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Blancpain - Fifty shades of Fifty Fathoms

Blancpain Fifty shades of Fifty Fathoms

For 15 months, the brand has been focusing its efforts on every variation of its diver's watch, the Fifty Fathoms. That's no reason to forget everything else they're capable of

A wind keeps blowing in watchmaking, and it carries with it a strong whiff of sportivity, of the dressier kind, and steel and titanium. It's fanning the flames of the sports chic segment, and for Blancpain that means the Fifty Fathoms.

As any decent collection, and a successful one at that, the Fifty is not one, but many. It's made up of several sub-collections, combined with colour variations and complications. It's a whole environment, which addresses several needs and uses, some urban, some actually sporty, most of them in between.

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Fifty Fathoms Automatique 5015 in titanium © Blancpain

For over a year, Blancpain has been activating every single box in the matrix that is the Fifty Fathoms catalog. The classic one, the modern one, the desert type, the diving type, the titanium kind, the chronograph type and even the all-gold version.

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Fathoms Bathyscaphe Day Date Desert Edition © Blancpain

This has given rise to models such as the Bathyscaphe Day Date Desert Edition, which easily moves from dry to wet sand. Or the Tribute to Fifty Fathoms No Rad, a throwback to the original model, which was one one of the very first proper diver's watches.

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Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe Mokarran © Blancpain

And the Bathyscaphe Mokarran, dedicated to the eponymous sea preservation ONG which Blancpain have a partnership with. The Bathyscaphe Blue Sedna, which will carry its weight around town (and I mean that litterally : 43 mm in diametre and 13.4 mm in thickness, and all of that is rose gold...). Fans of lighter pieces are in for a treat with the Fifty Fathoms Automatic 5015 and 5050, respectivemely a three-hander and a large date, entirely crafted out of titanium. And finally, Only Watch gets a one-off No Rad where every single marking is orange.

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Fifty Fathoms No Rad Eddition Unique Only Watch 2021 © Blancpain

On top of that, the brand has recently announced the Blancpain Female Fifty Fathoms Award, a ladies-only sea photography contest. Is it paving the way for a ladies Fifty ? The smallest size currently available is a 38 mm Bathyscaphe, which leaves room for a feminine makeover.

But if you were thinking of the dress Blancpains from the Villeret collection, you're going to have to look further back. For the past two years, they have been few and far between, and all of them have been relatively simple pieces, with small complications. Most of them belong to the category some name interchangeable. Let me explain. Some brands feel that these plain, dress watches with small complications and clean dials have little in the way of differenciation. They're having a hard time promoting them because they don't stand out. Blancpain, though, is still at it.

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Villeret Extraplate 6651 © Blancpain

Their leaf-shaped, openworked hands, their applied roman numerals, smaller but as curvaceous as ever, give them enough pizzaz, and that's before we mention the 3- and 4-days Blancpain calibers inside. This has brought forth the Villeret Extrathin and [[Complete Calendar]], both in red gold and blue dial. And on the wrist, these two are madly chic. Not sporty chic, the real chic : the classy one.

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Bathyscaphe Chronographe Flyback © Blancpain


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