Designed for men and women and speaking the same design language, they usually only differ in sizes of their bodies and, when necessary, the movements that power them in order to maintain the same basic proportions. The 2012 Maurice Lacroix Les Classiques Tradition collection was follows this philosophy to the “t”.
With its mirror-polished body, guilloched dial, and a set of finely-cut diamonds, the 2012 TAG Heuer Link Lady (ref. WAT1414.BA0954) could have been a serious competitor to the gorgeous Omega DeVille Ladymatic (4220.127.116.11.63.001), if only it wasn’t powered by a simple quartz movement instead of a high-grade automatic caliber. On the other hand (no pun intended), the watch is still a good contender for the right to be chosen by those ladies who don’t care about the movement and other technicalities and simply look for a beautiful trinket that also tells time.
Unveiled during the Baselworld 2012 trade show, the hand-wound Cartier Tank Folle (ref. WJ306017) is a reincarnation of the (almost) legendary Cartier Crash from the late 1960s. Clearly influenced by Salvador Dali’s “liquid” clocks, the original watch was a morbid homage to one of Cartier of London senior managers who died (actually, was incinerated alive) in a car crash. His wristwatch was deformed by fire to a degree of melting and some other member of staff happened to be crazy enough to take the destroyed timekeeper as a source of inspiration. Now, eat your heart out, Stephen King.
Presented in a slightly oversized (though almost impeccably proportionate) stainless steel body, the automatic Louis Erard Excellence Ladies Chronograph (ref. 82 234 SE 01) not only has its razor-thin bezel set with dozens of finely cut diamonds: It is also animated by a rare Swiss made caliber. The ultra-compact self-winding movement was designed by ETA to be used exclusively in watches designed with the better half of humanity in mind. In fact, the new timekeeper is one of the most elegant “ladies” chronographs set to be revealed at this year’s Baselworld show.
The quartz-powered Tissot T-Race Danica Patrick Limited Edition 2012 (ref. T048.217.27.016.00) chronograph is, as you have probably already guessed, named after Ms. Danica Sue Patrick, a well-known American auto racing driver that also happens to be a model, Tissot’s “brand ambassador,” and the only woman to win in the famous IndyCar Series. Being a limited edition model, the timekeeper will be offered in a total lot of 4999 pieces.
A great fan of the Bauhaus approach to industrial design, I always liked the beautiful simple layout of the Swiss Railway Clock and its numerous more compact reincarnations currently sold by the Swiss watchmaker Mondaine. Thanks to the people from the U.S.-based WatchCo.com online retailer, I finally have the pleasure to review one of the recent additions to the growing family: the simple, yet elegant Mondaine Classic Big Date (Ref. A669.30008.11SBO).
Valentine’s Day will be here in less than five weeks and we’d better get the gifts ready. Or else. Like many other watchmakers and jewelers, Chopard is ready to capitalize on the upcoming craze by offering a special Valentine’s Day version of its bestselling Happy Sport collection. The Chopard Happy Heart Valentine’s Day Edition (Ref. 278475-3044) sports a polished stainless steel case, features three finely cut diamonds, but -somewhat disappointingly- is animated by a simple quartz movement.
The French fashion and jewelry brand has finally updated its Timeless line with a new, larger-than-life version. Sporting an impressively massive oval case 50 mm x 35 mm in dimensions and a hand-engraved dial with its deep blue color, the Van Cleef & Arpels Timeless XL (ref. VCARN9VB00) may not look as entertaining as their other collections featuring retrograde indicators and thoroughly executed “romantic” scenes, but it still leaves a strong impression on an unsuspecting mind.