Schwarz Etienne ROMA SYNERGY by Kari Voutilainen
The Schwarz Etienne ROMA SYNERGY by Kari Voutilainen is a collaboration between the Swiss Manufacture and the legendary watchmaker, Kari Voutilainen. Housed in a 39mm stainless steel case, this latest creation features an automatic movement and a hand-guilloché dial. This exquisite means of decoration, using a traditional rose engine lathe, extends to the beautifully appointed movement. Offered in two dial colours, royal blue and sand grey, each version is limited to just 50 pieces.
‘Synergy’ describes a situation where the outcome is greater than the sum of its parts. It seems a very apt nomenclature for this collaboration between Schwarz Etienne and Kari Voutilainen. The Schwarz Etienne ROMA SYNERGY by Kari Voutilainen harnesses the talents of the historical Manufacture, based in La Chaux-de-Fonds, and the legendary watchmaker, Kari Voutilainen.
The new model is available in two dial colours, royal blue and sand grey. Both versions have a solid silver dial featuring various hand-guilloché patterns imparted with a traditional rose engine lathe. These patterns include ‘soleil’ decoration on the hour track, ‘vague’ guilloché on the small seconds display and ‘écailles de poisson’ motif at the centre of the dial.
Silver-toned lancine-style hour and minute hands converse with matching indexes. These indexes comprise of neat batons and Arabic numerals. A small seconds display is positioned at the base of the dial, framed with a crisp chemin de fer. A further chemin de fer frames the whole of the dial, enhancing readability.
The watch is housed in a 39mm stainless steel case. Its profile is endowed with numerous contours which wonderfully flirt with light, enriching the overall aesthetic. The case back features a sapphire crystal granting sight of the self-winding movement.
The automatic Calibre ASE 200.00 is produced in Schwarz Etienne's Manufacture. The company makes its own in-house movements and, unusually, it also makes most of the regulating organ, including hairsprings. These latter components are incredibly difficult to make and require the brand to work at tolerances of just 100 nanometres (1nm=0.000001mm).
Micro-rotors are another speciality of Schwarz Etienne. While other companies also offer models equipped with a micro-rotor, they are few in number. In this instance, the micro-rotor has been decorated by Les Ateliers Kari Voutilainen. His company has also embellished the ratchet wheel with diamond drops and snailing. The bridges are hand-bevelled and feature straight flanks. Indeed, hand bevelling abounds and sits in concert with the black polished steel parts.
The aforementioned guilloché decoration found on the dial also extends to the movement. A guilloché motif, again executed on a rose engine lathe, emanates from the balance’s shock protection system, spreading outwards. The pattern is not restricted to just the balance cock but extends to all of the bridges.
The jewel and screw sinks are highly polished and an 18-carat red gold applique is positioned adjacent the balance wheel and proudly proclaims ‘Schwarz Etienne by Voutilainen’.
A colour-coordinating leather strap, featuring contrasting leather lining, is paired with a stainless-steel folding buckle, completing the model’s impressive specification.
Schwarz Etienne has incredible expertise producing movements, using cutting-edge plant to make components to minute tolerances. Likewise, Les Ateliers Kari Voutilainen practise rare crafts which are the preserve of just a few firms. Kari’s creations are renowned for their peerless finishing, attracting plaudits from the world’s watch press and legions of aficionados.
The Schwarz Etienne ROMA SYNERGY by Kari Voutilainen, jointly created by both companies, harnesses artisanal craftsmanship and watchmaking virtue, a wonderful illustration of synergy at work.