When Lilian Thibault met Frederic Lymet on separate trips to Asia back in 2016, little did they realize that it would awaken a mutual passion that would create one of the most forward thinking brands two years later. As watch enthusiasts, in addition to their shared concerns for the environment, the brand AWAKE was conceived as an ode to sustainability, good taste, and precision timekeeping.
Their first collection is named “Origins” and is currently available in five styles: Moon Black, Blue Reef, Green Witch, Wild Brown, and the newly released Silver Moon. Every timepiece is built with eco-responsibility in mind, from initial design to production.
The usual strap materials found in other watches make an appearance at AWAKE, including leather, mesh metal, and rubber. But one more strap material is poised to make a standout impression in the eyes of the eco-responsible wearer: the Phoenix strap.
Made from plastic waste collected around the Seas of South Asia and off the coast of Japan, it is turned into pellets, processed, and then stitched into nylon yarns that will make the structure of the strap. The entire recycling process is certified by the Global Recycled Standard.
As avid seamen, Lilian and Frederic researched the proper metal to be used to house the inner workings of the watch. Their choice stopped at recycled 316L steel, as this is the same type used in marine projects due to its high resistance to corrosion, especially at weld points. The material is anti-allergenic to human skin, and can be recycled over and over again.
The Solar Movement
Keeping in line its mission of eco-responsibility and quality timekeeping, AWAKE watches use a very interesting method to power its movement: solar energy. The entire surface is a solar cell that accumulates power from light and can accumulate up to six months of operation in the dark by simply wearing it in daylight for three hours. Due to its battery-less design, there is no harmful chemical waste returned to the environment, ever. The movement itself is made by a subsidiary of Seiko and assembled in Japan before being placed into every individual AWAKE watch.
The AWAKE project was launched as a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign and despite not having worn a watch for over 20 years, I felt the need to contribute to their mission. My meeting with one of their founders, Lilian, only solidified my decision to wear one of his as I discovered that the company’s ambitions stretched far beyond simply beautiful watchmaking.
The watch itself is a gorgeous piece, mine being a Green Witch. The emerald-like reflection of the dial complemented well with the minimalist hands and conveyed an impression of good taste and lasting quality. What’s more important is its message of repurposing excess plastic waste generated by overconsumption and under-recycling. In contributing to AWAKE’s growth, we can help it expand into other products that carry the same message of eco-responsibility.
It is my firm belief in their commitment to the environment that I recommend everyone to pay close attention to the AWAKE brand. More information can be found at the links below. Follow them!