Best of the Best 2012: Men’s Watches: Conceptual Innovation: Hermès Le Temps Suspendu

At first glance, the unusual function of Le Temps Suspendu ($19,400 for the steel version shown), which is capable of stopping time on command, might seem less than practical. Such a concern, however, presented no stumbling block to Jean-Marc Wiederrecht, the master watchmaker who completed the movement for Hermès. Wiederrecht was charmed by the concept of a watch complication that encourages the wearer to take time for himself. (A simple push of a button returns one to the exact time.) Though the movement’s originality relies more on imagination than mechanics, it nevertheless marks mechanical watchmaking’s first attempt to remind us that time is a resource too easily squandered. In this respect, Hermès’s newest complication may indeed be more practical than not. (800.441.4488, www.hermes.com)

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