There’s a high chance you never considered buying a Swedish watch before. Allow us to change that for you. When it comes to choosing a wristwatch, most people gravitate towards the big well known watchmaking countries, Switzerland, Germany, and Japan, and that’s the obvious safe option.
But we all know that just because something is famous, it doesn’t mean there aren’t other very good options out there. Sometimes, the opposite may actually apply.
It’s easy for everybody to follow the trend of the biggest watchmakers in the industry, because it’s the easy way. But with lesser known brands, that’s not always true.
Since they aren’t bound by the rules and design trends big watchmakers create, they do their own thing and follow their own path, creating fresh, original timepieces that have a greater appeal than what established watch brands create.
That’s how Swedish independent watchmakers have come to create some very interesting alternatives to what the established watch brands usually offer.
And when it comes to design, you can’t deny the absolute beauty present in most Scandinavian creations. This is why we’ve decided to take a closer look at some of the best Swedish watch brands you should know about.
15. VERK Watches
Though not a watchmaker per se, VERK does offer some interesting timepieces among their homeware, furniture, and architecture, and they’re all an expression of the Scandinavian minimalism some of us love so much.
Underneath the very clean and simplistic dial, VERK watches feature a Swiss Ronda 7 movement, which, paired with the German manufacture, makes for an overall pleasant and functional experience. Their watch collection encompasses two lines, the ETT (Swedish for one), and the TVÅ (Swedish for two), both displaying the Scandinavian elegance you’d expect.
14. South Lane
South Lane brought to life some bold, industrial designs with their watch collection. Their pieces adhere to the same Scandinavian simplicity but they go a little further by using only monochrome and earthy color schemes to make their watches stand out.
South Lane isn’t about haute horlogerie as it is about fashion. Their watches employ quartz movements, which keeps prices extremely accessible, ranging from $20 to around $350. For straps, they only use premium Italian leather, matching them with the overall design of the watch.
One very interesting fact about South Lane watches is they’re all unique. The company uses hand-scratching to give that cool industrial aesthetic to their dials, which ensures each one of their watches is individually scratched, and therefore, unique.
13. Miró Watches
Drawing inspiration from the art works of Spanish painter and sculptor Joan Miró and the dress watches of the 1940s, 1950s, and the 1960s, the Swedish brand Miró Watches brings back the elegance and vintage appeal of those years and combines it with a contemporary playfulness.
The result is a superb lineup of timepieces with clean and simple yet elegant designs.
There are no unnecessary parts, no embellishments, and no clutter, only simple stick indices and minute tracks, slender hands, and pleasant colors. Miró watches are unpretentious, and they’re made to be worn anywhere by anybody.
12. Maen Watches
Maen is a Swedish watchmaker based in Stockholm. They use Swiss made movements inside all their watches, whether mechanical or quartz, and an impressive attention to detail and finesse goes into making everything. Maen Watches is all about quality over quantity and that can be easily seen in all their collections.
Despite the elegant look and feel and the exceptional quality, MAEN watches are reasonably priced, ranging between $200 and $850, which makes them highly cherished by those looking for alternatives to expensive watchmakers.
11. Knut Gadd
A family run watch brand based in Stockholm, Knut Gadd began its watch manufacture in 1916, crafting vintage timepieces inspired by past members of the Gadd family.
Sophistication is another characteristic of the Knut Gadd watch lineup, yet they keep their price tags low enough to make them accessible to almost anyone. Most of their offerings are priced around the $200 mark. To keep their prices hovering around that range, their timepieces use quartz movements only.
Knut Gadd features both men and women collections, with some of the most interesting being the men’s Cult Chrono and Decagon, and the women’s Hexagon.
10. Epoch Stockholm
Founders and former owners of Sjöö Sandström, Mikael Sandström and Christer Sjöö, decided to shift their efforts from making expensive timepieces – the Sjöö Sandström watches often came in the $3,000 to $8,000 price range – to making high quality watches at more affordable prices.
This is how Epoch Stockholm was born, a brand that’s now offering timepieces in the $600 to $3,000 range.
Focusing on the more affordable segment of the watch industry, Epoch Stockholm employs Swiss movements to keep their watches ticking. The team assembles the pieces in their own workshop outside the city, with solid craftsmanship, great attention to detail, and a high level of quality.
Since the company does much of the work in their in-house workshop, they have greater control over all the manufacturing processes, something which reflects in the quality of their watches.
Swedish watch brand BOOM strays away from the traditional idea of watch manufacturing in the sense that it allows you to build your own watch. The brand has created an interactive system that lets each client choose his or her own parts and assemble them to their heart’s content.
BOOM watches come with separate dial, case, bezel, and straps, from which you can customize the look you want. They can also be changed later, should you decide to give your timepiece a different look. This way you can actually build a collection of watches by getting only the parts you need instead of buying several complete watches.
BOOM may not be high horology, but it’s definitely a very fun and rewarding concept. All their timepieces come with quartz movements, and the designs are quite fashionable too.
Swedish micro watch brand Tusenö is a young player in the industry, having started its journey only in 2015. Even so, they’ve managed to achieve quite a following, since their superb timepieces don’t exceed a few hundred dollars while making them as high quality as possible.
