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Newsletter - Decoding trends

Newsletter Decoding trends

Our expert contributors analyse trends as diverse as high-frequency movements and minuscule ladies’ watches and we provide a first overview of what’s new in this year’s Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève.

“We do not follow trends,” Luc Perramond, CEO of La Montre Hermès, told our correspondent Marie de Pimodan Bugnon. The quote appears in Marie’s feature on an assortment of tiny new ladies’ watches she discovered at BaselWorld this year. In this respect, indeed, Hermès seems to be setting trends rather than following them. Even more significant, however, is the brand’s reintroduction of silver in its timepiece collection. For the next couple of years, Hermès has exclusive use of a new silver alloy that has been developed to eradicate the problems of patination that led the brand to discontinue use of the metal over 15 years ago. Keith Strandberg’s article has the full story.

My initial discussions with the bosses of brands that have scooped the Aiguille d’Or, the top prize at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (the annual Geneva watchmaking awards), suggest that the Grand Prix is not necessarily seen as a barometer for trends, but that winning the Aiguille d’Or brings numerous tangible and intangible benefits. We will be publishing these interviews over the next few weeks, starting next week with a first exclusive video interview with Stéphane Linder, CEO of TAG Heuer. But as an appetiser Brice LeChevalier presents the new features of the 2014 edition and renowned designer Philippe Starck shares his experiences of being a member of the jury for last year’s awards.

Continuing the theme of trends, David Chokron asked whether the quest for ever-higher frequencies might have passed its peak. He also cast his expert eye over two apparently similar skeleton movements from Cartier, revealing their subtle differences in a detailed photographic cross-examination. My interview with Vincent Perriard, CEO of HYT, the “hydro-mechanical horologists”, concludes the week’s coverage, explaining the company’s rapid expansion and revealing some of the exciting developments he has in the pipeline.

This week: more trends, more insightful interviews and not one but two Longines Conquest Classic chronographs – the official watch of the Roland Garros tennis tournament - up for grabs in our June competition.

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Brands

Cartier

Characterised by audacity and inventiveness, Cartier’s watchmaking history reflects a unique state of mind: “jeweller of kings and king of jewellers”. Its renown is bound up in the tradition of...

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Hermès

“La Montre Hermès” has adopted an epicurean philosophy that values the creation of sober, contemporary timepieces.

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HYT

The Hydro Mechanical Horologists at HYT have realised an impossible dream: combining mechanics and fluids in a wristwatch.

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Longines

Today Longines is the oldest brand still in business, unchanged, in the international registers held by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The firm has a long tradition,...

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TAG Heuer

Over 150 years of watchmaking savoir-faire and technical innovation have made TAG Heuer a global reference in avant-garde sports watches. As it tracked the rise of sports demanding increasingly...

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