernity. Hand-guided guilloché, detailing and craftmanship- hallmarks of refinement and a symbol of care luxuriant. I found myself casting aside pre-conceived (yes, snobby) notions of horology. This was one designer who knew his stuff, this was Ralph Lauren. (recently written in Augustman.com)
Classic Elegance: Ralph Lauren Slim Classique
What’s in a name? Everything for many watch collectors. But here, I find myself in defence of Mr. Lauren, his men’s luxury watch, with it’s opaline dials and barleycorn pattern with 80 waves in a series of spirals was everything maisons de haute horlogerie were about- fine watchmaking skills of the highest levels. Available in white and rose gold, it’s everything I want in a wardrobe where I strive for classic elegance that withstands the tests of time.
Birth of the Ralph Lauren Sporting Elm
He is a well known collector of fine automobiles. Whether it’s his 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, rare McLaren F1 LM or Mercedes 300SL Gullwing. Nothing shows passion like a man inspired.
So passionate was he that when he conceived of the Ralph Lauren Sporting, no official name had been given. The Ralph Lauren Sporting Elm was a men’s designer watch born of his love for his much adored 1938 Bugatti Type 57SC Atlantic Coupe.
Stainless steel case with imagination arresting loupe d’orme or elm burl in homage to the Bugatti’s iconic wood dashboard. The watch was one part luxury timepiece, one part high end carpentry and half part Bugatti. It was the closest anyone would come to transferring one’s love for a car into a piece of jewellery for the wrist.
Sword shaped hands, small seconds and closed railroad-style track in the small seconds subdial, the Ralph Lauren Sporting is aesthetics and functionality in one. Powered by a manual winding RL98295 calibre made by IWC for Ralph Lauren. It forever changed my life (and view) of American design and of one, Mr. Ralph Lauren.