Bellusso Jewelers Blog

Bellusso Jewelers Blog
2018-03-28

Easily one of the biggest watch trends spotted at Baselworld this year was the influence of car design and technology. Many brands unveiled watches that had some auto inspiration, whether it be a design detail or an outright auto partnership.

The love affair between cars and watches has been going on almost since the dawn of wristwatches and of automobiles back in the early 20th century. The synergies of precision timing, excellence and even high-tech materials and design make this a perfect match. While some watch brands offer designs that incorporate carbon fiber dials, rubber straps and bold racing colors, other brands form alliances with drivers, particular races and even racing teams — and then create watches in their honor.

Bulgari, for instance, has a relationship with luxury car brand Maserati. These two top-notch names have teamed up for a collaboration on watches that recently witnessed the unveiling of a Bulgari Octo jump-hour timepiece reflective of the automobile brand.

IWC has created a partnership with racing and with the world of vintage cars. The Swiss watch brand is a partner of Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 racing team, and driver Lewis Hamilton is an IWC brand ambassador. Because IWC has been a partner with Mercedes-AMG since 2004, when the auto brand got involved with F1 racing, IWC naturally signed on, as well. The two partner brands have a host of synergies, so as Mercedes-AMG celebrates its 50th anniversary, IWC is right there. The brand's newly released Ingenieur Chronograph Sport Edition “50th Anniversary of Mercedes-AMG" is a 44mm titanium watch with an in-house-made self-winding chronograph. Additionally, IWC is unveiling another new watch this month at GoodWood, where it is the official timing partner of the Members Meeting.

2018-03-26

We are pleased to partner with ATimelyPerspective.com, the most authoritative source for watch reviews and news, to bring even more in-depth content to our blog. This article first appeared there.

Corum Magical 47 Bubble Watch by Elisabetta Fantone.

Corum has long been affiliated with artists for its legendary timepieces. Even back in the mid 1950s when founder Rene Bannwart experimented with drilling holes into coins to create dials, and when his son Jean-Rene turned to watchmaking artists such as Vincent Calabrese for the famed Golden Bridge, this brand was on the cutting edge of blending art and watchmaking technology. Decades later, when the brand was owned by Severin Wunderman, the beloved Bubble was unveiled, and frequently incorporated artistic dials as statement makers. Recently, under today’s ownership, the brand has not only re-established is artistic Bubble, but also has brought it to new heights — turning to a host of artists for some of the most unusual dials on the market. One of them most recent unveilings is the Corum Bubble 47 Magic by Canadian artist Elisabetta Fantone.

First shown to the world at Art Basel Miami, the Corum Bubble 47 Magical with dial by Elisabetta Fantone is the second in an artistic collaboration with the artist, who has been highly commissioned by celebs, such as Muhammad Ali, Celine Dion and others for her artwork. The newest Corum Bubble 47 Magic watch transcends time and space with an astronaut on the dial in a decidedly “space odyssey” sort of recollection. The dark green background engulfs the face of the space-suited astronaut — eyes wide open — with neon orange swirling lights aglow around him. The watch has no hands and, instead, time is indicated via a blue circle that engulfs hour and minute markers.

Elisabetta Fantone suite sponsored by Corum, at the National Hotel takeover in Miami. (Photo: R. Naas)

For those familiar with Fantone’s work, the brass-based dial is especially “her” – with manipulated painting and distinctive facial features. The look is made inky black and recalls deep space thanks to the black PVD grade 5 titanium case and bezel, and integrated black rubber strap. The watch retails for $6,400.

Our impressions: Even if you are not into space, astronauts and sci-fi, you will have a hard time resisting this watch. It screams adventure, action and unrivaled pop-art. As mentioned, this new watch was unveiled at Art Basel Miami, where there was a National Hotel takeover by Fantone, whose works were displayed everywhere, from the hotel lobby to the bottom of the swimming pool. She even decorated an entire suite sponsored by Corum, wherein the painting of the watch dial was the dramatic backdrop on the wall behind the bed, and where her artwork was converted to wallpaper for the walls and fabric for the pillows and coverlet.

This is the second affiliation that Corum has entered into with Fantone. The first Bubble Magical 47 watch Fantone crated was decidedly different, with a modern interpretation of the classic Mona Lisa.

2018-03-22

The Baselworld Fair opened today, and already we are seeing key trends emerge, including an emphasize on interchangeable watch straps, the introduction of new materials and a general downsizing of case sizes for men and women.

Interchangeability and versatility. As witnessed already at SIHH, watch brands are recognizing that consumers today like choice. As such, we expect to see a lot more brands offering interchangeable watch straps — with new methods for easy-click changeability and with grand diversity of leathers, metal bracelets, finishes and colors.

Continued use of new materials. While gold, steel and titanium remain the staple of watchmaking, we continue to see an evolution of new materials. Our favorite is the use of bronze because it develops its own patina over time, making the watchcase unique to its owners. On the flip side is the innovative use of sapphire, with more sapphire box cases being unveiled at the high-end of the spectrum, allowing for ultimate visibility of the movement, and with some brands unveiling new colors of sapphire. Additionally, certain cutting-edge brands are unveiling new alloys and new colors of alloys that bring an edginess to the timepiece.

Smaller case sizes. While the much-loved 44mm size for men and 36mm size for women will never go away, this year we are seeing a reduction in case sizes. For women, these reductions mean a emergence of "mini" cases (24mm) from couture brands, as well as from fashion-forward brands, and of 32mm and 34mm sizes that sit nicely on a thinner wrist. For men, 38mm sizes in a classic watch are beginning to populate the offerings. For comparison's sake, a US quarter measures about 24mm.

2018-03-19

We are pleased to partner with ATimelyPerspective.com, the most authoritative source for watch reviews and news, to bring even more in-depth content to our blog. This article first appeared there.

