Mondaine looks ahead to summer with eco-friendly pastel collection

Mondaine Classic

The genius of Mondaine is that it never strays from its winning Classic watch design based on the Official Swiss Railway (SBB) Clock, but the company keeps things fresh every year with colourways that chime with our current tastes.

Take this year’s Mondaine Classic, for example, which is instantly recognizable with its heavyset hours and minutes hands and the red lollipop second hand on a crisp white dial.

Mondaine has chosen a silvery grey that ties together the brushed steel case and dial markers and makes vibrantly the collection’s colored fabric straps all the more refreshing.

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The straps are environmentally friendly, having been made entirely from recycled materials, and come in summery pastel shades including mint, coral and classic blue, Pantone’s color of the year for 2020.

In addition, and aimed more at Autumn/Winter distribution, there are darker shades including chilli red and anthracite grey.

All of the colored Mondaine Classic textile watch straps can be swapped without tools thanks to the brand’s quick-change system. There are 30mm and 40mm versions of the collection launching in March for around $200.

Recycled watch straps are not the only initiative at Mondaine when it comes to protecting the environment. The company has been consistently committed to sustainability and, in September 2019, switched to its own photovoltaic system on the roof of its factory in Switzerland. The solar power system now produces around 80% of the plant’s total electricity requirements.

“We care” is one of Mondaine’s mission statements and drives the company to constantly review how it can preserve the environment by reducing the footprint of its internal and external processes.

Environmental protection is the key driver behind Mondaine’s essence family, which this year has been given bold monochrome straps made of recycled PET bottles that have been turned into fibers and weaved together into a strong fabric, or wool-based straps lined with natural cork.

Mondaine has always been a fan of black and white, thanks to its association with the SBB clock. The company says, in the case of its 2020 essence watches, that the lack of other colours has a unique effect on people’s senses.

“The tonal relationship of black and white gives everything it touches mood, mystic and meaning,” Mondaine says.

“As in photography, color can be distracting and descriptive, whereas all things black and white are open to interpretation, tricking the eye to see deeper into the dimensions of light and dark and the shadows in between,” the company adds.

There will be two sub-collections launching this year. Hitting stores now are the Spring/Summer essence watches that have white matte-finished watch cases black and white contrasting striped straps said to be inspired by the cinematic play of shades from long summer days.

The Autumn/Winter models have matte black cases with woolen straps lined with natural cork.

All the essence watches are available in 32mm and 41mm versions priced at around $200.

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Rob Corder

The author Rob Corder