Cate Blanchett wearing an IWC Watch

Born in 1868
Origin Switzerland
Prices from £3,250
Famous for  Bradley Cooper wears a Big Pilot 7

Since 1868, the Swiss watch manufacturers have been creating masterpieces of haute horlogerie that combine precision engineering with exclusive design. American, Florentine Ariosto Jones founded the ‘International Watch Co.’ in Schaffhausen, far from the watchmaking centres of French-speaking Switzerland.

IWC demonstrated its innovative spirit in the Pallweber pocket watches, with their revolutionary digital display for hours and minutes and, by the end of the 19th century, saw the appearance of IWC’s first wristwatches featuring the 64-calibre pocket watch movement.

Current collections or ‘Families’ of watches represent an individual look and theme from Ingenieur, Portuguese, Da Vinci, Portofino, Aquatimer and new additions such as the Pilots watches, Boutique Editions and mainline collection.

In 2014, IWC completely confounded the watch world by launching the IWC Portofino Midsize collection, which, to all intents and purposes, was a watch collection for women. It was a masterclass in how to create an intelligent range of watches women actually wanted to wear. It was also accompanied by a stunning photo exhibition featuring brand friends Cate Blanchett, Emily Blunt, Ewan McGregor and Christoph Waltz shot in black and white by Peter Lindbergh cavorting around the Italian riviera.

It perfectly summed up the ethos behind both the new collection and the brand as a whole – something sophisticated that appeals to adults. Arrested developers need not apply.

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