Introducing: Mr Jones Watches “Berry Late!”
Mr Jones Watches is back at it again with a new release. “Berry Late!”, designed by Ana Dias, is a swirling pink pastel alphabet soup of a watch most of the time. But once every hour, the cute letters and strawberries align to spell out a very clear message. It literally says, “Fuck it! Time is just a social construct.” It’s cheerful nihilism at its best and a sentiment I’m here for.
It’s not every day I get to use the “F word” in a release article (though I have thought of doing so often enough). Regarding Mr Jones Watches, though, it seems par for the course, if still a pleasant surprise. Mr Jones Watches notoriously makes affordable art watches not for telling the time. “Berry Late!” checks those boxes as well and diversifies an already-eclectic catalog with some overdue crassness.
Berry Late! — A pleasing contradiction
A first glance reveals a downright cheerful watch. The pink of the dial and whimsy of the letters, clouds, and strawberries makes for a watch that doesn’t make a lot of sense but is nice to look at. Fitting, then, that the message that reveals itself makes an argument for the absurdity of time in the cutest way.
“Berry Late!” is a watch that is so self-aware that it negates the purpose of its own existence.
I’ll try to refrain from getting too meta here, but really, isn’t not only time but all of horology a bit absurd? It’s something most other watch brands dance around, selling us watches that can go to the bottom of the ocean or the Moon but never will. Never mind that the watch itself is obsolete. Mr Jones Watches brings the fallacies of why we love watches into the light in a way that says, “It’s okay.” “Berry Late!” is a watch that is so self-aware that it negates the purpose of its own existence. But it also recognizes and embraces the joy in existing and being interacted with nonetheless. There may be a deeper message here, but that’s above my pay grade.
F-ing cool mechanics
At only £195 on a grey suede strap, it should come as no surprise that the movement within the “Berry Late!” is a simple time-only quartz. For a watch that brings to light the absurdity of its own existence, we’re lucky it has a movement at all. We’re lucky it’s not just an NFT, honestly. The “hands” in this watch are actually meticulously printed transparent discs. These achieve the necessary range of movement of characters and fruit around the dial. Though Mr Jones Watches strongly resists making watches for telling time, should you need to, the strawberries in “Berry Late!” can help you out.
The whole strawberry indicates the hour, while the chomped one is the minute hand per se. The berries and almost everything else meander around throughout the hours, only coming into alignment and clearly spelling out the message when the strawberries are opposite each other. That message — “Fuck it! Time is just a social construct” — almost goes without saying in this watch, though I’m happy it’s spelled out. Adding to the absurdity and joy of the watch is the fact that the message aligns differently each hour. It all depends on where the strawberries fall opposite each other each hour.
Still a watch, still has specs
Though “Berry Late!” could almost exist on sheer nihilistic willpower and ether alone, it still has a case and crystal, both of which are nicely executed. The 37mm case is stainless steel with slender lugs that sweep down to an 18mm lug spacing. The crystal is sapphire. “Berry Late!” has a water resistance rating of 50 meters, though you aren’t going to want to get that suede strap wet.
Limited to the point of temporary annihilation
Mr Jones Watches initially made only 200 pieces of this limited edition. Not surprising to me, it has already sold out as of this writing. Not to worry, though. Mr Jones Watches let us know that there should be another batch in the summer. We at Fratello were a little slow announcing this release, for which we apologize. I think it fitting though, given the name of the watch. At least it wasn’t berry late! (I’m berry sorry.)
You can find more information about Mr Jones Watches and the “Berry Late!” on the brand’s official website. You can find more of me on Instagram @WatchingThomas.