anOrdain x Windup Watch Shop:

The Model 1 Precious Metal Series

Jul 28, 2021

Presenting a brand new iteration of our seminal watch - the Model 1 Precious Metal Series. In collaboration with Windup Watch Shop, an online watch boutique founded by Worn & Wound, the dials of the Model 1 Precious Metal Series offer the more subtle design features of our first watch space to breathe upon the dial.

The Model 1 Precious Metal in White Gold, finished with thermally blued hands

When the first lockdown of 2020 hit, enamel production at anOrdain halted for the first time in two years.

Making a watch without enamel wasn’t something we’d done before but, unwilling to stop creating, we began racking our brains about how best to proceed.

Testing metal finishes

With a team comprising of typographers, silversmiths, jewellers, watchmakers and people from an array of design principles, we knew we would be able to explore other creative avenues.

The idea of creating a watch using precious metal had always appealed to us. But, due to the ever-increasing demand for our enamel watches, we had simply never found the time. The pause in production afforded us the perfect opportunity.

Working with one of Europe’s leading dial makers in Germany, we experimented with various precious metals and techniques such as milling, polishing and galvanic dipping to develop a miniature series of our first watch, the Model 1.

We were careful to ensure any new iteration of the Model 1 maintained a distinctly anOrdain aesthetic, transferring the numeral and hand design from the enamel version onto the metallic dials.

However, when restrictions eased and we fired up the kilns once more, the project fell by the wayside in our rush to return to production.

Then, in early 2021, a conversation with Windup Watch Shop, the online watch boutique founded by Worn & Wound, brought the project back to life.

Assembling the Precious Metal dials

anOrdain x Windup Watch Shop

Keen to collaborate, the team at Windup Watch Shop were intrigued by the idea of an enamel-less anOrdain timepiece: one that, in a pursuit that matched our original intent, would showcase the quieter design features of our watches, such as the typography.

“More subtle elements on the dial, such as the typography, can sometimes be overlooked”

With the enamel of our watches the undeniable star of the show for many people, more subtle elements on the dial, such as the typography, can sometimes be overlooked.

The stripped-back dials of the Model 1 Precious Metal Series – galvanically plated in red gold, white gold and black rhodium – allow room for these elements to breathe.

Unusual in their construction, the dials are bowl-shaped. The chapter ring around the edge of the dial curls upwards towards the edge of the gently domed crystal, with a brushed finish contrasting with the sand-blasted flat surface to create a tantalising play of light. The numerals, pad-printed onto the dial, are compellingly accentuated by the mixed textures below.

The Hands

Just as intertwining the design and making processes is an integral part of what we do here at anOrdain, these separate elements can sometimes also weave their own webs to create a tapestry of narrative continuity throughout each part of the watch.

The various design elements of the Model 1 - and now the Model 1 Precious Metal Series - borrow from one another. The cartographic influence permeates everything from the numerals to the indexes and hands.

anOrdain watchmaker Chris Roussias at work staking watch hands

Drawing inspiration from the classic syringe style, the hands are reminiscent of vintage compass needles and serve as extensions of the numerals below.

The hands of the Red Gold and White Gold are heat-treated to different temperatures, achieving uniform rich purple and deep blue finishes, respectively.

Polished and finished in a white lacquer, the hands of the Black Rhodium perfectly match the bold white of the numerals and indices and pop spectacularly against the black dial.

The Result

The Model 1 Precious Metal Series is a new direction for us, but each watch still feels and looks thoroughly anOrdain.

We’ve kept the inner workings of the Model 1 Precious Metal Series as they were in the original model, with an ETA 2824-2, regulated and modified in-house by our team of four watchmakers, still working to power our latest iteration.

To commemorate the project, the brushed case backs are laser engraved with the Windup Watch Shop logo and individually numbered.

The Model 1 Precious Metal Series. From left to right: Black Rhodium, Red Gold, White Gold

We hope you enjoy this new version of the Model 1 as much as we and the team at Windup Watch Shop do. It’s been an interesting and informative exploration for us as a brand.

As usual, we welcome your thoughts and feedback, so please get in touch to tell us what you think about our latest offering.

So, Windup Watch Shop, thank you for reigniting the impetus to bring this project to light.

The Model 1 Precious Metal Series is available to pre-order from Windup Watch Shop in Red Gold, White Gold and Black Rhodium.

Fourteen of each colour are also available to purchase from Windup’s Summer Pop Up Shop at 347 Broome Street, Lower Manhattan, New York until August 1. They are available in a run of 150 – 50 of each colour - and are priced at $1250.