For more insider watch coverage, get Box + Papers, GQ’s newsletter devoted to the watch world, sent to your inbox every Thursday. Sign up here.
When it comes to fashion, Chris Pine is known for, as we described it last spring, “freaking it.” Nobody rocks velvet suits, caftans, Bode tops, and just-reemerged-from-the-wilderness facial hair quite like Pine. For much of this epic style run, Pine has worn an iconic watch that served as a nice contrast to his wilder sartorial choices. “The actor is smart about balancing the wacky with the classic,” I wrote last summer. “His Day-Date is perfect for maintaining this delicate balance.” I’m glad to see Pine is starting to freak it a little with his wrist wear now, though. The actor wore a vintage 1950s Baume & Mercier while sitting front row at the Zegna’s Spring-Summer 2024 show in Milan this week.
In my four years of writing this column, I’ve literally never had the opportunity to write about Baume & Mercier. Pine extends these little gifts to me frequently: I never got to touch on caftans before he wore one, either. B&M’s absence is particularly surprising, though. The Geneva-based brand, founded in 1830, has been around for almost two centuries. It just goes to show how easy it is for celebrities to get sucked into the Rolex-Patek Philippe-Cartier-Audemars Piguet-Omega-Richard Mille vortex and never escape.
This Baume & Mercier is a worthy first spotting. The watch is all good looks on the surface: rose-gold case with a simple gold dial. But look closer and you’ll find something slightly unusual. Its muscular lugs (the arms that attach the watch to its strap) are larger than normal and sit atop the case. “Back in the ‘50s, lugs over the case was something Patek Philippe and Baume et Mercier did in some of their models, but nobody really did it very much,” Jonathan Darracott, Bonham’s global head of watches, told our friends at British GQ. The style has become something of a B&M signature—the brand uses a similar design on its Capeland model.
This exact piece came to Pine from the Los Angeles-based vintage shop Wanna Buy a Watch, where he spent roughly two hours one day buying five watches, according to the shop’s owner Ken Jacobs. “He was charming and personable and dressed to the nines in vintage garb,” Jacobs said. “He raised up his shoes to show us that he even had pennies in his Penny loafers!” On his wrist was “a modest vintage Movado calendar moonphase model” he bought on eBay.
As for the watches Pine bought at the shop. “He loved the design and condition of this 18-carat rose gold [Baume & Mercier] Capeland design dress model. He also bought a [yellow-gold] Bulova Curvex.”
Hailey Bieber’s Patek Philippe Nautilus
Bieber knows her watch sweet spot: dainty, dazzling, and gold. Much of her collection are gem-set classics. She owns a Rolex Datejust that she wore to meet French president Emmanuel Macron. Last week, she was spotted wearing this Nautilus that uses diamonds wherever possible: around the case and also standing in for the hour markers. While it’s smart to round out a watch collection, there’s also something delightful about knowing what you love and never wavering from it.
Leonardo Bonucci’s Swatch Neon To The Max
Even Swatch watches can become collectibles. In the ‘90s, the affordable brand released a multicolor neon watch known as the Grand Prix SCJ101. Vintage models of the piece sell for hundreds of dollars, many times its original retail price. But Swatch recently brought the watch back for just $150. Even Italian footballer Bonucci couldn’t resist copping one.
Anthony Black’s Rolex Daytona
Ahhh, to be a top NBA draft pick wearing a top-tier grail at only 19 years old. Black, the new Orlando Magic guard, wore Rolex’s Daytona, the watch of choice for many of his new colleagues. The Daytona is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. Maybe if Black has a breakout season, he can end the year with the recently announced insta-grail made in celebration of the 100th edition of Le Mans.