Japan does the high-low thing absurdly well. Show up and you can find $200 cantaloupe or have a $3 convenience store sandwich that will blow your mind. You can buy cult denim dungarees or a pair of Uniqlo selvedge jeans for $30. And if you’re not prepared to shell out eight large for an iconic Grand Seiko, there’s a handsome steal of a timepiece you can afford. For proof of this, allow us to introduce you to a Japanese watchmaker you’ve probably never heard of: Orient.
Founded in Japan in 1950, Orient built its reputation as a maker of watches for men with Hibiki tastes and Sapporo budgets. Orient has recently become a more common sight here in the U.S. thanks in part to the fact that it’s now owned by Seiko Epson (parent company of both Seiko and Grand Seiko), but it’s certainly not taking over your Instagram feeds. And that’s fine. Because what you get for your money feels a little like thievery. You’ll see automatic movements (instead of quartz), sapphire crystals, impressive complications, and trend-free designs—whether you’re in the mood for a stainless steel weekend bang-around piece or something to dress up a suit. Cop one now before the hype kicks in.
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