Watch Trends 2019
On-trend gemstone applications breathe new life into watch design
The latest watches at Baselworld and the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie Genève revealed trends set to inspire all those passionate about beautiful timepieces. The creative use of gemstones and innovative alternate materials is breathing new life into the segment, and blurring the lines between a masterly designed watch and an exquisite piece of jewelry.
Renewed interest in the cosmos, including star constellations and astrology, possibly driven by the desire to seek more profound meaning, is inspiring watch designers to depict STAR DROPS by setting tiny diamonds into dials to contrast with a night sky background. This process is deceptively simple using Swarovski’s new mini presettings, available – among others – in bright-as-diamonds Swarovski Zirconia or genuine white topaz.
Some designers are creating attractive watch/jewelry sets bound to attract buyers’ attention. MARQUISE & PEAR STONES are a source of inspiration as major brands display watches with fancy diamonds, a trend destined to influence the mass market. Colored marquise and pear shapes in Swarovski Zirconia and Topaz are now poised to inspire new designs.
The GEM CROWN is a brilliant way to integrate gemstones into watch design. Watchmakers are now creating crowns with diamonds, colored gemstones, enamel, and other intriguing materials, and experimenting with once-again favorite cabochons, available from Swarovski in a range of different gemstones or created stones. And for those seeking the exceptional, Swarovski works closely with customers to develop unique cuts, and even sources unique materials.
Designers are finding joy in the perennial FLOWER-CENTRIC, for romantic watches and abstract shapes on dials. Marquise & Pear stones interpret flower petals, while smaller gemstones are tracing and softening metal features on dials.
ABSTRACT FLOWERS are attracting the attention of those looking for something elegant and less traditional. Feathered effects and even butterfly wings can be created using layered materials, while designers combine mother-of-pearl with irregular gemstone paves in assorted colors and shapes.
The use of diamonds and gemstones in men’s watches was one of the most surprising trends at the most relevant tradeshows, along with SURPRISE DIALS, like Cartier's Révélation d’une Panthère, where the dial features an animated panther motif outlined in over 900 gold beads in a liquid suspension. The shifting silhouette alludes to the passage of time in tune with the wearer’s movement.
The RECTANGULAR SHAPE, now reinterpreted in modern, light-hearted ways, is a natural match for square gemstones like the Swarovski Zirconia and Swarovski Topaz in the classic Square Princess cut. More experimental square-shaped cuts are also inspiring designers to create models to stand out against the competition.
BLACK & BROWN tones are set to dominate jewelry and fashion, one of the reasons that the Rolex GMT-Master II attracted attention at Baselworld. This heritage piece in 18ct Everose gold features a two-color Cerachrom bezel with a newly developed brown ceramic. Future designs will capitalize on these statement colors, easily interpreted in Swarovski Genuine Smoky Quartz and Black Spinel, Swarovski Zirconia in Caramel or Swarovski Nano in Black.
SOFT SOPHISTICATED COLORS, like the new shades Swarovski Zirconia Fancy Morganite and Swarovski Topaz Peach are a natural choice for feminine watch models. Designers are combining white stones with splashes of rainbow colors on dials, like the soft blue, pink and yellow of Swarovski Genuine Sapphire.
Brands are also encouraged to ‘think pink’ as designers are now covering watches in MULTI–PINK gemstones stones – from rich dark tones to pastels, which can be sourced from the Swarovski Topaz and Sapphire collections, and from the diamond-like Swarovski Zirconia, which is available in various shades of pink.
The love affair with gemstones and beautiful watches is set to endure in the coming years. Gemstone applications will unleash a range of exciting design possibilities, and the beautiful timepieces that result may well be destined to become heritage pieces in their own right.