23 Classic Watches to Wear on Your Wedding Day

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.
groom watch

Photo by Joel Serrato

A watch might not be the first item that comes to mind when you think about traditional wedding jewelry, but the right piece can really elevate a look. Surprisingly versatile and elegant, a classic watch will make any bride look put together and can easily turn into a wardrobe essential once the big day is over.

For grooms, watches are a bit more common and should always be considered when looking for the perfect accessory to go along with a tux. But instead of strapping on the leather watch you wear on a daily basis, or a smartwatch that also counts your steps, you might want to look for something more refined and classic.

Brides who are thinking of swapping a bracelet for a watch should go for something understated, especially if your gown features intricate beadwork. Jeweler Apeksha Kothari says, "I'd generally recommend a bracelet-style watch with a slim band. You want the dress to be the star of the show here, so best to go subtle." If you're wearing a solid-colored gown, you can opt for something more ornate. She adds, "The watch should complement, not overshadow the other elements of the look."

Meet the Expert

Apeksha Kothari is the COO of Rare Carat diamond marketplace and is part of the fifth generation of her family working in the diamond industry.

For grooms, picking a watch is a little easier. Kothari still recommends that grooms go subtle, saying, "For weddings, you want to stick with something classic and neutral. Tempting as it might be to show off that Rolex, we suggest leaving the bling at home in favor of brands like Shinola and Daniel Wellington."

No-fuss styles such as link, lather, and metal mesh straps are great choices.

When watch shopping, take your wedding theme into consideration as well, just as you would when looking for any other type of jewelry. For a beach wedding, go for something more casual; for a formal black-tie affair, Kothari suggests the groom wear a watch with a black face.

You'll also want to match your watch to the metal type of your ring. "A silver watch with a rose gold wedding ring would look a little odd, for example," Kothari says. "Same applies to the cufflinks and men's wedding band. You want your metals to match, otherwise, it's a distraction." You could also your watch as a sentimental piece of jewelry—the perfect "something borrowed!"

Need some suggestions? Here's a look at some perfect classic watches for your big day.

For the Classic Groom: Daniel Wellington Classic St. Mawes Watch

watch with white face and brown leather strap
Courtesy of Daniel Wellington.

This sophisticated timepiece has a minimalist look to it which means it will go with almost any style. The leather band is also interchangeable if you want to eventually switch it up.

Price at time of publish: $239

Best Rose Gold Watch: Shinola The Birdy 34MM

thin rose gold metal band watch with white face
Courtesy of Shinola.

The thin rose gold band on this watch is delicate and feminine and would match perfectly with a rose gold ring. The mother-of-pearl face gives it a little extra glimmer.

Price at time of publish: $675

For a Beach Wedding: Daniel Wellington Iconic Motion

black watch with black face
Courtesy of Daniel Wellington.

This functional all-black watch is just the right amount of luxe and casual for a groom to wear to a beach wedding. The touches of gold add a little something special.

Price at time of publish: $299

Best Touch of Sparkle: Vacheron Constantin Overseas Self-Winding

watch with diamonds on the face and leather straps
Courtesy of Vacheron Constantin.

With a leather band, steel case, 18K pink gold bezel set, and 84 small round-cut diamonds, this watch is both elegant and refined. It adds just a touch of subtle sparkle to any look.

Most Unique: Bulgari Serpenti Tubogas Watch

serpent shaped watch that is gold and silver
Courtesy of Bulgari.

If understated isn't your thing, opt for this serpent-shaped watch that will definitely make a statement. The face is full of brilliant-cut diamonds for sparkle, and the two-tone band gives it a unique look.

Price at time of publish: $26,600

For "Something Blue:" Shinola The Pee-Wee Detrola 25MM

blue watch with thin band
Courtesy of Shinola.

Make your watch your "something blue" with this simple but stand-out Shinola watch. It has a thin band and a smaller face, so it won't take too much attention away from the rest of the look.

Price at time of publish: $325

Best for Black-Tie Grooms: Daniel Wellington Classic St. Mawes Watch

brown leather band with black face watch
Courtesy of Daniel Wellington.

Opt for the St. Mawes watch with a black face for a black-tie wedding, as per Kothari's advice. It's elegant and sophisticated, and just simple enough.

Most Sparkly Choice: Piaget Treasures Watch

sparkly bedazzled watch
Courtesy of Piaget.

If you're wearing a solid-colored dress, add some sparkle to your look with this dazzling Piaget watch. The floral design makes it even more beautiful.

For the Traditional Groom: Shinola The Vinton 38MM

stainless steel watch
Courtesy of Shinola.

