Paraphrasing Magritte’s caption of his painting of a pipe, Czapek introduces the Quai des Bergues Sapphire Blue S standing out with its distinctive blue. With its ‘flinqué’ enamel dial, this elegant 38.5mm steel watch demonstrates Czapek’s openness to new artisanal techniques, to positive contamination by other industries and to collaborative creativity.
Part of the Quai des Bergues S collection, the sapphire blue iteration was unveiled in a prototype version at Baselworld 2019. This 38.5mm steel timepiece features a striking blue ‘flinqué’ enamel dial, a technique combining geometric patterns with enamelling.
The pattern used with the flinqué technique was so recognisable that it gave it its name. Nowadays any pattern can be used in a flinqué dial. Czapek had its partner Metalem recreate its own Ricochet® design – a motif inspired by the ripples of a stone skipped on a lake – on a stamping tool. Once the décor is stamped on a silver plate, an intense ‘moiré’ blue enamel is applied by another Czapek partner, Donzé Cadran. It is fired in a kiln to harden the enamel. The process is repeated several times until the right hue is achieved.
This sapphire-blue is not just another blue. It was created after months of research, countless iterations and following the advice of a panel of Czapek shareholders and collectors.
“The fashion industry and the world of watchmaking are getting closer”, says Xavier de Roquemaurel, Czapek CEO. Fashion is ever-changing while watchmaking fosters tradition and heritage. However, the concepts of trends and colours are now positively contaminating the watchmaking industry. Before ‘blue’ meant one ‘blue’, today there are many different and evolving hues.
“In the 2000s blue in men’s fashion was essentially a night blue, very dark, almost black. In the 2010s, we saw a new type of blue appearing on the Milan catwalks: the dark blue rule was broken and men were suddenly free to wear lighter hues. A tone of blue has a certain lifetime, and it was the right moment to look forward to the next one”, explains Xavier. “Our Sapphire Blue is our bet for tomorrow’s blue, it is our blue for the 2020s”.
It took a year to Czapek to develop this blue dial with its partner, the enamel dial specialist Donzé Cadran. The company tried to understand people’s feelings – represented by its shareholders and collectors, who always give valuable inputs. “During one of our creative Labs in 2017 a blue from the ’70s received very positive feedbacks” explains Xavier. “We decided to introduce some of its ‘electricity’ and intensity into a modern hue to create a new blue… After countless iterations, we ended with two hues: the 541 and the 573. The final one was initially the 541, but because creativity is not a straight line, we finally selected the 573!”
The Czapek Quai des Bergues Sapphire Blue S is powered by the hand-wound calibre SXH1, a proprietary movement boasting seven days of power reserve. A 100-piece limited edition, it will be available in Czapek’s boutique in Geneva, rue de la Corraterie 18, through the brand’s official retailers and on czapek.com from September 2019.
Czapek Sapphire Blue Technical Details
- Hours, Minutes & Seconds
- Small second at 7h30
- Power reserve indication with weekdays at 4h30
- Calibre SXH1: Haute Horlogerie proprietary mechanical hand-wound movement
- Power-reserve > 168 hours (7 days) on 2 barrel-springs
- Frequency: 3 Hz – 21,600 VpH
- Diameter: 32 mm – 14 lines ¼
- Height: 4.75 mm
- Finish: double open ratchets, sandblasted bridges, blue screws, bevelling, final anglage main
- Rhodium-plated steel hands
- Stainless steel case
- 38.5 mm diameter
- Curved Sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on the inside surface
- Sapphire crystal case back with anti-reflective treatment on the inside surface
- Water-resistance: 50 meters (5 atm)
- Mat Dark Blue Alligator strap with XO steel pin buckle