Baselworld 2016: Color my time
On this, the first day of spring, it would seem logical to make way for colors to announce the return of the flowers, in lieu of a return of growth….
Once again, this year, black, white and silver are unabashedly dividing up the dial market. Nevertheless, anthracite, blue, and even some brighter colors like prune, green, yellow, or even orange for that matter, are slowly carving out a little space for themselves to give an otherwise drab market a bit of vigor.
Obviously, the celebration of color being conducted by the watchmakers is mainly being done to attract women, who, we know, are especially sensitive to the hue of their time-giving jewelry. In order to seduce them, the company Cuervo y Sobrinos launched the Historiador Tierra, Sol y Mar collections. The three models (top picture) are in bold, strong and festive colors that draw their inspiration from the colors of Havana and the great islands of the Pacific. The three references come in 40-millimeter cases and are driven by automatically wound calibers CYS 5157 (SW260-1). They feature a sunny dial in yellow, orange and lagoon blue respectively. These beautiful watches naturally come on Louisiana alligator straps and adapted colors.
But Cuervo & Sobrinos was not the only company to go with color this year. Dior, with its now famous Dior VIII, is also joining in with the strong-hue crowd by offering very distinct colors on its automatic version of the black Dior VIII Grand Bal Cancan Céramique. In these conditions, the feathers on the dial are tinted in a very dynamic set of unique colors, which gives them volume while maintaining the lightness, a necessity for a jewel. When it comes to depth of field though, one watch that is worth noting is the sapphire version of the New Retro Baguette made by de Grisogono. The galuchat bracelet, in a special hue, gives the impression of extending the jewelry character of the watch all the way to the bracelet, because each little dentine bump on the ray’s skin is made more transparent by a raspberry tint.
So statistically, it should be very capable of drawing the attention of enthusiasts seeking to draw the attention of other enthusiasts. It may be no surprise then, that for men, many companies these days are producing a large number of time pieces featuring a blue dial as part of their set collections. Most are sports watches. And among those is Blancpain's brand new Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe. This superb divers’ watch is actually fashionable for two reasons. Not only does it have a blue dial, a very popular color for the past three years now in the industry, but it also features a ceramic case in a plasma-grey, which is bound to become a trendy color.
Having said that, blue, which touched virtually every brand in Hall 1, also reached some of the creations presented by the brands exhibiting at the Palace. There was the Rue Royale GMT, for instance, made by Pequinet, one among several. Of course, because materials are no longer a real obstacle when it comes to creativity, some of the companies in the avant-garde of the watchmaking craft have engaged in some very daring projects involving color. It’s the case of Rado, which this year is presenting the Rado True. For this particular piece, the brand -- the first to ever use ceramic for cases -- chose the color green, a hue which is indeed appearing subtly here and there. Furthermore, Rado has not only delivered a dial in that color that is the favorite of the Irish, but it also comes in a case of pure green ceramic. Achieving that result undoubtedly required intense research into pigments that could be used effectively in ceramics.