SIHH 2018: Cartier Rotonde de’ Cartier Skeleton Mysterious Double Tourbillon, platinum.

Cartier has long been a leader in mysterious watches and clocks, and the Rotonde De Cartier Mysterious demonstrates the brand’s prowess in the haute horlogerie field yet again. In fact, the brand has been building mystery clocks since 1913 when the first such clock was unveiled. It was the result of a partnership between Louis Cartier and watchmaker Maurice Coüet, who was inspired by the clocks of the famous illusionist, Jean-Eugène Robert-Houdin.

Essentially, a mystery clock is one where the connection of the hands to the rest of the movement’s gear train are hidden, giving the visual effect of them floating in the center of a transparent dial, the mystery being ‘How the heck are those hands working?’ In fact, the hands of the mystery clock are not driven by the typical central canon pinion, but instead are fixed on two large sapphire disks that are driven by hidden text and gears. being placed on transparent sapphire discs and the discs are rotated on via teeth on the periphery of the dial by hidden gears. Not too long ago, in 2013, Cartier brought the concept of mystery to new heights, unveiling the Mysterious Double Tourbillon movement wherein the tourbillon appears to be suspended in mid-air. It was a revolutionary piece snd game-changing in terms of technology.

SIHH 2018: Cartier Rotonde de' Cartier Skeleton Mysterious Double Tourbillon is powered by the caliber 9465 MC, made in house.

Cartier Rotonde De Cartier Skeleton Mysterious Double Tourbillon

Now, Cartier unveils two new Mysterious watches that are guaranteed to have all eyes riveted on the wrist. The Rotonde De Cartier Skeleton Mysterious Double Tourbillon watch, powered by the original 286-part caliber 9465MC (as used in the 2013 watch), is set to strike a number of visual queues. The flying tourbillon sits on a sapphire disc driven by gears that are partially concealed by the familiar skeletonized bridges that double as radial roman numerals. The tourbillon rotates around the centrally mounted fixed wheel once every five minutes and around its own axis once every 60 seconds.

Crafted in platinum and measure 45mm in diameter, the Rotonde de Cartier Skeleton Mysterious Double Tourbillon watch carries the ‘’Poinçon de Genève’’ certification. It is finished with a blue alligator strap and created in a limited edition of 30 pieces. It is also available in platinum with bezel paved with baguette-cut diamonds. Without diamonds and as shown here, it retails for $216,000.

Cartier Rotonde de Cartier Mysterious Day and Night watch

SIHH 2018: Rotonde de Cartier Mysterious Day and Night watch.

The other impressive new piece is the Rotonde de Cartier Mysterious Day and Night watch. This is an all-new mystery complication for the brand. Measuring 40mm in diameter and, housed in an 18-karat pink gold case, the watch is powered by the Cartier Calibre 9982MC. The mechanical movement with manual winding offers a mysterious day and night indicator with a sun (or moon by night) with an extra long ray that acts as the hour hand. It also offers a retrograde minute hand on the bottom half of the dial. The movement consists of 174 parts and 26 jewels and beats at 28,800 vibrations per hour. Water reistan to 30 meters, the watch is also available in white gold. It retails for $63,000.

SIHH 2018: The Rotonde de Cartier Mysterious Day and Night is powered by the Caliber 9982 MC movement.

2018-03-14

The first few months of every year are filled with so many events in the watch world, starting in January with the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) exhibition in Geneva and then running into the biggest watch show of the year, Baselworld, in Basel, Switzerland. This year, the Baselworld Fair official opens on Thursday, March 22, with pre-show events taking place on the 21st. The show runs through March 27.

This show is important for many reasons. To begin with, this is where the majority of watch brands — from Patek Philippe to Rolex — unveil their newest timepieces, watches destined to set the wrist trends for the coming year. During Baselworld, thousands of new timepieces are shown, many of which will start to make their way to stores later this summer and fall. This is where the trends are set, this is where the new materials in watchmaking are unveiled and this is where brands, retailers and even customers congregate to get the newest info on time and timekeeping.

About 800 brands will exhibit at the show. This list includes big name brands, niche brands, dozens of top independent watch brands and even some top jewelry brands. Additionally, around the city of Basel, another 30 or so brands are showcasing their new timepieces for those adventurous enough to step outside the show's cavernous halls.

We anticipate that this year's Baselworld exhibition will bring us some great new trends and directions for the coming year, and will keep you posted with more news and information very soon.

2018-03-07

This upcoming weekend we are all going lose a bit of sleep. That’s because at 2 o'clock in the morning on Sunday, March 11, we set our clocks ahead by one hour for the start of Daylight Saving Time. The Spring-Ahead concept has roots dating back to the 18th century.

In 1784, Benjamin Franklin wrote an essay called “An Economical Project for Diminishing the Cost of Light.” He suggested that people should get out of bed earlier in the morning in spring and summer months to use the light instead of candles. No one knows for sure how many people advocated for Franklin's idea, but we do know that no formal action was put in place to bring the concept to reality for the next 130 years.

Many European countries implemented a Daylight Saving program as early as 1916 when Germany first started, but the USA lagged behind for decades. In fact, here in America, starting just after World War II, the government suggested Daylight Saving Time, but left the implementation of it to the individual states. Each could decide if they wanted to impose it and on which dates.

This caused such confusion about what time it was in different states that in 1966 Congress established the Uniform Time Act – setting the protocol for exact dates and times to start and stop Daylight Saving Time. As part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, the length of Daylight Saving Time in America was extended by four weeks, starting in 2007. Still, some U.S. states/territories don’t participate, and argue the usefulness of it.

Credits: Top image by BigStockPhoto.com; Old timepieces by The Watch Blog.