Perri Dash has lived many lives. “I’ve never been afraid to reinvent myself,” the 35-year-old Dash tells me from his home in New Jersey. “I’m constantly growing and maturing.” The proof is in his resumé. Once a supply chain manager for David Yurman, he started an event collective (after a stint working for Pharrell’s brand, Billionaire Boys Club) that led him to the art world, where he began collecting and curating shows on his own. “I worked with a lot of pioneering artists,” he says. “I gave Mr. Star City his first show.”
After taking a break to start a family, he found himself in retail. “I was still afforded the opportunity to run a business without having to chase people down for a check, which was really nice,” he laughs. Now he moonlights as one of the hosts of Wrist Check Pod. A podcast with a video component – Dash hosts it with his good friends Rashawn Smith and Ben Grullon (full disclosure, I was a guest and am a fan) – Dash started it because he saw a gap in the watch world. “The idea when we first started was kind of like watch reviews meets Joe Budden podcast,” he says. “Even the setup was super intentional because we didn’t see anything like that in the space, and we didn’t see anyone like us in the space. And so I thought having a visual representation was really important.”
One thing Dash has always been, however, is a collector. From baseball cards to Pogs to music to denim, he’s always been part of the chase. His father had watches, an old Citizen in particular. But Dash didn’t catch the bug until he started working for Billionaire Boys Club, back when streetwear was really taking off. “I was like, ‘Pharrell has a G-Shock, I’ve got to get a G-Shock.'”
“I’m big on collecting what you like,” Dash says. “So for me, it starts with aesthetics – I have to have to be attracted to it. There has to be something about the design that resonates with me and there has to be something that gives you some kind of emotional response. And then I get into the history which is really important to me because that’s where you discover the why.”
Let’s get into the why with four of his watches and one piece of art.
Vintage Tudor Oysterdate ref. 7962
This watch, an Oysterdate from the ’60s, was a bit of an obsession for Dash. “At this time I was collecting vintage clothing pretty heavily and a friend I used to source goods from had a friend who was selling vintage watches. This came across my feed and he was selling it, and I was looking at this watch every day online, like ‘oh man, should I get it?’ And my wife was making fun of me for looking at it all the time. What’s great is that she actually went ahead and got it for me that Christmas.”
Dash is particularly charmed by the rose logo on this model. “I was familiar with Tudor, but I didn’t really know about the brand using the rose emblem. This was totally different from anything I’d ever seen from them. And that got me deeper into the history and understanding the significance between the logo and the inspiration behind it with the Royal family – the Tudors. I just fell in love with this piece.”
Vintage Elgin Skin Diver
This Elgin Skin Diver from the ’70s features a Gruen movement and is Dash’s current favorite watch (a status occasionally usurped by his Speedmaster). He saw it online and knew he had to have it. “It’s beat-up and scratched up. Whoever owned this thing really put it through its paces. It was like seeing a well-worn pair of jeans – I was like, I gotta have that piece.” Dash knew Elgin primarily for its cocktail and dress watches and was really intrigued by this sportier piece. He describes it as a “strap monster” and switches between a few different-colored NATOs regularly.
While Dash loves the aged tritium lume and the red date window, the other woman in his life – his five-year-old daughter – is less of a fan. “She says, ‘Daddy it looks broken.'”
Rolex Oyster Perpetual 41mm Green Dial ref. 124300
Before we get into how Dash got this watch and why he loves it, we have to note that he was, until very recently, a big critic of Rolex. “I just didn’t see them as a brand that was as innovative today as they were in the past. I think part of that was how much people obsessed over the brand and just the state of affairs right now. Here’s this watch company that makes more watches than anyone. And it’s still incredibly difficult for anyone to get. But at the same time, it seems like everyone in New York City has a Rolex.” Fair enough.
But this particular watch managed to change his mind. He loves the watch itself, but it was the watch in the green box that really sold him. “When you see it in the box, the presentation is kind of wild, to open it up and it’s like this green box with this steel sports watch with the same green in the middle, it felt like an art piece. The pearl in the oyster.”
Adding another layer of meaning to the watch is how Dash came to own it. Right after his 35th birthday, Dash received a text from Grullon with a photo of the watch. Dash knew what he had to do. He called on Grullon and Smith. “When you buy a Rolex from an AD there’s a selling ceremony, and it was really nice to do it with two of my friends. So I sat down, they sat in front of me, the box was opened, and then Rashaun looks at me and he says, ‘I don’t know what we made, but we made something.’ And it was a really touching moment.”
Omega MoonSwatch Mars ref. SO33R100
In his entire collecting life, Dash had never waited in line for a new release. And then came the Moonswatch. He and a bunch of friends queued up at 4:00 AM and still came up empty-handed. Dash chalked it up to a fun experience and went about his life. One day his wife was on her way to work and saw folks lining up at the Swatch store. “She calls me and she’s like ‘I think they have them.'” But an employee came out to announce that they didn’t have any Moonswatches.
Mrs. Dash went in to see when they might have a re-stock and a woman told her to come back at 11:00 AM. “So she comes back at 11:00 AM and she runs up to the woman, she says, ‘Hey, you told me to come back.’ The woman says, ‘which one do you want?’ She tells her and the woman goes to the back and comes out with a Swatch bag. Inside is a Moonswatch.” Dash went back a few days later because his wife got him the Mars but she wanted the Jupiter. He returned the favor.
Limited Edition ‘Sun Ra’ Poster By Ross Murray
A gift from his mother-in-law, this limited edition poster by artist Ross Murray hangs in Dash’s living room. It’s the perfect combination of his interest in art and his fascination with jazz visionary Sun Ra. “I saw this film at BAM in Brooklyn and I became obsessed with him. I started buying every single record. I bought his books. He has a book of poetry that is amazing. And everything he does is mystical and mythological. I think he’s just an amazing figure.”
Dash’s home is filled with art and collectibles, but this piece serves as a reminder of how he wants to live. “I always go back back to his music and his literature for inspiration. Because I’m constantly growing and evolving and maturing, be it creatively or as a friend, as a parent, as a partner. So it just motivates me.”
Shop this story
The Hodinkee Shop is an authorized retailer of Omega and Swatch watches, and carries a variety of vintage and pre-owned Tudor and Rolex.