Italian brand Full Spot, offers customers a growing range of incredibly affordable watches in myriad colour combinations. If you like expression, you might find a place in your heart (and maybe even a place on your wrist or your pocket) for a Full Spot watch. This is not an article that deals with high-end horology. This is a review of a clever little brand that deals in a range of rubber-based accessories. If you only care for expensive watches, this brand might not be for you; if you’re interested in all kinds of wrist wear, then read on!
I’m not even going to make you wait for this: the Full Spot O Clock watch head starts at €13 and the interchangeable rubber straps are €6 a pop. The Full Spot O Chive pocket watch probably falls short of breaking the bank with a price tag of €29. There is also a pretty little fob watch available, which exploits the strangely sparse market niche of fob/chain watches. Priced at €29, the Full Spot O Click offers women a different way to tell the time. Made of wipe-clean plastic, the Full Spot O Click might find a few fans in those who work in sterilised environments like hospitals or nurseries.
Let’s breeze through this whole range, picking out the most appealing aspects of each model, and the most attractive variants thereof. Starting with the Full Spot O Click, as it is the least prolific of the bunch, this watch stands out for its unusual mode of attachment to the body. Hanging from a chain, the “bejewelled” dial makes this cutesy piece more jewellery than timepiece.
It’s funky in shape and style, and made funkier still by its wide range of colour options. Fifteen colours including a swatch of neons, a couple of metallics, and a raft of rainbow choices, this is a practical timepiece for those whose jobs prevent them from wearing anything on the wrist and uniforms don’t facilitate the wearing of a pocket watch. For less than €30, it’s an affordable part-time accessory. I’m not a massive fan of the sparkles, but they do look kind of cool on the gold tone one, which gets the nod as my favourite of the bunch.
The Full Spot O Chive pocket watch is totally bizarre. The dial is clean and uncluttered, and the case is sleek and unremarkable. But the materials (soft-touch rubber coating and plastic) and the colours are just insane. This is like nothing else I have seen in this price bracket. These watches, which are good quality considering they come in at less than €30, have the potential to be the Toy Watch phenomenon of the pocket, but minimal cross-channel (let alone cross-Atlantic) exposure, keeps these arresting accessories from making it big.
It’s named O Chive, with the tag-line, “The first onion that doesn’t make you cry,” presumably a reference to its silhouette. There are 13 standard colours to choose from: red, pink, yellow, light blue, navy blue, green, fluorescent yellow, fluorescent pink, fluorescent green, black, white, cream, and burgundy. Additionally, the pocket watch is available in three types of wooden housing (zebrawood, oak, and mahogany), and also two new types of camouflage print (cream and grey). The wood and camo versions are hard to come by, and tend to retail for a few Euros more, but are great additions to any collection.
The camouflage ones are notable for their black dials, which set them apart from the other pocket watches. One nice design element of these watches is the simplicity of the hands. The second hand in particular is notable for the complete absence of a counterpoise (the little tail that sticks out from the centre to balance the weight of the indicating end). This makes the dial look like a medical scale – clean and precise, with nothing to display but the measurement of time. One thing to note, though, is that these “wood” watches are not actually coated in real wood, but the effect works pretty well, and the imitative composite will fare better than the genuine article.
The pocket watch chain of the Full Spot O Chive is made of metal and painted white (clack for the camouflage versions). It has a reassuring weight, which is a nice touch for a timepiece that is about as light as they get. In terms of stand-out performers, I’d say the zebrawood or the yellow are my favourites. It’s just so weird to see such bright colours on pocket watches – the neon might be a step too far, but that’s not to say I won’t be buying one of those neon green monsters if I can find some shoes to match.
So moving onto to the main event, the Full Spot O Clock. The Full Spot O Clock is the original watch from Full Spot, and their most diverse. The original watch head, which can be easily popped out of its rubber strap to instantly change the appearance, is totally white, with a plain dial, white, luminous hands, and a white crown. Since this model’s release, there have been several iterations including officially licensed Disney models, camouflage dials, shiny dials, dials with minute markers, coloured hands, splashes of paint over the dial, neon faces, colour-code dials to match the straps, safari print dials, mirrored dials, gold and silver tone dials, and dials with numbers. All of these watch heads are compatible with every one of the rubber straps, resulting in literally hundreds of combinations. Check out the Disney models. They either feature a sketch of a classic character or the well-known silhouette of Micky’s head. They are really excellent, collectible pieces and cost a fraction more than the standard Full Spot O Clock at €18.
The newest additions to the collection are the “Splash,” “Coloured Hands,” and “60 Seconds” watch heads. With the Splash watch heads, we see a largely white background, based on the original Full Spot O Clock watch, with different paint splashes and colour-coded seconds hands adorning the dial. This watch head costs €18. It might be a few Euros more, but you get a striking watch for the money. It looks like something that might have hit peak popularity in early nineties New York, but its retro cool still packs a punch in 2015.
The “Coloured Hands” model features colour-coded hands, designed to accent the wide choice of rubber straps available. The Full Spot O Clock Coloured Hands is available in three colour palettes. The “Red” option has an orange hour hand, a red minute hand, and a yellow second hand. It’s a very summery looking watch head and would coordinate well with any of the hot colours. The “Blue” version sports royal blue hour and seconds hands, and a navy minute hand. The “Green” variant boasts a kelly green hour hand, a forest green minute hand, and an olive green seconds hand. I can see two main disadvantages to the Coloured Hands model. Firstly, the colour on the hands leaves you somewhat “strap-bound,” in that not all colours will look right with your chosen watch head. Secondly, in order to make the most of the colour on the hands, Full Spot have reduced the luminant in the hands to small dots at the tips, meaning these watches are not quite as user friendly as their forerunners.
Finally, the Full Spot O Clock 60 Seconds is available in two colours, either red on white or blue on black. The red on white version features grey hour markers and black minute/second markers, a grey hour hand, a black minute hand, a red seconds hand, a white case, and a red crown; the blue on black model also has grey hour markers, but white minute/second markers, a light grey hour hand, a charcoal minute hand, a blue seconds hand, a black case, and a blue crown. This watch again reduces the luminant in favour of cohesive styling. It looks great, and although the slightly more advanced colour palette restricts your strap options, it maybe doesn’t matter because it has enough character on its own.
The standard Full Spot O Clock watch head is €13. The Full Spot O Clock Splash, Full Spot O Clock Coloured Hands, and the Full Spot O Clock 60 Seconds watch heads are all €18. The rubber straps for the Full Spot O Clock cost €6 apiece and come in the following sizes: XS/14.8cm. S/16cm, M/18cm, L/20cm and 34 colours. The Full Spot O Chive pocket watch costs €29 for the standard colours, with the wood and camouflage a couple of Euros more. The Full Spot O Click retails for a price of €29 as well. All of these watches are water resistant to 30m and are powered by quartz movements made by Citizen. fullspot.it