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We all are familiar with countless exceptional watches made by the Swiss and Japanese that are dominating the market. Nonetheless, the French also displayed excellence in the fine art of watchmaking with the creation of many beautifully decorated haute horlogerie pieces and complex movements. While YEMA may not be a name that the masses are entirely familiar with, it is a brand synonymous with the production of fine French-made timepieces and an incredibly rich heritage.
Created by Henry Louis Belmont, a graduate from the National Watchmaking School of Besancon, YEMA was founded in 1948 and has been producing fine quality watches since. Along with some household names in the field of watchmaking, YEMA has concentrated on producing mostly emblematic and mechanical timepieces, including sports divers for pilots, racing drivers and underwater divers. Its repertoire includes reviving the YEMA Superman, commonly touted as France's legendary dive watch.
|Yema Urban Field Blue 37.5mm - Bracelet
Introduced in 1963, the Superman took the dive watch community by storm with its outstanding 300m water-resistance and idiosyncratic bezel-lock device. In the seventies, Yema went on to produced some of the most recognisable chronographs in the world. Word has it that Yema chronographs are often spotted gracing the wrist of Mario Andretti, a highly decorated racing driver with the Indianapolis 500, the Daytona 500 and the Formula One World Championship under his belt. He had even crossed the finishing line to claim the champion trophy at the Indy 500 race in 1969 with a Yema Rallye chronograph strapped on.
Also, Yema’s aviation theme watches - the Flygraf chronographs are crafted in close collaboration with pilot watch enthusiasts and professional pilots to reach the greatest heights in the watch industry. And to cover all of the sports prospects, Yema recently crafted its steel field watch segment with the Yema Wristmaster Adventurers series. In 2023, Yema continues the trend and went on to introduced this on-going Yema Urban Field Gold.
|Inspired by the ultra-readable dials of military-style field watches
Right off the bat, the 316L stainless steel case of the YEMA Urban Field stands out straight away for its symettrical field watch shape, a distinct appearance offering a visually intriguing style compared to the usual rounded construction. YEMA certainly knows all the right formulas to craft one enthusiast-driven vintage-looking mechanical masterpiece, with a case diameter of 37.5mm, a lug to lug distance of 48mm and a case thickness of 7.8mm, you can expect the watch to look incredibly wearable on the wrist, exhibiting a sporty yet vintage appeal.
Accompanied with a no-crownguard design, the wartime simplicity of a field watch is beautifully brought to the foreground with a high mirror-polish finish throughout the case. The vintage look is further enhanced with a 20mm military-style stainless steel bracelet adopted by the British Army until the early 1980s. It wears and resizes pretty much like a NATO strap. It has an original adjustment system involving a L-shaped buckle hook that inserts into the space between the links, allowing you to finely adjust its size.
The large blue dial opening of the YEMA Urban Field captures a gorgeous utilitarian appearance with a military-inspired, ultra-readable dial in sandblasted finish ensures uniqueness and elegance. Inspired by the ultra-readable dials of military-style Field watches, the Urban Field minimalist, no-date dial features a rugged sandblasted finish in contrast with the classy Dauphine hands in polished finish. In line with the tool watch design language, both the hands and the dial outer rim minute markers are treated with Super-LumiNova BGW9 Grade A so as to ensure increased readability in the dark.
The Urban Field brings together many elements of a classic and adventurous watch, it's been designed to be worn with everyday wear as well as with a suit. At first glance, it might look like a classic watch, but on closer inspection, and especially depending on the strap chosen, it quickly turns into a military-style adventurer watch.
|Mechanical Swiss caliber Sellita SW210-1b
Flipping over The YEMA Urban Field is powered by the Sellita's SW210-1b mechanisms. This hand-wound movement is proposed in its upgraded Elaboré and decorated finish with blue screws and Geneva stripes. Renowned for its precision and reliability, this Swiss caliber features hours, minutes and seconds functions and a mechanical winding mechanism precisely regulated at a daily rate of +/- 7 seconds. Equipped with a screw-in sapphire caseback allows the perfect view of this beautiful Swiss caliber while maintaining a water resistant of 100m/330 feet.
Overall, the Urban Field brings together many elements of a classic and adventurous watch, it's been designed to be worn with everyday wear as well as with a suit. At first glance, it might look like a classic watch, but on closer inspection, and especially on the bracelet, it quickly turns into a military-style adventurer watch. YEMA has been producing some really outstanding watches from their iconic Superman to various stunning collaboration models, however this latest release has impressed us once again, proving time and time again how amazing the French are at making such phenomenal timepieces.