Seiko has unveiled a limited-edition iteration of its vintage-inspired timepiece, the King Seiko. The King Seiko SJE095 features a textured dial adorned with a uniquely Japanese motif—a geometric pattern known as kiku tsunagi-mon inspired by the chrysanthemum flower. Save for the patterned dial, the limited edition maintains the compact case profile found in the King Seiko SJE089 and SJE091 was earlier this year.
While the latest King Seiko models have a notably streamlined case, the stylistic resemblance to the original from 1965 bordered on being a vintage remake. Fortunately, Seiko has decided to create a standout iteration (albeit a limited edition) that, as is often the case with Seiko and Grand Seiko, pays homage to Japanese culture in the dial decoration.
The highlight is the intricate geometric pattern on the dial. Besides evoking traditional Japanese cut-glassware, the engraving possesses a degree of elegance, while upholding a sense of balance in the dial. The balance could have been improved if the date window were absent, allowing the engraving to run uninterrupted across the dial.
This limited edition carries a price of US$3,400, just US$100 more than the standard King Seiko. The small difference makes this a no-brainer over the regular production model, though it can be argued this is somewhat pricey in absolute terms for a mid-range Seiko model.
Rooted in tradition
This limited edition draws substantial inspiration from the chrysanthemum flower, which not only serves as the country’s national flower but also as the emblem of the Japanese Imperial family. This textured dial is inspired by the kiku tsunagi-mon geometric pattern that is often found on edo-kiriko, a form of traditional Japanese cut glassware.
Apart from the elaborate dial pattern, the watch design incorporates several elements from the current models. Notably, the case features identical faceted lugs, and the dial showcases matching applied indices with a crosshatched hour marker at 12. The case dimensions remain consistent, measuring 38.6 mm in diameter and 10.7 mm high.
Likewise, the limited edition is still powered by the in-house cal. 6L35. A thin automatic movement, it operates at a higher frequency of 4 Hz and offers a power reserve of 45 hours.
Key facts and price
King Seiko “Chrysanthemum”
Diameter: 38.6 m
Height: 10.7 mm
Material: Stainless steel
Water resistance: 50 m
Movement: Cal. 6L35
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds and date
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 45 hours
Strap: Matching bracelet with additional leather strap
Limited edition: 600 pieces
Availability: At Seiko boutiques and select retailers starting on October 2023
For more information, visit seikowatches.com.
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