The simple, no-frills design of this stainless steel Shinola piece makes it ideal for the traditional groom who wants to wear something classic. It will go with nearly anything.

Price at time of publish: $695

Best Leather Band: Tiffany & Co Atlas 1-Hand 24MM Watch

black leather band with a white face and small diamonds
Courtesy of Tiffany & Co.

With its black leather band and the small diamonds dotting the face, this watch is the perfect mix of sparkle and simplicity. It adds just a little extra glitz.

Price at time of publish: $5,600

Best Gold Watch: Bulova Sutton Watch

gold watch
Courtesy of Bulova.

To match a gold ring or band, there's this sturdy all-gold Bulova pick. It's a classic choice, with small diamonds studding the face for something special.

Price at time of publish: $495

Best Splurge: Cartier Ballon Bleu de Cartier Watch

sparkling Cartier watch
Courtesy of Cartier.

If you're looking to splurge on a wedding day watch, this Cartier choice is an excellent pick. It's made up of white gold and 127 brilliant-cut diamonds for tons of sparkle.

Best Platinum Watch: Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Minute Repeater Ultra Thin

leather band and platinum set
Vacheron Constantin.

For something subtle but still unique, this one is a great choice. With the platinum set and ultra-thin leather band, it's versatile and classic

For the Modern Bride: Bulova Futuro

yellow and white gold watch with mother of pearl face
Courtesy of Bulova.

This band features a mix of stainless steel and yellow gold for a more modern look. The mother-of-pearl face with 11 small diamonds makes it more elegant.

Best Square Shape: Tiffany 1837 Maker 27MM Square Watch

black leather band with square face
Courtesy of Tiffany & Co.

Instead of a round watch, opt for a square shape, which is a little more unique. This one features a leather band and gold accents for a timeless look.

Most Casual: Gucci G-Timeless Watch

gold gucci watch with bee in the center
Courtesy of Gucci.

This gold watch manages to feel both dressed up and casual at the same time. The mother-of-pearl face features the Gucci bee in the center.

Price at time of publish: $1,500

Best Touch of Blue: Bulgari Serpenti Watch

white gold watch with blue numbers on the face
Courtesy of Bulgari.

If you want your watch to be your something blue, but you don't actually want a blue watch, this is the one you want to go for. The blue numbers are subtle but fun, and the white gold and diamond band make this elegant.

Price at time of publish: $46,800

For the Casual Groom: The Canfield Chrono 43MM

brown leather band and white face
Courtesy of Shinola.

For the groom who wants something simple, there's this design. With its brown leather band and gold touches, it's versatile and can be worn well beyond the wedding.

Price at time of publish: $950

For the Understated Bride: Daniel Wellington Petite Pressed Sterling

sterling silver watch
Courtesy of Daniel Wellington.

Delicate and simple, yet still beautiful, this Daniel Wellington sterling silver design is perfect for your big day. It's also versatile enough to be worn every day.

Price at time of publish: $199

Best Mother-of-Pearl Design: Shinola The Canfield 38MM

black leather band and mother of pearl face
Courtesy of Shinola.

This mother-of-pearl face stands out because of the simplicity of the rest of the watch. The face is gorgeous and looks just right with the black leather band and gold touches

Best Sparkle for Grooms: Piaget Altiplano Watch

blue leather band with a diamond face
Courtesy of Piaget.

For grooms who want to add some sparkle to their look, there's this Piaget watch. The dial set features 630 brilliant-cut diamonds that make this one really glitter.

Best Thin Band: Movado Bold Bangle Watch

thin rose gold band
Courtesy of Movado.

This watch features a thin and very simple band and face and comes in rose gold, gold, or silver. The sunray dial with mother-of-pearl overlay is unique and so pretty.

Price at time of publish: $495

Most Simple: Daniel Wellington Classic Sheffield

black leather band and white and gold face
Courtesy of Daniel Wellington.

Simple, elegant, and ideal for anyone, this watch features a black leather thin band, white face, and gold accents. The versatility makes it a great buy.

Price at time of publish: $239

  • Should you match your watch to your wedding ring?

    It's recommended to match the metal in your watch to the metal of your engagement ring or wedding bands. So, if your ring is rose gold, try wearing a rose gold watch.

  • Is it appropriate for a bride to wear a watch on the wedding day?

    A watch is an elegant and versatile alternative to a bracelet and is appropriate for a bride or a groom.

  • Should you match your watch to your gown or tux?

    Opt for a watch that complements your overall look rather than one that matches exactly or stands out too much.

more in

The Ultimate Guide to Groom's Fashion

Related Stories