9 watch stories from 2009

2009 started as a difficult year for everyone, but while established watch makers took the hits with dignity, younger brands where betting on their flexibility and agility to adapt to new economic realities. The Chinese ideograms for “crisis” is 危機, where 危 alone means “danger”, while 機 has also the meaning of “opportunity”. I’m looking forward to 2010, when we will probably witness the watch making industry harvesting the opportunities of 2009.

Anti-Counterfeiting Campaign at the SIHH

Anti-Counterfeiting Campaign at the SIHH

1. Anti-Counterfeiting Campaign at the SIHH: Fake Watches Are For Fake People!

The Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie and the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry has unveiled its anti-counterfeiting campaign at the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie 2009. more »

2. Smithsonian Uncovers Secret Message Inside Abraham Lincoln’s Watch

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History announced it has found a “secret” message engraved in President Abraham Lincoln’s watch by a watchmaker who was repairing it in 1861 when news of the attack on Fort Sumter reached Washington, D.C. more »

3. BASELWORLD 2009 boosts the global watch and jewellery industry

After eight successful days, BASELWORLD 2009 closed its doors, once again reaffirming its position as the leading international watch and jewelery trade show. On a site covering approximately 160,000 m2, 1,952 exhibitors from 45 countries showcased their latest products and innovations. Exhibitors and visitors alike spoke enthusiastically about their experience at the show and the business they did. Thanks to this sense of positi­vity, both exhibitors and visitors forecast new prospects for the industry as a whole. more »

de Grisogono Meccanico dG - Titanium and rubber

de Grisogono Meccanico dG - Titanium and rubber

4. de GRISOGONO Meccanico dG

In fine watchmaking, you can decide to reinterpret existing concepts or choose to steer a pioneering course. Founder and CEO of de Grisogono, Fawaz Gruosi has deliberately chosen the second approach. With the Meccanico dG, the Geneva based manufacturer’s most recent entry, de Grisogono presents a design stemming from the purest watchmaking tradition and projects it into the future. With a total of 651 components, the Meccanico dG’s mechanical movement is one of the most complex ever made. A masterpiece of fine watchmaking, designed to display the time in two time zones, it ranks as the world’s first watch with a mechanical digital display as well as an analogue face. This world first – based on a de Grisogono patent – places a startlingly complex mechanism in a very contemporary design. more »

5. Exclusive Breguet Patronage of the Louvre

Exclusive Montres Breguet SA patronage for the remodelling of the Conseil d’Etat rooms and salon Beauvais, known as the Louis XIV wing, at the Louvre museum as part of the renovation of the museum premises devoted to 18th century furnishings. more »

Greubel Forsey DT30° Vision Red gold case Silvered-gold dial

Greubel Forsey DT30° Vision Red gold case Silvered-gold dial

6. GREUBEL FORSEY Double Tourbillon 30°

The watchmaker-inventors Robert Greubel and Stephen Forsey, based in their atelier in La Chaux-de-Fonds, wished to surpass the accomplishments of existing movements by plunging deeper into the subject and inventing a Tourbillon which significantly improves the functioning of a wristwatch.

After four years of effort, they created a Tourbillon within a tourbillon, in such a way that this new complication permanently compensates the gravity-related errors of rate in all wristwatch positions. more »

7. JAQUET DROZ Rouge & Noir

True to its vanguard spirit, Jaquet Droz presents three flagship timepieces from Baselworld 09 – with a Numerus Clausus of 88 – that highlight the absolute black of the Grand Feu enamelled dial, the black matt of the rubber and the red gold of the case. more »

8. HUBLOT Unico Technical Specifications

The UNICO movement, a chronograph developed entirely by Hublot’s Research & Development department, is now in its “functional prototype” stage until the end of 2009. more »

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921

Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921

9. Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921 Wins Watch of the Year 2009 Prize

Just two years after being awarded the 2007 Watch of the Year Prize (for the Patrimony Contemporary Retrograde Date and Day model), Vacheron Constantin once again takes the top spot on the winner’s podium with the 2009 Watch of the Year Prize, this time for its ‘Historiques American 1921’ model. more »

What were the events that you think should have been included in this article? Please leave a comment and share with us your thoughts.

As a graphic designer, I'm fascinated by the crossroads between technology and aesthetics. Horology is one of these crafts, where art and engineering come together to produce mechanical wonders that grace the eye. WatchPaper was born from the desire to create an online tool where I can share my passion for watches.