Article By: Logan Hannen

What is up, watchfam?! Today, we’re going to be taking a look at one of my personal favorite case shapes – the cushion case.

At their core, a cushion case watch is essentially a square watch with the corners rounded off. There isn’t much more to the definition than that, really, but they have remained a fixture in the common consciousness of the watchfam for some time now, so let’s take a look at a couple of the most iconic cushion case watches, and why they’ve managed to secure such staying power.

#1: Panerai Radiomir

PAM 604
Source: Time & Tide

When it comes to cushion case watches, there really is no more synonymous a watch brand than Panerai, and no more classic a model than the Radiomir. While I cannot confirm whether or not the Radiomir is the original cushion case watch, it is definitely the OG. With a history dating back to 1936 and designed for the Frogmen of the Italian Navy, it’s a design with heritage, and a track record of being big, ultra-masculine, and still somehow incredibly refined at the same time.

#2: Patek Philippe 5940 Perpetual Calendar

Patek Philippe 5940g
Source: Monochrome

Only in the world of cushion cases can we go right from Panerai to Patek Philippe in a logical fashion, but here we are. This Patek has long been one of my favorites because of just how funky it is, with it’s stunning white gold case, Breguet numerals, and obviously the perpetual calendar complication. That being said, coming in at only 37mm in diameter, this cushion case is definitely a more elegant kind of piece than the hulking 44mm of the Radiomir. Still incredibly attractive, though.

#3: Laurent Ferrier Galet Square

Laurent Ferrier Galet Square in Steel
Source: HODINKEE

From Patek Philippe, the only truly logical place to go is the world of high end independent brands, and there are few better, more refined examples of this than Laurent Ferrier. The Galet Square is 41mm by 41mm, as the term “square” would imply, making it a relatively moderate sized piece and, given the need for some decent lug-to-lug dimensions to give it a decent bit of wrist presence. In design, it’s teetering on completely minimalist, the only real indulgence being a sub-seconds dial instead of a second hand at center. It’s subjectively beautiful, but objectively brilliant.

Alright geeks, so hopefully now you have not only a bit of a working definition of what a cushion case is, but also some pretty marvelous examples in a few different categories to keep in mind and, hopefully, to keep it classy, watchfam.