Intimately bound up with Blancpain's identity, two emblematic red gold timepieces from the Villeret line - the Quantième Complet and the Ultraplate - are now available with blue dials.
In the wake of the First World War, Swiss watchmaking underwent a period of profound crisis, resulting in a State-led reorganisation of the sector. This rescue operation took the form of cartel agreements that remained in place until the 1960s. Part one: the 1920s and 1930s.
Chinese watch firms are investing in Switzerland with the likes of Ebohr, which has launched its first brand; Fiyta, which has taken over Montres Chouriet, and Sea-Gull which is taking a stake in a Swiss movement manufacturer. Their objective is to move upmarket and seduce Chinese customers with the lure of Swiss Made.
Unsurprisingly, my last "In the Air" on the Fine Watchmaking Manifesto sparked quite a reaction. As in all things meteorological, favourable and cross winds blew, though fortunately without serious turbulence. It's never a bad thing to let in some fresh air.
World Expo is not only a fabulous opportunity for the Chinese to apprehend the culture and techniques of each country; it is also a platform for exchange that puts the Chinese on an equal footing with the people of other nations.
The Fine Watchmaking Manifesto is soon to be published, after lengthy research and animated discussions. Mamma mia! But before we go any further, let us answer one question: why does Fine Watchmaking need a manifesto?
What has got collectors in a particular whirl is the recent announcement of the collaboration between Roger Smith and his former mentor, George Daniels. The two are creating a series of 35 Anniversary watches to commemorate Daniels’s invention of the Co-axial escapement.