Time and again: Chanel celebrates 30 years as a horological auteur

Time and again: Chanel celebrates 30 years as a horological auteur

The launch of its latest Code Coco design marks three decades since Chanel embraced fine watchmaking traditions, fusing materials, engineering and craft to create a stylish horological universe all its own. Here, we explore the house’s key watch design moments

1987: Première 

The dial of the Première references the geometric architecture of the Place Vendôme. With no dial markers and a casual, boyish charm, it is a functional jewel for the wrist with a timelessly contemporary character.

‘Première’ watch, gold plated with a chain bracelet interlaced with leather, by CHANEL Watches. Photography: Chanel

2017: Code Coco

With its somewhat pixelated appearance, the belt-like ‘quilted’ bracelet of the Code Coco creates a futuristic look and an entirely contemporary design take. Code Coco is fitting testament to the new thinking that Chanel is bringing into 21st century watch design.

​‘CODE COCO’ watch in steel case, bracelet and bezel, with diamonds, by CHANEL Watches. Photography: Chanel

1987: Première

The dial of Chanel’s first watch design, dreamed up by the great Jacques Helleu, a long-term artistic director at the house, is notable for its cut glass dial shape. It was Helleu’s idea to mimic the emerald-cut N°5 bottle stopper, which in turn references the geometric architecture of the Place Vendôme. With no dial markers and a casual, boyish charm, it is a functional jewel for the wrist with a timelessly contemporary character.

Vendôme Place in Paris. Photography: Chanel

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