Schwarz Etienne Adds Glorious New Women's Watches To Its Ever-Expanding Collections
Schwarz Etienne is a fully-integrated independent manufacture based in La Chaux-de-Fonds. The brand has made a name for itself with uniquely styled, sometimes edgy timepieces with a flawless finish, and is now introducing a ladies collection. Launching this year is the evocatively-named Fiji line, meeting the growing demand from women who are passionate about fine mechanical watchmaking. Read on to find out more.
Schwarz Etienne first demonstrated its fine watchmaking craftsmanship with the Tourbillon Petite Seconde Rétrograde (see here for details). The rising manufacture then went on to boldly assert its originality and reputation for being serious but not "too serious" with the UFO-shaped Roswell 08, that can be rediscovered here. The brand's refreshing, playful approach has breathed fresh, new life into traditional watchmaking.
Fine watchmaking for women
The La Chaux-de-Fonds based brand's Fiji collection is decidedly feminine and oozes quality craftsmanship. Schwarz Etienne has superbly risen to the occasion of creating a unique watch that's not simply a feminine version of the men's model, while adding an offbeat edge that the Maison is known for.
The Fiji collection has two new models (one in white gold, the other in rose) that are powered by the automatic ASE 200 calibre featuring an elegant micro-rotor adorned with the brand's logo. The watches are crafted in the finest watchmaking tradition with 3-bridge architecture, fine guilloché work and sunburst finish radiating out from the balance-cock. Enthusiasts of fine mechanical engineering will be delighted with this new timepiece, especially with its impressive 86 hours of power reserve. Schwarz Etienne uses modular calibres, opening the door to the addition of future complications. The brand has imbued even more creativity to this feminine line: the Fiji's 38mm case is assembled in three separate parts: case-middle, bezel and lugs, creating endless possibilities of material and color combinations. The curved watch case and grooved channels lend the watch another touch of natural elegance.
Fine details and a delicate animated floral display
The watchs' dials display a refined, sophisticated and original design characteristic of the Schwarz Etienne style, with a feminine twist. The central motif is so finely worked that it can only be seen at certain angles of light. The Fiji watches reveal their beauty gradually and with discretion... like a woman of taste. The watch is available in rose gold with a salmon pink dial and white gold with a matte black dial. Silvered applique hour markers in a graceful drop-shape and large Arabic numerals add to the unique elegance of the dials. The full beauty of the floral motif is seen in the animated small seconds at 6 o'clock. The hand remains still, while the seconds tick like the beats of a heart via a two-tone disc that rotates beneath an openwork floral motif. The hypnitoc effect is powerful in the black dial version, where the grey provides a strong contrast, while in the salmon model the blue makes a more subtle statement. It's simply a matter of taste, or personality... each model has an equal share of admirers.
Surprises-a-plenty from Schwarz Etienne
The environmentally-conscious Schwarz Etienne brand always presents its timepieces in gift boxes that have a whimsical tounge-in-cheek style, yet are supremely practical. A flying saucer was the box for the Roswell-08, a lightbulb held the Ode to Spring... and now a grey grained leather handbag is the presentation "box" for the new Fiji collection. The lucky owners will also receive a second strap for each model: the black dial version comes with a black grained leather strap and a ruby red version; while the salmon model comes with a pale blue and an elegant dark brown strap. Very well positioned at CHF 7,150 (vat. excluded), it will allow ladies to own original fine mechanical timepieces.
Schwarz Etienne thus enters the world of ladies' watches with its usual temerity, placing the emphasis on feminine delicacy and finesse while offering a truly fine example of classical watchmaking. A masterstroke!
(Photography by Pierre Vogel)