The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Discuss Christopher Ward watches
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by scooter »

Matt

As another old stager I have to say that I agree with your summarisation.

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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by TigerChris »

Dancematt wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 6:23 pm

They aren't selling watches based around a set design idea like Bremont , Rolex or bell and Ross for example they are just selling any design ideas that are popular and that will sell due to fashions of the times.
Exactly - agreed 100%. They are becoming a fashion brand
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by Commisar »

TigerChris wrote:
Dancematt wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 6:23 pm

They aren't selling watches based around a set design idea like Bremont , Rolex or bell and Ross for example they are just selling any design ideas that are popular and that will sell due to fashions of the times.
Exactly - agreed 100%. They are becoming a fashion brand
To be honest Bell and Ross are essentially fashion watches at this point......

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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by TigerChris »

Commisar wrote:
Mon Nov 16, 2020 3:14 pm
TigerChris wrote:
Dancematt wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 6:23 pm

They aren't selling watches based around a set design idea like Bremont , Rolex or bell and Ross for example they are just selling any design ideas that are popular and that will sell due to fashions of the times.
Exactly - agreed 100%. They are becoming a fashion brand
To be honest Bell and Ross are essentially fashion watches at this point......

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I'm not actually knocking CW for going down the route they seem to be - if it makes sense from a business perspective then they have to do it. Things are tough enough as it is in the current climate so if they have found a successful model to move units in volume and make them money then fair play to them and I wish them all the luck in the world - the last thing we need is another company struggling and potentially putting people in the dole queue. In business you do what works for you and your company. As I've said before, you'll win new fans and lose some existing - thats just how it works. For every person like me that they have, potentially, lost with new watch sales I'd like to think they've gained several.
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by nbg »

Dancematt wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 6:23 pm
When you go back to the beginning you can see a clear design DNA across the initial range, a simplistic Britishness almost, very subtle and under the radar. ...matching the prices at the time, over time this got massively lost and now the company just pumps out whatever designs will sell best. There is no real grounding points or areas of design that pass over from model to model.

They are not a young company anymore. Design heritage needs to be established early on, it was but it's been bulldozed so many times it's a bit of a 1930s terrace house. Charm in areas, modern in others, vintage in others but not overaly cohesive because wltoo many people have rocked the boat over time.

They aren't selling watches based around a set design idea like Bremont , Rolex or bell and Ross for example they are just selling any design ideas that are popular and that will sell due to fashions of the times.
I think it took Rolex somewhat more than 15 years to establish its design heritage...

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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by Commisar »

nbg wrote:
Dancematt wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 6:23 pm
When you go back to the beginning you can see a clear design DNA across the initial range, a simplistic Britishness almost, very subtle and under the radar. ...matching the prices at the time, over time this got massively lost and now the company just pumps out whatever designs will sell best. There is no real grounding points or areas of design that pass over from model to model.

They are not a young company anymore. Design heritage needs to be established early on, it was but it's been bulldozed so many times it's a bit of a 1930s terrace house. Charm in areas, modern in others, vintage in others but not overaly cohesive because wltoo many people have rocked the boat over time.

They aren't selling watches based around a set design idea like Bremont , Rolex or bell and Ross for example they are just selling any design ideas that are popular and that will sell due to fashions of the times.
I think it took Rolex somewhat more than 15 years to establish its design heritage...

Neil
Correct

CW seems to be zeroing in on their case designs, logo placement and indice shapes.

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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by jkbarnes »

Dancematt wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 6:23 pm
When you go back to the beginning you can see a clear design DNA across the initial range, a simplistic Britishness almost, very subtle and under the radar. ...matching the prices at the time, over time this got massively lost and now the company just pumps out whatever designs will sell best. There is no real grounding points or areas of design that pass over from model to model.

They are not a young company anymore. Design heritage needs to be established early on, it was but it's been bulldozed so many times it's a bit of a 1930s terrace house. Charm in areas, modern in others, vintage in others but not overaly cohesive because wltoo many people have rocked the boat over time.

They aren't selling watches based around a set design idea like Bremont , Rolex or bell and Ross for example they are just selling any design ideas that are popular and that will sell due to fashions of the times.
I think that sums it up perfectly!
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by bb-mobile »

Hi. First post. I came across CW while researching for a new watch. Haven’t pulled the trigger yet, but pretty sure I’ll be getting a C65 Dartmouth.

I think there are a lot of interesting thoughts in this discussion. My two cents on the comany’s DNA.

In terms of horology, CW is a young company/brand, so they have a way to go before their DNA/image solidifies. But I think there are some elements that are already identifiers.
Their value proposition: They make quality watches, back them up with a solid return/warranty offer and sell them at a good price.
Their geographic DNA: An English/Swiss company where English design is backed by Swiss engineering.
Their design inventiveness: Light-catcher cases, translucent sapphire dials, re-introduction of super compressor watch, with an exhibition caseback, quick release bracelets and hybrid waterproof straps.

I appreciate that they try different things, and that not all work. Related to this are their logo changes. I think the new logos are clever. The twin flags emblem is modern yet timeless and perfectly encaptulates the brand. The wordmark, which expresses the brand’s English name with a quintessentially Swiss typeface, Helvetica, is also modern and timeless and I think also elegantly captures the brand’s DNA. Now they just need to work out how to successfully integrate these logos into their designs.

