WT Author is one of those brands that I have been pleasantly surprised to run across. Along with some rather unique styling (as shown on the WT Author 1905), there is an overarching storyline that accompanies that watches; this is something we explored a bit with our review of the WT Author 1914. As we noted in that review, the watches (and their stories) jump forward in time. With their latest release, the brand is going ahead 15 years, with the introduction of the WT Author 1929.
Given the era being referenced, that puts us squarely into the run-up to the Great Depression. For the watches themselves, they really do not have any overt ties to that calamity. The watch takes the form of a cushion case this time around (one of my favorite case shapes), with the signature ribbing still showing up on the sides, as well as the red signed crown and the “casino chip” caseback. If you pick up one of the 100 pieces they’re making of the black-dial variant, that caseback has something a bit different.
For the first time, WT Author is exploring the use of an automatic. That means that, on this one version of the WT Author 1929, you have an exhibition caseback. Through it, of course, you can see the Citizen (Miyota) 9015 at work. While the movement itself does not appear to have any customization specific to the brand, it seems well-done. I also appreciate the fact that it appears to fill up a good portion of the 42mm case. Some of this is a bit of trickery to the eye (by focusing on the red bits on the caseback, you sort of include the inner edge of the metal along with the movement size). If there is a major faux pas we have seen over and over, it’s a too-large case with a tiny movement. This fortunately does not seem to be the case here.
This is also evidenced by the placement of the date wheel on the dial side, as it takes it’s place by replacing the number 3 on the dial; just a shame it is not color matched to the dial. There are some other colors (blue, white, and cream) available; those, however, feature a 513S quartz movement, and no date display. For me, the darker colors really show off the patterning that they have put on the dial of the WT Author 1929 (ok, to be fair, the cream dial does not have it). It has an almost guilloche appearance, though, at these price points, I am assuming it is stamped.
No matter, it still adds a lovely bit of depth to the dial, and works well with the raised and applied indices on the dial. On the other hand, the cream dial appears to have the numerals printed on, which keeps with the over flat (and matte) look of the watch. Font is consistent across the versions, as is are the pomme hands. The hands on the watches are color matched to their numerals, with the exception of the white dial WT Author 1929; in that case, they are blue, which gives a nice contrast.
Ultimately, if you are thinking about picking up a WT Author 1929, the decision really comes down to which style you like better. Yeah, the automatic movement might be a temptation, but the brand is positioning things more as a focus on the aesthetics, and the movement coming in second. It is a bit of an experiment (only 100 versions will be made, while 125 of each of the other colors are being produced); if things go well, we are lead to believe that we will see more mechanical movements from the brand in the future. For now, we have the one. If you want to pick one up, the pre-order price for September is $691 (with the price going to $768 starting in October), and the quartz is going for $460 now ($537 next month). For my part, I am intrigued in this iteration for the brand. We will, of course, bring you our hands-on impressions once the WT Author 1929 hits the streets. In the meantime, be sure to let us know in the comments what you think about the design path the brand has chosen. wtauthor.com
- Brand & Model: WT Author 1929
- Price: $460-691 (pre-order); $537-$768 (MSRP)
- Who we think it might be for: You’re a fan of what the brand has been producing, and enjoy a good cushion case
- Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen?: I’m on the fence about this – I’ll have to see it in person to know for sure
- What spoke to me the most about this watch: The best part, for me, is the patterning that shows up on the dials