Following on from the 67th instalment of our regular series focusing on everything watch related, The Wind Up, we have some absolutely magnificent timepieces ripe for the taking! From an incredibly complex piece from one of the dark-horses of modern horology, to a super avant-garde watch depicting the passing of time in a very novel way, and everything in between, we’ve got it all in this week’s instalment. So as always guys, sit back, relax and enjoy!
Parmigiani Kalpa Tourbillon Galaxy
Okay, first thing’s first. This is not a man’s watch. Produced by one of the smoothest, most refined watchmakers the industry has ever known, the Kalpa Tourbillon Galaxy from Parmigiani is the quintessential female-horologist’s dream watch. There is a beautiful combination of unfathomable complexity, coupled with the gorgeous nature of set diamonds, and like the cherry a-top the proverbial cupcake, the galaxy-inspired dial is just about as amazing as a dial can be. The dynamic nature of the tourbillon dancing around the open window at 6 o’clock is very reminiscent of the planets endlessly travelling along their natural planes in space. Created for the female buyer, yes. But I can easily see it strapped to my wrist whilst wearing a sleek tuxedo. Now the question to ponder on is this, how generous do you feel?
Jaquet Droz Charming Bird
The Charming Bird from Jaquet Droz is a stunning example of modern automata within watchmaking. There is an ode to theatrics that I personally believe Jaquet Droz, amongst a very small few, have mastered. The movement of the singing bird is achieved by a punch of pistons and compressed air, activated by a pusher at 2 o’clock. There is an insane amount of engineering involved in making this happen, especially considering the fact that there is absolutely no digital intervention within the Charming Bird whatsoever. If you go to the website (the link is below), you can actually press in the 2 o’clock pusher and watch the awesomeness occur. The Charming Bird is more of a novelty piece than anything, less practical and more entertaining. But you have your iPhone for all that other stuff, right?
What does $995USD get you nowadays, strictly from a horological perspective? In terms of overall quality and longevity, not that much. But lo and behold, from out of the woodwork comes Bravur with the brand-new Scandinavia. Assembled in Sweden and featuring the Swiss made Sellita SW300-1 automatic movement, the Scandinavia is a tribute to Bravia’s heritage and minimalistic style culture. There’s a certain refreshing cleanliness about the Scandinavia that really appeals to me. It looks far more expensive than it really is, and this is of course a very good thing. The Scandinavia is available in three different colour variations: Jet Black, Sparkling White and Midnight Blue. Each has its own personality, each representing a different charismatic style. The Scandinavia is a well-made timepiece that’s both soundly built and very relevant to what the consumer looks for in an affordable watch.
Chronoswiss Sirius Retrograde Day
Chronoswiss is a fairly new watchmaking brand, founded in 1983 Gerd R. Lang. They’ve recently expanded to Australia, and with that they’ve brought a variety of pieces that I believe will open our budding market. The Sirius Retrograde Day is one of my favourite pieces from the Chronoswiss atelier. There is a beautiful balance of functionality, of good looks and of proportions that really elevates the appeal of the Sirius Retrograde Day. The big-date indicator at 12 o’clock is balanced well by the retrograde day indicator at 6 o’clock. The centre stack of hands are typical of the passing hours, minutes and seconds, and the applied hour markers are really the only touch, apart from the Chronoswiss insignia at 12 o’clock, on a very clean dial. The onion-shaped crown is a nice little touch, as are the elongated lugs. Impressive and different, just what I like.
HYT Skull 48.8
HYT produce some very distinctive timepieces, and as unique as their aesthetics are, so too are the mechanics powering these uber-cool watches. The latest piece from the HYT manufacturer is the Skull 48.8, a 48.8mm wide absolute beast of a watch made of titanium and featuring satin and sandblasted finishings. What lies beneath a very cool looking dial is some super complex mechanics that really do defy belief. There is a stark contrast between the confronting nature of the skull between the smooth ebb and flow of the fluid within the movement, and it’s one that I really do admire. The HYT Skull 48.8 is available in three different variations: one with a green skull, one with a red skull, and the other with a blue skull. Each piece is limited to 50-pieces, and each will cost $65,000USD when they get released in October.
Baume & Mercier Clifton Complete Calendar
Thoughtfully designed and well put together, the Clifton Complete Calendar is inspired by vintage designs of yesteryear. It features levels of legibility and balance unbeknown to many other timepieces with similar functions, albeit more expensive ones at that. The Clifton Complete Calendar features a clear calendar, with the date being indicator by the blue hand in the centre stack, the day and month in the two apertures between the Baume & Mercier insignia, and a moonphase situated just above the 6 o’clock hour numeral. You also have the passing hours, minutes and seconds, also indicated by the centre stack of hands. The twisted lugs are a nice little vintage touch, as is the super flush crown. Very impressive stuff.
If you enjoyed The Wind Up and would like to continue reading about watches, you can head on over to my blog, Haulogerie, where I delve a bit deeper into the wonderful world of watches.