The Crystal Edge

Swarovski has come a long way since Daniel Swarovski invented the revolutionary crystal-cutting machine in 1892, and officially founded the company in 1895. Somewhere between then and now, there seemed to have been a “big bang” of Swarovski crystals exploding fast and furious into the world of luxury. From fashion and beauty to art and interior design to pop culture, anything that needed a touch of glamour and sparkle was given the Swarovski treatment. These days, its crystals are ubiquitously featured on jeans, sunglasses, compact cases, chandeliers, flip-flops, iPhone covers, handbags, Louboutin heels, JLo’s music video and even on your manicure. Everything can be Swarovski-ed!

But that’s hardly the end of the Swarovski crystal invasion. The crystal expert recently launched its Aura fragrances and a body and make-up line. And in 2009, even when the luxury sector was taking it slow and treading it gingerly in an uncertain economic climate, Swarovski proceeded to debut its watch collection. Three years and two collections later, the brand remains steadfast in its conviction to break into – and possibly make an impact on – the very exclusive and sometimes snobby haute horlogerie community with its third collection, which was showcased in Baselworld 2011. Here are three of our faves from Swarovski’s 2011 crop.

Royal Flair: Octea Chrono
Say hello to Swarovski’s first chronograph watch. Love the purple, one of the collection’s key colours, which brings out the brilliance of its clear-crystal rotating bezel. 40mm is a good size – sporty. Luminescent indices, a crystal-pavéd counter, and six Amethyst Diamond Touch Light crystals on the rubber strap are a nice touch. Oh, and it’s water resistant to 50m, too. But personally, I wouldn’t take it for a dip.

Material Girl: Octea Sport
From the same Octea family as the chrono comes this new take on the Octea Sport. It’s worth highlighting mainly because of the use of ceramic on its bezel. Those who know their watches would appreciate that ceramic is a popular material among established watchmakers that include Omega, Dior and Chanel. Kudos to Swarovski for its innovative application of its technical expertise in crystal faceting on ceramic.

Fashion Forward: D:Light Avant Time No 1 By Eric Giroud for Swarovski
If there’s just one watch Swarovski ought to be known for, this is it. D:Light is the gorgeous result of combining a futuristic, award-winning design (it won Red Dot’s Design Of The Year last year) and a unique movement that’s exclusive to Swarovski. From far, it looks unsuspectingly like a crystal-studded bracelet. With the push of a button, however, a number of crystals magically light up to display the time digitally. Three new versions in steel, gold PVD or rubber (colours available: white, black, red, orange or purple).



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