Wrist Watching: A Bund-Strapped Patek Philippe Ref. 1518 Perpetual Calendar Chronograph On The Wrist Of Ed Sheeran
by Nick Gould
It is no secret that Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Ed Sheeran is watch collector with a collection that features many heavy-hitting modern timepieces from Patek Philippe and Richard Mille. These range from simple time-only pieces to tourbillons, split-seconds chronographs, grand complications, and much more.
His Instagram page, @teddysphotos, provides us with regular eye candy. In 2018, for example, when performing in Germany, a picture Sheeran posted showed him wearing an A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk, a timepiece usually only recognizable to a true watch lover.
His collection also features vintage pieces, and he been seen wearing iterations of Rolex’s Paul Newman Daytona on occasions.
I spotted Sheeran wearing a vintage piece in a picture posted on the Instagram page of his head security guard Kevin Myers, aka @securitykev.
The watch in question is a Patek Philippe, and not just any old watch from the traditional Genevan manufacture, but a Reference 1518 perpetual calendar chronograph.
The Reference 1518, which launched in 1941, was the first serially produced perpetual calendar chronograph. One notable owner of this reference was King Michael of Romania, who was rumored to have a mythical two-tone stainless steel/pink gold version of the timepiece, which was debunked when I found a color photograph showing the – now identified – yellow-and-pink-gold model on his wrist.
Another notable owner of the Patek Philippe Reference 1518 was King Farouk of Egypt, whose example you can see in Quite Possibly The Largest Curated Assembly Of Vintage Patek Philippe Watches For Sale In History At Christie’s New York.
Sheeran is rocking a yellow gold version in the photograph, though even more surprising than that is his choice of strap: not a simple leather example as one might have suspected, but a two-piece so-called bund strap.
This gives the watch a completely different look and the vintage-sized 35 mm case more wrist presence. Good to see Sheeran willing to experiment with a different style, which makes the 1518 look even more bad ass than we already know it is.
Quick Facts Patek Philippe Reference 1518 Perpetual Calendar Chronograph
Case: 35 mm, yellow gold
Movement: manually wound Caliber 13”’130 Q, 23 jewels, 2.5 Hz/18,000 vph frequency, column wheel chronograph
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds; perpetual calendar with day, date and month, 30-minute chronograph