Who wants candy? We will, just like Richard Mille’s Bonbon series. But don’t be fooled by the advent of saccharin; the skills to make these sugary foods are by no means easy.
If the first thing you think of when you see the new Richard Mille Bonbon series is “Did they pee?”, we can’t blame you. Last year, the brand launched a watch with an innovative crystal structure. In theory, it can survive if trampled by horses in the polo field. In the previous year, this was the lightest split-second chronograph with a tourbillon in the world. They were confident enough to jump into a room full of reporters casually.
However, this year’s series was inspired by fruits and desserts. On the surface, the answer to this question is “Are they peeing?” is a resounding “yes”. The watches in the Bonbon collection may look colorful and sweet, but the burden they put on the wallet is as serious and guilty as Richard Mille expected.
So, who are the customers of these watches? It’s a collector, who raised his hand to the world with his middle finger, using the discount watches as a #baller way to say: “I have too much cash!”? Or is it that the enthusiast paid a high asking price for Richard Mille because he/she understands the essence of the brand and still represents: technological innovation and bold creativity go against the expectations of mechanical watches?
From an aesthetic point of view, it is difficult to see what the watch means to the latter. However, when you look closely at the watch, you will begin to find that the details on the watch are by no means simple fruits and candy entertainment. No, they are not coated with resin like the Japanese Sampuru (food replica). These are titanium and Grand Feu enamel with a carbon/quartz TPT case, carefully crafted by Richard Mille.
Cecile Guenat, the brand’s artistic director, was the creative idea of this exciting collection. In his explanation of the collection, he said: “Bangbang-just saying this word is enough to make you smile.” We think this fully illustrates his imagination of the series, and to be fair, after 18 months of development , Most people who interacted with the watch at SIHH 2019 did it-smile.
This series consists of only 10 different references, each of which is produced in very small batches of 30 pieces. But even with such a small number of models, Richard Mille had to develop a palette of 60 colors to make the series work. Not surprisingly, considering that the technical specifications of these watches read more like receipts from candy and grocery stores than from high-end watchmakers.
For example, RM 16-01 Fraise contains the following:
2 sour ribbons
2 lemon wedges candies
2 orange wedges of candies
In the Bonbon series, the watch is divided into two parts. Six of these references are placed in the Fruits series, and the duo’s watches are seen in the RM 07-03, RM 37-01 and RM 16-01 cases respectively. Each of these cases provides a bezel engraved with carbon TPT blocks, and then a layered Quartz TPT case is added to highlight the color.
For RM 07-03 Myrtille, Richard Mille even introduced a new turquoise color. If you’re thinking, “Well, it’s just a different color, how difficult is it to make it?” Aurele Vuilleumier, R&D manager of Richard Mille, explains: “Every new color is the result of countless tests. . We use prepreg quartz filaments (quartz filaments pre-impregnated with resin) to observe the interaction between the ingredients and the resin. We evaluate the visual appearance after shooting. It takes a year of development before using a new color Make it perfect.
The six reference points in the fruit series are decorated with 8, 12 or 16 miniature candies, such as glue drops, rotating ice cream, marshmallows or barley sugar; among the 180 watches in this limited edition series, more than 3,000 must be made Little candies. These candies are processed from pure titanium sheets in the real way of Richard Mille, and then completely painted by hand, resembling the appearance of these candies, not adults, but children. Absolutely irresistible.
Then came the Sweets series, which included Sucette, Cupcake, Reglisse and Marshmallows. This watch offers a two-tone ceramic case with a surface texture that looks creamy and almost melts in your mouth. The dial is linked to high-end timepieces. The dial is made of Taifuku enamel, one of the most respected handcrafts in the watchmaking industry.
Just like making rock candy or tempering chocolate, the enamel of Grand Feu is about temperature control. However, instead of working in a lower range, Grand Feu (French Fire) enamel requires a very high firing temperature, about 800°C. Reducing the Grand Feu enamel dial to a flat texture is tricky enough, but what Richard Mille successfully achieved with the RM 07-03 Marshmallow is a light and fluffy surface that matches the real-world texture of the dessert of the same name.