There’s beauty to be found in stripping an item down to its absolute essentials. In watchmaking, this process of exposing the bare necessities can take many forms, ranging from Bauhaus-style minimalist designs to full-blown skeleton treatments. Young microbrand Lorier takes a lesser-traveled road to simplicity with its latest collaboration design, celebrating the look of a raw dial base. While bare-metal dial designs are not unheard of in the modern watch marketplace, this new model fully commits to the aesthetic of stainless steel for a truly striking effect. Designed in partnership with watch media outlet Worn & Wound, the Lorier x Worn & Wound Hydra II Limited Edition is a strikingly monochrome twist on the brand’s super-compressor sports watch design with a charmingly pared-back ethos.
Although the stainless steel case of the Lorier x Worn & Wound Hydra II Limited Edition measures in at a svelte 39mm-wide, this design should carry a sizeable wrist presence thanks to its stylized rendition of the midcentury sports watch form. The overall design is dominated by its dramatically long, tapering athletic lugs, leading to a sizeable lug-to-lug measurement of 47mm. However, this heightened design gives the watch a sharply sporting character in images, with a narrow smooth bezel, twin crosshatch-topped crowns, and a continuous straight chamfer that runs from lug tip to lug tip, complementing the mostly brushed finish with a touch of polished flash. Around back, the brand fits the Hydra II Limited Edition with a signed engraved caseback, commemorating Worn & Wound’s 10th anniversary. Worn & Wound has indicated this will be the last collaboration model to feature this engraving design, as the outlet is drawing its anniversary celebration to a close. Like the standard Hydra II, Lorier rates this model for a respectable 100 meters of water resistance.
The dial of the Lorier x Worn & Wound Hydra II Limited Edition is undoubtedly the centerpiece of the design, with a dramatic monochrome brushed stainless steel treatment. The main dial surface takes on a radially brushed finish, offering a more straightforward visual punch in images while allowing the natural tone variations of the metal to shine through. Lorier continues this natural metal treatment through the wide, sharply brushed handset, and offers even more radial brushing on the sloped rotating inner bezel. The brand renders its dial text, long printed minutes scale, and slender printed indices in charcoal gray rather than a harsher true black in images, keeping the monochrome design intact and balanced. Even the 6 o’clock date window is finished in a dial-matching light gray, integrating smoothly into the overall dial layout in images. The only break from this clean gray-on-gray look comes from the 12 o’clock triangle on the bezel scale, which adds a bold red accent to the design and allows for easy bezel orientation at a glance.
Lorier turns to the ubiquitous Miyota 9015 automatic movement to power the Lorier x Worn & Wound Hydra II Limited Edition. The 9015 has been an affordable mainstay of independent brand lineups for years, and while it may lack some of the refinement of more upmarket Miyota offerings it still offers rugged performance. This includes a solid 42 hour power reserve at a 28,800 bph beat rate. To complete the design, Lorier fits the Lorier x Worn & Wound Hydra II Limited Edition with its smoothly brushed stainless steel flat link bracelet.
By stripping its midcentury-inspired twin crown sports watch design back to bare metal throughout, the new Lorier x Worn & Wound Hydra II Limited Edition brings a dramatic and stylishly minimal new spirit to the line. Only 150 examples of the Lorier x Worn & Wound Hydra II Limited Edition will be made, and the watch will be available for purchase exclusively through Worn & Wound’s Windup Watch Shop online sales platform starting at 12 PM EDT on April 15, 2022. MSRP for the Lorier x Worn & Wound Hydra II Limited Edition stands at $499 as of press time. For more details, please visit the Windup Watch Shop.