We’ve all been waiting for a pandemic-free summer, and this year, the airports are going to be packed. If you plan on working through the warm period, or if it’s still gray and rainy like here in my northern climes, you’re going to have to bring your own sun. Personally, I don’t know of any better way to cheer up a rainy day than a popping watch, and with a #LEMONFRESH color, it’ll work a treat, I can guarantee it.

Whether it’s the brightest digital pop of yellow from a Casio G-Shock or an underrated Speedmaster with an uncharacteristic dial, these are my fun suggestions. You might be too wrist-shy for a full-on yellow dial, I get it. But just try popping on a cool rubber strap, and you might find yourself addicted to the sunny taste of lemon zest.

Image courtesy of Hypebeast

Casio G-Shock “CasiOak” GA-B2100C-9AER — now Multiband with Bluetooth

A G-Shock for summer is a given, but this time, the #LEMONFRESH flavor is new and improved. Three years after its release, the “CasiOak” has become a staple in the collection and surpassed its own ironic homage status. This time, Casio has imbued it with the triple threat of a new dial design, Bluetooth, and a squint-inducing yellow case. There’s a fittingly finished gray sunray dial — a proper upgrade from the matte black one we know — and a cheeky yellow pointer on the crescent indicator for the functions. From pastiche to classic, the “CasiOak”  has taken on a life of its own, as many have discovered what is the slimmest and best-wearing of all the resin G-Shocks. And at €159 direct from the EU Casio shop, summer value doesn’t get any better than this, dear Fratelli.

Villebrequin swimming trunks

Hello?! Summer is almost here, and what’s better than pulling on some bright yellow #LEMONFRESH shorts? Even if those pasty white legs will look even whiter for the first days in the sun, it’s still a great way to celebrate the end of facemasks and sun-lounger distancing. You’ll look like a boss on the beach wearing a well-cut pair of trunks for €155 from Villebrequin.com. It might be madly more than you spent on the H&M ones you left at an Airbnb last year, but these will last you for years to come. Sustainability doesn’t come cheap, my friend, but it’s worth it.


Doxa Sub 300 Divingstar

I might be a bit subjective here, as I personally own a Doxa Sub 300. But after almost a year, I can safely say that it’s one of my 5-8 absolute keepers. As the sensible collector that I (sometimes) am, I upgraded from a Doxa Sub 200. I enjoyed its blingy yellowness, but the iconic Sub 300 UFO shape had FOMO nibbling away at me. Was it a good upgrade? Absolutely, and while the orange Professional color is the Doxa trademark, the #LEMONFRESH Divingstar is a godsend. For me, this is the watch I put on if I’m having a slow morning, a bad day, rainy summer depression, you name it. Even though the dial is tiny — smaller than those in a few 38mm pieces of mine — it will no doubt improve your mood.


The comfortable time traveler

Amateur psychology aside, the Cousteau connection and its perfect ’60s demeanor also make it a time-traveling tool unlike any other. Its 42.5mm case feels nothing like its size, laying flat on the wrist with its shape making it wear way thinner than 13.4mm would suggest. And the dial? It’s busy in combination with the no-deco bezel, but the gloss lacquer hands make legibility a cinch, and the whopping minute hand is way cool. Do I dive? No. Do I love the superb mix of blingy polished steel and a brushed ergonomic case? Yes, and it is the only 42mm+ watch that I’ll happily wear for more than one day at a time. Its COSC-rated movement helps in this regard, besting the Black Bay Fifty-Eight I sold after a tempestuous affair. This is slim enough to wear cheekily with a suit, and I do. Worth every penny of its €2,490 price from Doxa, the Sub 300 Divingstar is a great alternative to big-brand ubiquity.


ISOfrane Strap

How about freshening up a monochrome tool watch with a dash of lemon? The original ISOfrane diver’s strap is just as cool as it was back in the ’60s and is available for $139 from Isofrane.com. This is a solid, instantly recognizable strap with a cool Cubist look, and it is not the usual sticky silicon. Science lesson coming at you. The original ISOfrane watch straps were manufactured from Isoprene. Isoprene is a liquid hydrocarbon that is obtained in the processing of petroleum and is used as a raw, chemical material. Isoprene was far more durable than normal rubber and maintains its shape while being anti-allergenic. The straps are non-toxic and add durability and softness to rubber without using the dust magnet silicon, and yes, it’s available in a #LEMONFRESH yellow. It’s a thicker, more sturdy alternative to a Tropic strap, especially for larger divers like the Seiko Marinemaster.

Image via Chrono24

Omega Speedmaster Reduced — the popping Michael Schumacher edition

With my irreverent taste, you might expect a quirky microbrand here, but yes, even I know my Speedies. So instead of buying something new, go for an underrated Speedmaster, the searingly bright yellow Michael Schumacher edition. It will not look like a Moonwatch, but for around €2,700-3,000 on Chrono24, this is a cool piece of history with a twist. I am a heretic, I know, but I find the 39mm case the most comfortable of the Speedies (sue me!). I’d still rather have a Moonwatch than a standard Reduced model, but this #LEMONFRESH version is a different beast altogether. It’s a great chronograph with excellent legibility and comfort, a smooth bracelet, and an extremely eye-catching dial. What’s not to love? Bright pops of red against yellow are balanced by the castellated white seconds track on the rehaut. It’s a piece of unusual Omega cool, so get one while they’re still affordable.


Image courtesy of Sneakernews.com

Nike Waffle One

Recently released, this medium-priced Nike Waffle One is a layered, cool choice with a happy flash of yellow. I’m an advocate of contrasts that make an outfit, so feel free to be a bit risqué for once. Try some slim turned-up chinos and a suit jacket with a smart shirt and this POP of color. Obviously, should the yellow Schumacher Speedy slip out of your cuff, your street cred-o-meter will rise to 10/10 on the style scale. Don’t be shy, embrace colors, and just adopt a little of that devil-may-care attitude that is the X-factor of everyone from Keanu Reeves to James Dean. These are around $100 from Nike, shared by Sneakernews.com here.

Did all this color in one article blind you, Fratelli, or did it inspire you to be a liiiitle bit more adventurous? I still shake my head when I see Instagram shots from a fellow watch geek with eight watches, all with steel bracelets and black dials except for one blue. Come on, people… Diversify!

Find me and follow me at @thorsvaboe