Borrowing from the past

Where tradition and innovation meet

Creativity is fluidity, and I love that there are so many different ways to express myself and my personality. Everyone knows me for getting creative with food (duh), or writing and photography, but I do have interests outside of the kitchen and office too.

People don’t often see me out of my chef’s whites so I can understand if they don’t associate me with fashion, but I’ve had an appreciation for it as an art form for as I can remember, something that was strengthened by my time working in magazine publishing as an ‘Elle’ photographer.

I love how fashion straddles the line between beauty, innovation and practicality. It’s wearable, physical art that you can use in your daily life to express yourself and your personality, how many art forms can say the same thing? One small addition to my accessories over recent years, for instance, is a bracelet or cravat around my wrist. It’s not in response to any trend, really, but my grandfather used to wear a cloth around his wrist whenever he went fishing. It was a practical thing – he’d use it to wipe his hands – but it gave me a link to my personal heritage, which always reminds me where I came from.

While I adore innovative fashion that pushes the envelope and looks to the future, there’s something about vintage and heritage inspired fashion that just speaks to me, and it’s usually because it’s so synonymous with quality. Nowhere is this more evident than in the world of watches and horology, which is one of a few industries that still draws from centuries-old technology and designs for pieces in 2022.

One such interesting heritage-inspired piece is the Portofino, named for the beautiful Italian village, from Swiss watchmaker IWC Schaffhausen. The story of the Portofino started with a simple yet surprising idea: why not turn a Lépine moon phase pocket watch into a wristwatch? IWC Schaffhausen’s head watchmaker Kurt Klaus and head designer Hanno Burtscher came up with this concept over a glass of wine. Then, as legend has it, Burtscher scribbled a pocket watch case with horns onto a napkin: the first Portofino was born. Launched in 1984, the Portofino has become one of the most successful watch families, with timepieces inspired by the classic round gold watches the company produced in the 1950s and 60s.

Recently, IWC Schaffhausen unveiled an enhanced collection of Portofino models with a case diameter of 37 millimetres as part of a comprehensive update to the collection, which has always been known for its freshness and the purity of its lines. All of them feature movements from the IWC-manufactured 32000 calibre family with a power reserve of 5 days in six new versions. In addition, the whole collection is now fitted with either calfskin straps or a newly developed 5-link metal bracelet with a contemporary and luxurious aesthetic.

Beauty and ingenuity aside, IWC Schaffhausen’s dedication to sustainability is something I truly admire. A leader in sustainable luxury watchmaking, IWC sources materials responsibly and takes action to minimise its impact on the environment. Along the pillars of transparency, circularity, and responsibility, the brand crafts timepieces built to last for generations and continuously improves every element of how it manufactures, distributes, and services its products in the most responsible way.

Discover more at iwc.com
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