Olivia Burton’s Dress Watches Are Pretty, Affordable And Super Chic

Recently acquired by horology powerhouse Movado for £60m (S$108m), the six-year-old British watch brand Olivia Burton is winning women over with its distinctly pretty and affordable timepieces. Founders Jemma Fennings and Lesa Bennett tells us how they’re redefining the “dress watch”.

olivia burton Jemma Fennings (left) and Lesa Bennet

They Experiment Like Fashion Folks

“Experience (Bennett was a buyer for Asos, while Fennings was a buyer for Selfridges and Topshop) has allowed us to be really innovative. We’re not scared to push creative boundaries. We were the first fashion watch brand to put a 3-D motif inside a dial, and we pioneered moving motifs of miniature metallic bees inside glass cases with our Busy Bees series.”

Every Design Is Feminine And Sophisticated

“There was a real need for a beautiful and unique watch brand to enter the market when we started. The market was very much polarised by high-end luxury brands and low-end brands that lacked style. Women look for quality and beautiful design that will stand the test of time; something that’s going to work with their everyday look, while also making a statement.”

There's A Classic Yet Trendy British Edge

olivia burton Rustic blooms and nature are major inspirations, which extend to the interior decor of their London studio (above).

“We used to trawl antique markets and we’d come across really unusual vintage watches, but – given their age – they’d always start and stop. Our love for vintage and fashion is reflected heavily in our aesthetic. Florals and nature are a huge inspiration, and have become part of our signature style. All of our designs are brought to life at our studio in London – our in-house designers illustrate elements by hand, and the final artworks are created, then carefully printed onto the watch dials.”olivia burton


olivia burtonTheir Watches Are Meant To Be Worn Like Jewellery

“We wanted to cement a watch as a true fashion accessory, one that can be changed up (to match an) outfit, just like one would with a piece of jewellery. We release new collections (from $179 at selected retailers) every two months, which gives people a chance to regularly update their watch wardrobe. Previously, the market was dominated by classic masculine timepieces, and people were encouraged to invest in just one watch for a lifetime.”

Expect More Fashionable Creations

olivia burton The Case Cuffs are like ear cuffs that can be attached to a watch.

“As we evolve over the years, we’ve started to introduce edgier styles and upped our experimentation. For example, there’s the After Dark line (matte black dials and cases) and the Abstract Florals collection (dials screen-printed with modern illustrations). The Case Cuffs series that we launched in January is an exciting innovation – pop one on for extra impact, and pop it off when you want an understated look.”

olivia burton Wear pretty blooms like those seen in  Redoute. The Book of Flowers

olivia burton
The latest collection takes inspiration from Spring ’18’s embroidery and embellishment trends. (Left: Alexander Mcqueen, Erdem)

Catwalk Photos Showbit.com

This story first appeared in Female's February 2018 issue. 

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This article is originally published on Female Singapore.

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