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Baltic: Watches you can’t wait to have, but don’t exist yet

Anna Wu-Chauvineau
Le 25 January 2017
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BALTIC.  6 letters and 2 syllables that invite you into a world of snow, sub-degree temperatures, and outdoor exploration.  I bet you haven’t heard of this brand yet, which is normal.  Only a few prototypes exist.

This being said, these Baltic watches have a deja-vu air about them, a little something familiar that makes it so easy to accept them with open arms…

Baltic Watches Test & Review

The Concept

A Watchmaking Legacy

The “Step-case”: a legendary feature that we, fans of vintage chronographs of the 1940’s, are very comfortable with. A little “step” between the case’s different parts.  This is a design we’re familiar with.  This is a design we like.

A monobloc watch with serious presence.  An alluring style echoing the Longines 13ZN back in the day, enticing us just as much.  Slipping a Baltic on the wrist brings us back in time, with just as much pleasure.

Baltic Watch

A Family Saga

Etienne, founder of the brand, has genuine love for vintage pieces.  He has a “modest” collection, a part of which has been carefully maintained by his father.  It is made up of respectable timepieces that have marked the history of watches, not to mention a handsome number of chronographs.  The passing on of emotion and passion is crucial for Etienne.

His entrepreneurial drive took care of the rest: proposing vintage-inspired timepieces, by creating an eclectic dial design of various styles.  The whole with hand-wound mechanical movement.  A smooth and tasteful watch.   This is the stuff dreams are made of.  We’re fans, if you hadn’t noticed.

The launch of BALTIC on Kickstarter

Kickstarter, the crowdfunding platform and launcher of projects with potential.  As you may have guessed, Baltic will soon make their entrance.  You can now mark your calendars for April 2017, an important moment for the launch.  Two choices open up to you: straightforward financing, or an “Early Bird” special price.

You will probably take a long time deciding between the famous hand-wound chronograph, and the elegant 3-hand automatic.

Baltic Watch

An in-depth look into the world of BALTIC

The components of these watches, primarily from Asia, are assembled in a workshop in Besançon, France to have a strong grip on quality control, and in turn to strengthen reliability.

The hand-wound chronograph

The famous chronograph and its “Step-case.”  A watch of magnificent proportions in a 38mm case.  Yes, you heard correctly, 38mm.  Finally, a watch of a reasonable size, a return to the true vintage timepiece.  A bi-compax case with a subsidiary seconds dial at 9 o’clock, and a 30-minute totalizer at 3 o’clock.  God is in the detail, and you’ll notice that the subsidiary dials have been “vinylized.”  A dominoes-type minute track, and small hourly touches of SuperLuminova (except at noon and 6 o’clock) complete the smooth dial.

Baltic Watches

Regarding the movement, nothing pairs the model better than a traditional hand-wound mechanism, as if to remind us of the success of chronographs.  This particular chronograph includes a Seagull ST19 movement, whose predecessor was the Venus 175.

Baltic Watch

The 3-hand automatic movement

Etienne doesn’t only have this chronograph on mind.  Other ideas and a few prototype models for an automatic timepiece with 3 hands to continue along the same lines as the hand-wound chronograph above.  A little patience gents, it’s in the works. Baltic Watches

What’s next?

The traditional world of watches is evolving at great speed just like climate change.  While the mammoths are taking their precious time and the headstrong in denial are falling down, real change is being generated by newcomers like Baltic.  Up and coming brands, through which dreams become reality, put the consumer at the center of product decisions once again.

2016 was the year that William L 1985 made its grand entrance, and we were among the first to present this young and exciting brand.  2017 will be most likely be the year of Baltic watches.  In any case, we believe so.

Meantime, we invite you to visit their website or Instagram account for more details and join in on the countdown to their official launch.