100 Years of Citizen Watches


Sean Lorentzen for A Blog to Watch

Citizen’s dedication to traditional forms of Japanese craftsmanship shines through brightest on the dial of the The Citizen AQ4100-65L. The dial surface is made from fibrous, detailed washi paper, a material used in traditional Japanese paper screens for hundreds of years. The variegated, web-like nature of this paper ensures that each individual dial is unique, as does the equally traditional pole-wrap shibori dying process.

It’s easy to write off Citizen as a “mall” brand, and you wouldn’t get a whole lot of pushback from me. By and large, they are known for affordable Eco-Drive watches you can find at nearly any department store. Lest we forget that Citizen is steeped in history and a fine representation of Japanese watchmaking. This release seems to take that history very seriously with its washi paper dial, perpetual calendar movement, and +5/-5 sec per year accuracy. That said, you’re going to pay for these finer details and Japanese craftsmanship this time around as the AQ4100-65L is limited to 600 pieces and priced north of $4k USD. A tough pill to swallow for many, I’m going to bet, as this limited edition watch is absent a mechanical movement and instead powered by their Eco-Drive technology.

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Jamie Larson