History of Innovation
Carl f. Bucherer pieces are near the top of many aficionados’ wish lists, due largely to the fact that, under their pretty faces, there are some of the most intriguing movements and complications to be found anywhere.
Perhaps not as recognisable as some of the world’s biggest watch brands, Carl F. Bucherer is, nonetheless, one of the most respected Haute Horlogerie companies in the business.
Relatively small, with around 160 employees, the brand’s pieces are near the top of many watch aficionados’ wish lists, due largely to the fact that, under their pretty faces, lay some of the most intriguing movements and complications to be found in any Swiss timepiece.
Based in lucerne, Switzerland, Carl F. Bucherer manufactures luxury men’s and women’s mechanical watches. Since its founding in 1888, the company has been wholly owned by the Bucherer family, making it one of the oldest luxury Swiss watchmakers continuously held by the founding family. The company is run by the third generation, with Jörg g. Bucherer serving as chairman of the board.
The watch models of Carl F. Bucherer are distinguished by their additional functions including the chronograph, flyback, tachymeter, and tourbillon, as well as indicators and displays such as big date and day, power reserve, 24 hours, moon phases, three Time Zones, calendar, and perpetual calendar.
“The appeal of the manufacture’s distinctive watches lies in their innovative technology, useful additional functions, progressive aesthetics and carefully selected materials,” the brand says.
“The independent-minded design, attention to detail and uncompromising quality make every Carl F. Bucherer watch an object of lifelong pleasure for the owner. Carl F. Bucherer watches are created for people who take control of their own lives, live at their own pace and enjoy every moment. They are intended for people with vision and who have a message of their own.”
The brand’s story began in 1888, when Carl Friedrich Bucherer opened a jewellery and watch shop in lucerne. His name rapidly became a synonym for quality and originality. His two sons were destined from the cradle to follow him into the profession: one learned to become a watchmaker while the other trained as a goldsmith.
Today, the combination of these two artistic skills is still reflected in the watches that the brand produces. The company now invests a lot in research and development, but Carl F. Bucherer has always been known as an innovative brand.
For example, in 1919, the brand launched the Art-Deco-inspired ladies’ watch collection, which was a revolutionary development. Carl Friedrich Bucherer was one of he first to focus on the wristwatch, still very much an innovation at the time. Whether set with jewels or presented in an octagonal case, these Art Deco watches were soon to conquer the world of ladies’ wristwatches.
Dazzling ladies’ watches were also a dominant feature of the 1920s. One masterpiece was a platinum watch with a case and brace- let set with 170 diamonds. During the 1930s, watches in unusual shapes became increasingly fashionable. The silver brooch watch in the form of a horse- drawn carriage was set with marcasite.
The door of the carriage opened to reveal the watch, which had its numeral 12 set at the bottom so that the time could be more easily read. Delicate ladies’ watches with leather straps also became legendary. The often- slender case was made of gold, and the dial was mostly decorated in typical contemporary style. The case too often had ornaments based very much on the Art Deco style.
In terms of men’s watches, sophisticated functions were much in demand in the 1930s: with its jumping hours display, which, unusually, is indicated via a disk, the Rolex Prince C. Bucherer’s became highly sought after. Yet even the classic pocket-watch was still contemporary: with a small-seconds dis- play and a champagne-colored dial, Bucherer showed that innovation and elegance were by no means mutually exclusive.
The 1950s and 1960s were, for Carl F. Bucherer, very much dominated by stylish men’s watches. Elegance and functionality were combined in the design of these time- pieces. With their symmetrically arranged counters, Bucherer chronographs were truly eye-catching. Often the dial was perfected with practical indications such as a tachym- eter scale.
Watches did more than simply show the time; they became a reflection of the personality of the wearer.