Hands-On With The Aevig Thor — A Linen-Dialed Dress Watch Of Modern Proportions
Aevig is not a brand located inside the Arctic Circle or in Valhalla itself. Nope, Aevig is the brand of Chip Yuen, and he’s based in the Netherlands. Chip, with a background in arts, design, filmmaking, and Chinese food — that’s the family business — founded Aevig in 2013. His love for watches from the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s shines through in every Aevig timepiece. Aevig is the ancient Norse word for “eternal”, and it represents Chip’s never-ending pursuit of perfection on his way to Valhalla. My first encounter with Chip’s watch vision resulted in a hands-on with the Aevig Thor, a linen-dialed dress watch of modern proportions.
My first impression of Chip was that he’s a precise and persistent guy. In his introduction of himself and the brand, it became clear that he has his own style and ways of doing things. The fact that he started his own watch brand in 2013 seemed only logical after hearing his story. One of the watches that stood out and that I wanted to try out myself was the Aevig Thor with its silvery linen dial.
The textile-like pattern is actually a random and imperfect crosshatch engraving on the dial.
The dial is not really made of linen, of course, but it has a structure that resembles linen. The textile-like pattern is actually a random and imperfect crosshatch engraving on the dial. And just like a guilloché dial, the nostalgic linen-like texture plays with the light and brings the watch to life.
The Aevig Thor is a linen-dialed dress watch XL
Have you ever seen a classic linen-dialed Rolex Datejust Ref. 1601? That’s probably the most famous example of a watch with a linen dial. Not that famous, but equally pretty, is the 1969 Grand Seiko 4522A-7000 with its “Turtle Shell’ case and soft shimmering linen dial. But despite the historical benchmarks, Chip wasn’t discouraged and gave the linen dial a go himself. The Rolex measures a very introverted and traditional 36mm, but to modern standards that’s a size XS. All of Chip’s watch designs have a bias toward vintage and recreate classic elegance in modernized proportions. And that’s why the Thor doesn’t measure 36mm, but 40mm instead. The height of the case is 11mm, but since the watch has a box sapphire — with anti-reflective coating on the inside — the total height reaches 12.5mm.
Clark and Gary versus Chris
On paper, 40 × 12.5mm measurements might have you thinking the Aevig Thor is a size XL, especially since it looks like a neoclassic dress watch. But the proportions work, and the height still allows the watch to slide discretely under a cuff. The vintage 36mm dress watches fit yesterday’s heroes like Clark Gable or Gary Cooper.
Chris Hemsworth should wear this watch walking down the red carpet. Or in his next BOSS commercial…
The 40mm Aevig Thor is a watch for contemporary style icons. And since we’re living in the age of Marvel’s cinematic multiverse, the Thor is perfect for Thor. Well, the guy who plays Thor. Chris Hemsworth should wear this watch walking down the red carpet. Or in his next BOSS commercial because that would really help the brand Aevig — dream big, Chip, and you can make it happen!
Have you noticed the subtle pie-pan shape of the dial?
Enough with all the unreal and mythological stuff, and let’s focus on the watch. Well, the steel case is clean and sober and has a length of 48mm. The size and shape give it a lot of presence on the wrist. It wears like a modern watch, with a lot of the wrist covered. But the look contradicts that because of the subtle pie-pan shape and the linen-like texture of the dial, of course. But also because there’s no date and the fact that the indexes and custom stick hands blend in with the silvery dial. Thanks to the way the light reflects off of them, the watch is still easy to read.
A red focal point
At first, I was not sure about the red applied Aevig logo at 12 o’clock, but since it’s the only colorful detail of the Thor, it’s like a visual focal point. It catches the eye, and after looking at the Norse logo, your eyes wander off and discover the subtleties. Like the small amounts of Swiss LumiNova that will help you read the time when the lights go low. Luminous material and dress watches do not always go well. But due to the large stick hands, there’s room for some lume, and it also doesn’t look out of place on the perimeter of the dial either. It’s a convenient upgrade without compromising the overall style of the Thor dress watch.
The choice of strap shows that Chip is a headstrong man of subtle taste. The color black is the obvious choice for a dress watch, but the premium calf leather shows heavy custom graining and a diagonally slanted tail end for a bold, original, and even slightly edgy look. It’s nothing too outrageous, but it’s tastefully distinctive.
The pin buckle shows the Aevig logo, and the attention to detail didn’t stop there.
Another nice feature is that a part of the strap is perforated at the back to ensure a bit of ventilation and extra comfort. The pin buckle shows the Aevig logo, and the attention to detail didn’t stop there. When you buy the Thor, it comes with an additional two-piece premium Perlon strap that’s also made in Germany. It’s all included in a leather travel pouch, which can hold up to two watches and also contains a spring bar tool.
Thor is powered by a hand-wound Miyota
The Thor’s pronounced fluted crown is quite big for a dress watch, but since this is a modern, large “dress watch 2.0”, it doesn’t look out of place. It also allows you to operate the Miyota 8N33 hand-winding movement. Through the see-through case back, the open-worked, manual-wind movement will not dumbfound seasoned Haute Horlogerie collectors. But what it will do is introduce a new group to the marvelous world of micro-mechanics. After turning the crown about forty times the Miyota is ready to display time for about forty hours with a claimed accuracy of about -20 /+40 seconds per day. Chances are, the Thor owner will be hooked for life.
One word of warning: don’t overwind the movement once you start feeling resistance. Winding it too frantically and forcefully might bring your fresh horological love to a crashing halt. Just treat and handle the Thor with care and love, and you’ll be fine.
Saving the best for last
I saved the best part for last, and that’s the price. The Aevig Thor costs €535, a very decent price for a watch that was brought to life using a lot of love for watches and a great eye for detail and design. The version with the linen dial is my favorite, but there are also “lightning blue”, “stark black”, and “grey brushed” versions available. If you’re looking for a watch that puts the focus on style, that will feel right at home in the (home) office, and also won’t look out of place when worn with more casual attire, the proof is in the combination with my denim shirt. The Thor is an XL dress watch with a broad appeal. Not only newcomers will appreciate the Thor, as I’m sure it can also make a good impression on more experienced watch fans. It sure did here at Fratello HQ.
For more info on Thor and on the other watches from Aevig, please visit the brand’s official website.
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