Personally, I would love to see just the flags emblem on the dials. Think of Nike, Apple, Mercedes-Benz. I find CW over-brand many of their watches. One example is the C60 Trident Pro 600: flags and CW wordmark on dial, trident logo on seconds hand, flags on crown, trident logo and trident wordmark and CW wordmark on case back, flags and CW wordmark on bracelet clasp - or - CW wordmark and flags on strap, CW wordmark on strap buckle.

That’s about it. Anyway, it’s good to see a company like CW succeeding.
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia »

Hello and welcome. That's a fair distillation of current thinking.
bb-mobile wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 8:06 am
The wordmark, which expresses the brand’s English name with a quintessentially Swiss typeface, Helvetica, is also modern and timeless and I think also elegantly captures the brand’s DNA.
Acknowledging the Helvetica connexion, was there not also talk of the Font drawing on the work of Edward Johnston, who designed the font for the London Underground?
bb-mobile wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 8:06 am
Personally, I would love to see just the flags emblem on the dials. Think of Nike, Apple, Mercedes-Benz. I find CW over-brand many of their watches.
A good idea in principle, often suggested before. However, you have chosen three global mega-brands to compare (in watch terms, Rolex and Omega, which incidentally have the name on the dial?) If I showed a stranger in my local city the above logos plus the CW Twin Flags, which three would that person be most likely to recognise? A simple logo is fine...unless no-one knows what it is. :problem:
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by bb-mobile »

Acknowledging the Helvetica connexion, was there not also talk of the Font drawing on the work of Edward Johnston, who designed the font for the London Underground?
I hadn’t thought of that connection but I like the circularity of it, connecting back to England.
A good idea in principle, often suggested before. However, you have chosen three global mega-brands to compare (in watch terms, Rolex and Omega, which incidentally have the name on the dial?) If I showed a stranger in my local city the above logos plus the CW Twin Flags, which three would that person be most likely to recognise? A simple logo is fine...unless no-one knows what it is.
Agree. I was speaking aspirationally. Of course it takes time and plenty of ad dollars to get global recognition for a logo. I think Rolex’s logo needs the word but that Omega’s would work without the word. But you know they’re doing just fine without my advice 😬
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by exHowfener »

Think of Nike, Apple, Mercedes-Benz
While I fully understand the point you are making, Apple isn't the perhaps best example as they were involved in a (very) long running legal dispute over their own branding. As an aside, I like the 'twin flags' but I'm not sure that it's distinctive enough. Somehow it always makes me think of Tissot.
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by markee »

Personally, I would love to see just the flags emblem on the dials. Think of Nike, Apple, Mercedes-Benz. I find CW over-brand many of their watches. One example is the C60 Trident Pro 600: flags and CW wordmark on dial, trident logo on seconds hand, flags on crown, trident logo and trident wordmark and CW wordmark on case back, flags and CW wordmark on bracelet clasp - or - CW wordmark and flags on strap, CW wordmark on strap buckle.


Great idea. I agree that the word mark should make way for twin flags on the dial. Perhaps the brand name could move to the ring around the edge of the dial like on a Rolex Explorer?
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by markee »

markee wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 2:25 pm
Personally, I would love to see just the flags emblem on the dials. Think of Nike, Apple, Mercedes-Benz. I find CW over-brand many of their watches. One example is the C60 Trident Pro 600: flags and CW wordmark on dial, trident logo on seconds hand, flags on crown, trident logo and trident wordmark and CW wordmark on case back, flags and CW wordmark on bracelet clasp - or - CW wordmark and flags on strap, CW wordmark on strap buckle.


Great idea. I agree that the word mark should make way for twin flags on the dial. Perhaps the brand name could move to the ring around the edge of the dial like on a Rolex Explorer?
Sorry @bb-mobile. I tried to quote your idea in my post but it came out wrong.
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by bb-mobile »

exHowfener wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:41 pm
Think of Nike, Apple, Mercedes-Benz
While I fully understand the point you are making, Apple isn't the perhaps best example as they were involved in a (very) long running legal dispute over their own branding. As an aside, I like the 'twin flags' but I'm not sure that it's distinctive enough. Somehow it always makes me think of Tissot.
Yes, they were. I’d forgotten that ‘homage’. Interesting that in terms of corporate identification the apple became theirs.

And now that you pointed out the Tissot similarity I see it. I wonder if it might become an issue.
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Re: The Design DNA of Christopher Ward

Post by bb-mobile »

markee wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 2:25 pm
Personally, I would love to see just the flags emblem on the dials. Think of Nike, Apple, Mercedes-Benz. I find CW over-brand many of their watches. One example is the C60 Trident Pro 600: flags and CW wordmark on dial, trident logo on seconds hand, flags on crown, trident logo and trident wordmark and CW wordmark on case back, flags and CW wordmark on bracelet clasp - or - CW wordmark and flags on strap, CW wordmark on strap buckle.


Great idea. I agree that the word mark should make way for twin flags on the dial. Perhaps the brand name could move to the ring around the edge of the dial like on a Rolex Explorer?
That would be a subtle option but I wonder if it would work on all models?
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