From its clothes to its coveted leather goods to its watches, Hermès remains committed to upholding the finest standards of craftsmanship across absolutely everything it does. Most of its products are made in France, and everything that bears the Hermès “H” is imbued with the same vibe of whimsical, easygoing gallic luxury. Except for straps for the Apple Watch and this incredibly chic 2012 Smart ForTwo, Hermès rarely collaborates, and when they do, the results are always impeccable. This consistency of tone and exacting attention to quality also applies to their watches, and the colourful new H08 with a case crafted from a solid block of composite material, is the latest example.
Hermès has not been a major player in the watch space for very long (relatively speaking), but it has already received more than its share of accolades for its blend of tasteful modern design and old-school savoir-faire. The H08, which launched in 2021, is Hermès’ entry into the booming sports watch market. Previously available in steel, titanium, and pink gold, the 2023 H08 collection pushes the design further with a case made from a high-tech composite of braided and aluminized glass fibre and slate powder and a range of colourful dial and strap combinations.
As with everything Hermès does, the brand approached the design of the H08 in their unique Hermès manner, and the result is something quite unlike any other sports watch out there. The most distinctive feature of the H08 is its 39mm x 39mm square case with rounded edges that are further softened by a circular recessed dial. The dial features an interior minute track, Arabic numerals in a custom Hermès font, and an oh-so-subtle date window between four and five. In true Hermès fashion, it abounds with other whimsical details, like an arrow seconds hand that appears to pierce the centre dial, and a minute hand that’s been excised to make the minute track more legible.
To this the newest H08 models add a composite case that (in the brand’s parlance) has “subtle silvery reflections against which the black ceramic bezel and crown stand out, creating light and shade effects that highlight the depth of the concrete-coloured dial.” A choice of yellow, green, blue, or orange accents on on the watch-glass seal, minutes track, and seconds hand, along with a rubber strap with a woven effect provides more contrast and a touch of fun.
Powering the H08 is the Manufacture Hermès movement H1837, a Swiss-made automatic with 50 hours of power-reserve, a mix of circular-grained, satin-brushed, and snailed finishes, and a sprinkling of Hermès H’s engraved into the rotor (all visible through the sapphire case back). It’s also water-resistant to 100m, which is just enough to make it the perfect accessory for your next trip to the Cote d’Azur.