Part of their manufacturing process is happening in Gothenburg, Sweden, and they plan to move more of the production inside the country in the coming years. They also switched to making all their watches entirely mechanical since 2020, so their focus shifts more and more on premium, yet affordable timepieces, thus offering great value for the money.
TRIWA is an interesting brand. Its name comes from “TRansforming the Industry of WAtches“, which is their motto. They way they do it is by combining fun and unique designs with conscious use of materials. Their Time for Oceans collection for example utilizes 100% recycled ocean plastic in their watches.
The TRIWA X Humanium Metal Collection is using only metal that comes from illegal arms seizures around the world.
Through their watches, TRIWA hopes to raise awareness of various global issues that plague our society. Also, the excellent craftsmanship combined with accessible pricing makes for a great way to attract interested customers.
6. Sjöö Sandström
Founded in 1986 by Mikael Sandström and Christer Sjöö, Sjöö Sandström has made itself a very good image as a mid tier luxury watch brand. The watchmaker crafts its pieces entirely in-house in their Stockholm workshop.
Despite the fact that the founders sold the brand to open EPOCH Stockholm, Sjöö Sandström continues the tradition, which started with the very first wristwatch created in Sweden. The company is small-scale, which helps keep the focus on exceptional craftsmanship, attention to detail, and traditional design.
Prestigious, classic looking and built to last, their timepieces include dress, pilot, and dive watches. One of their most impressive is the Sjöö Sandström UTC Skydiver, which was created at the request of the Swedish Air Force, who was in need of a new chronograph for their fighter pilots.
Larsson & Jennings isn’t one hundred percent Swedish. It’s a Swedish and British fusion brand that manufactures its timepieces in Switzerland. The brand was born in 2012 and focused on fashion watches, creating beautiful designs with clean dials and slim cases, in a great variety of colorways.
Despite being only a decade old, Larsson & Jennings has already achieved some popularity. Its watches are complimentary to the jewelry and sunglasses that the company offers as well.
Though fashion centric, Larsson & Jennings watches adhere to the Scandinavian minimalism, which is probably one of the big selling points for them.
4. Halda Watch Co
The oldest of the Swedish watchmakers, Halda Watch Co was founded in 1887 by Henning Hammarlund and still goes on today, following the same principles that the founder instilled in the company, a characteristic that kept them alive for so long. Thus, they never make compromises in their watchmaking process, always striving to use progressive thinking in their designs and employ only highly skilled artisans to work on their creations.
The company introduced a modern approach for their timepieces. They construct them with modularity in mind, employing interchangeable modules, so that the user can swap between digital and mechanical dials, depending on his or her needs.
Halda Watch Co has several collections, and among them there are some very specific timepieces used by athletes, Formula 1 pilots, and even astronauts, all of them individuals with a high need for perfection. Despite being a micro brand, Halda’s focus on time keeping perfection and premium craftsmanship has them selling timepieces that are priced above the $8,000 mark.
3. GoS Watches
GoS Watches is a Swedish brand that started as a partnership between master bladesmith Johan Gustafsson and master watchmaker Patrik Sjögren, which is also where it got its name, as GoS stands for Gustafsson & Sjögren. The brand began with the interesting idea of using hand forged Damascus steel in the making of watch cases and even some of their dials, creating a very unique aesthetic.
Thanks to that, GoS watches are very special, but that also translates into their pricing, which exceeds the $10,000 mark. On the other hand, GoS Watches is one of the best watch brands in Sweden, and their pieces are premium, exclusive, and the manufacturing process involves the utmost attention to detail and extremely high levels of craftsmanship.
The design of GoS watches has very distinct Scandinavian influences, with inspiration coming from the Sweden’s incredible nature and rich history.
2. Bravur Watches
Another independent watchmaker from Sweden, Bravur Watches is focusing on offering high quality automatic timepieces that are manufactured completely in-house. They also strive to use locally sourced parts, apart from the mechanical movements, which come from Swiss manufacturers to ensure their desired quality.
Bravur watches are available to order only, which ensures an even better control over the manufacturing process and the final quality of the timepiece.
Their style is a combination of retro aesthetics, Scandinavian simplicity, and clean, elegant lines. Though they describe themselves as a luxury watch brand, their timepieces are often found in the $1,000 to $2,000 price range.
1. TID Watches
Born in 2012, TID Watches is a young brand, but one that managed to set itself apart by finding their own look, a combination of contemporary design and the minimalism that characterizes most Scandinavian creations. They are simple, yet incredibly bold in their aesthetic, somehow managing to add an emotional layer on top of the physical one.
TID watches (Tid is Swedish for time) are built to be on your wrist day after day, with a high durability ensured by the use of premium materials. Due to their distinct but simple look, they can be worn both on formal and casual occasions, and given the fact that the price range is somewhere between $100 and $200, it makes them extremely accessible to everyone.
Somehow, Swedish watch brands manage to create some very intriguing designs, inspired by their minimalist culture, often adding warm touches that create an emotional connection with their timepieces.
Though not very well known, they may serve as an interesting and bold alternative to more established brands on the global watch market.