Today, with the flood of social media, superficial design language is popular, only to compete for public attention and commercial traffic. A good design that is truly high-quality and can stand the test of time needs to maintain a calm mind, not be moved by short-term interests, stick to the original intention, endure loneliness, and wait for the flowers to bloom. There are many swiss watch men brands that boast good designs, but everyone knows that there are very few excellent designs between square inches, and the ones that can truly be called classic works are even rarer. Most of the time, “design” only exists as a propaganda vehicle, allowing mediocre products to sell at higher prices.
At the moment when the commercial value of “design” is prominent, in addition to the master Gerald Genta, who is known for designing Patek Philippe Nautilus and Audemas Piguet Royal Oak, rare watch designers have a higher public Reputation. No matter how many new models are released every year or how hot a certain product is sold, designers are often just ordinary employees in the brand design department that are not well-known.
In other words, watch design is relatively simple, only need to uphold tradition and a little innovation; unlike the fashion industry, the watch industry only has star products, and does not need star designers.
For the high-end watch field with relatively traditional and conservative design, it can indeed be regarded as a certain innovation and breakthrough.
Time travels back to more than 20 years ago (in my vague memory, probably in 1998), the Rado Cerex series used a similar design language (asymmetry and deformation), but it is obviously better than the above. A few crooked handles are more profound.
Ceramics with different shades of color represent day and night, which symbolizes the cycle of time, simple and timeless.
Cyrex is an epoch-making watch work, a representative of the earlier integration of industrial design and time art into the high-end watchmaking industry. Rado has once again demonstrated its pioneering spirit of innovation and self-breakthrough to the world. However, this product has not achieved real commercial success on a global scale, except for its acceptable sales in the Japanese market. When I joined Rado China in 2006, there was still a small amount of stock waiting to be processed in the market. At the listing event that year, Kwan Zhilin, who was wearing Cyrex watches from the spiral staircase of Jin Mao Tower, walked down the stairs, and the charming Guan Zhilin was no longer active in the public eye. The beauty is not old, but the good times can never go back.
Cyrex’s sales are not ideal, obviously related to the design. Radar ranked first in the Chinese market that year, with absolute advantages in brand awareness and sales channels. The reason for the poor sales may be that the design of this watch is too advanced, or the public still can’t appreciate this kind of watch with a strong design style.
In the case of conflicts between design styles and popular tastes, how to make trade-offs and trade-offs is a huge challenge for brand management. Because even a seemingly flat and wide road may hide many unpredictable unknowns ahead. In fact, most brand managers, just like our ordinary people, lack the strong will to walk to the end. What’s more, good design takes time to convince the audience, and you can’t create a classic in a flash.
Whether it is the Cyrex of cheap Rado or the special-shaped new models of the above brands, they all have a strong design style, and the internal motivation for design can be seen. As a daily accessory, I feel a little too hard. Just like on a lazy beach, you have to wear a solemn and formal dark evening dress. Although it reflects the high-level and elegant style, there is always a kind of out of place.
Overall ceramic series (Ceramica)
The overall ceramics can be called a work of God, and it is the best testimony of the golden age of the bursting of innovative capabilities of radar watches in the early 1990s.
The Ceramica monolithic ceramic series launched in 1990 follows the minimalist style that best Rado has always upheld, and this style has also become an important part of the design concept of Rado. The watch is characterized by its minimalist design: the case and the strap of the same width are seamlessly connected, and they are natural, just like a bracelet; they are made of the same material and shimmer with the same black light.
The overall ceramic series has also achieved great commercial success. It has been popular in the market for nearly 20 years and has influenced the product design styles of other consumer categories, such as Apple iPod and later iPhone.
Jaspe Morrison X monolithic ceramics
The cooperation between Jasper and Rado started in 2007. The first watch of the cooperation was launched the following year. The design style of ceramics is also a soft spot.
Before the official launch of r5.5, I was looking forward to the products Jasper would design for Radar, but when I first saw the product samples, I was a little disappointed. I didn’t have the bold and unimaginable design, but it was calm and ordinary in appearance. Of ordinary products. Compared with the overall ceramics, it only narrows the width of the strap, and changes the four right angles of the case to a rounded arc. But only a few weeks later, my attitude changed completely, and the r5.5 became my most frequently worn radar watch.
The Rado r5.5 series launched in 2009 was designed and created by the famous British designer Jasper Morrison. The design reveals Jasper’s typical design style: the perfect fusion of minimalist aesthetics and oriental Zen.
The name r5.5 is derived from the 5.5 mm rounded radius of the case. This watch follows the style of the early RADO watch models. The cleverly integrated ceramic case and tapered strap are reinterpreted in the r5.5 model. The minimalist style and the appearance design without losing the sense of the industrial era, the contrasting and exquisite details are reminiscent of the early monochrome models of RADO. The design of the watch combines the inherent hardness and warmth of high-tech ceramics, abandoning the sharp and cold straight lines, and using soft corners to set off the delicate and comfortable ceramics.
Jasper respects the silent design aesthetics, so that you will not always have a sense of “design” when you wear it, and everyone who has worn ceramic watches has a common experience. The biggest advantage of ceramics is not hard and wear-resistant, but Comfort that other materials can’t match. Therefore, r5.5 is a commuter watch that can be used with formal wear for work or weekend trips. It is unique, but its personality is not public, and the comfortable and calm beauty of wearing it is unforgettable. In Jasper’s other works, you can often see this highly recognizable 5.5mm radius arc corner.
Good design can stand the test of time. Similarly, good design also needs time to be recognized and accepted by the market. Like many other designs of Jasper, r5.5 is not the kind of work that makes people fall in love at first sight. The charming temperament and unique charm of “Super Normal” needs time to digest and identify. Once the love starts slowly, you will love more and more, and love for a long time. However, the radar at that time was facing the adjustment of brand strategy and the transformation to the young consumer market. As r5.5 did not bring huge performance in the short term, the Swiss management lacked enough patience and courage to continue to support this series.
The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak designed by Zunda did not immediately succeed; although it is difficult to find a list at the moment, who would have thought that the Chinese general agent would clear the goods at the price of the property 10 years ago. The price increase of Patek Philippe Nautilus is only a matter of recent years, but in today’s information overload, where do all the people remember these old events? We only focus on the immediate results, and selectively ignore the process by which a good design is discovered. In recent years, countless brands have almost blatantly copied the highly recognizable “Zunda Design”, and the truly original and good designs are either rare or submerged in a sea of explosions.
Whether it’s a square in a circle or a square in a circle, the integration of tough square lines into the overall appearance of the circle, or the Royal Oak plus a few screws, can make traditional and elegant watches show youthful and sporty modernity. style.