Chanel Announces J12 Moonphase 38MM Watch

Chanel Announces J12 Moonphase 38MM Watch

Chanel Announces J12 Moonphase 38MM Watch   watch releases

The last really new J12 from Chanel was the Chromatic that aBlogtoWatch debuted to the world here. Back in 2011 when Chanel released the Chromatic it upped the ante for Chanel’s “ownership” of ceramic as a luxury material with a new metallic gray material that mixed ceramic with titanium. Chanel really started its own ceramic revolution with the original J12 watch about a decade ago. In black or white, it was anything but a polarizing design as the J12 is still beloved by many. Having said that – even though I think the J12 is a nice men’s watch – it was women who found it the most interesting.

Now, in late 2013 Chanel adds a new character to the J12 collection with the J12 Moonphase. The added moon phase complication is being debuted in a range of models that span from a classic white J12, to a Chromatic model, and even a totally jewel encrusted limited edition model (actually two of them). Though for now, the J12 Moonphase will be available exclusively in the 38mm wide size. Let’s take a look at the new J12 Moonphase which offers a bit more than just a new complication.

Chanel Announces J12 Moonphase 38MM Watch   watch releases

Chanel produced a very lovely video to go with the launch of the J12 Moonphase collection. Unfortunately, it has very little to do with phases of the moon. Chanel is first and foremost a fashion company and they full-well know that moon phase complications are more emotional than practical. I usually don’t like “hand style” versus “disc style” moon phase indicators, but Chanel did a lot here to make their moon phase indicator dial very beautiful, and easy to read. Borrowing from a number of classic timepieces, they use a serpentine-style hand against an aventurine dial. Aventurine is a sparkly blue stone that does a good job of mimicking the night sky. I was happy to see it used here and feel that it was a smart and high-class aesthetic choice for Chanel.

Though this does open up an interesting question. Why produce a new collection of ladies’ watches that focuses on a complication? Over the last few years – especially high-end watch makers – have been pushing the idea that more and more women are interested in horology versus strictly fashion and aesthetics. While there are many very passionate female watch lovers, it hasn’t been my experience that a lot of women are too concerned with complications. So I find it interesting that Chanel sees a lot of potential marketing what is essentially an astronomical complication-focused product.

Chanel Announces J12 Moonphase 38MM Watch   watch releases

Chanel Announces J12 Moonphase 38MM Watch   watch releases

Though if you absolutely had to go with a complication (aside from the time and date) that reside in a high-end fashion-oriented timepieces for mainly women, I think a moon phase indicator is a clever choice. It is an emotional complication helping to understand the phases of the moon – which in turn controls everything from tides to perhaps tempers. What is further interesting is how the inclusion of the moon phase dial altered the iconic look of the J12 dial. This is very much a fresh face if you look at the details.

First of all, on the dial you have a new shorter seconds hand that tracks the inner scale and follows the hour hand rather than the minute hand. This of course is done to keep it separate from the pointer date hand. Chanel uses a hand rather than window to indicate the date, which again is new for the series and borrowed from more traditional watches. Another interesting change is to the bezel. No longer a rotating bezel, the now fixed bezel is thinner with either simple baton markers… or of course diamonds.

Chanel Announces J12 Moonphase 38MM Watch   watch releases

7 comments
SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

It is an interesting and well done moonphase, but I don't like it. Not that people get moonphase watches for accurate moonphase tracking, but this is just basically telling you that it looks bnice, but you can't read it. "I think it's a new moon according to my watch - the wavy-gravy pointer looks like it's pretty much pointing straight up... I think". 


That all-baguette diamond LE version looks like it wants to go toe-to-toe with the Royal Blue Tourbillon... and get completely bitch slapped. 

Ulysses31
Ulysses31

The all white model looks passably OK but I think it is spoiled by the date ring and their trademark ugly notched bezel.  The moonphase, stylistically at least, is attractive though useless as Mark pointed out.  The type of air-headed customer who'd lust after these sorts of watches wouldn't give a crap about that though so as a decoration it serves a purpose.  The range goes down hill from there.  Oo, I know!  Let's throw gems at it!  It's a good job too because there aren't nearly enough sparkly vacuous jewel-encrusted baubles out there to appeal to women.  Pandering to stereotypes of what women want is alive and well.  Looks like a bloody Christmas ornament.

MarkCarson
MarkCarson

At last a moon phase indicator that is even less realistic than the standard one. The quarter cycle indicators are crescent moons while they should be half moons. What a garbage representation. Chanel has taken a marginally useful complication and made even more of a joke out of it. A true accomplishment in fashion horology.

mcv1973a
mcv1973a

Stereotypes is correct. My wife commandeered my Doxa several months ago and does not plan on returning it. Normally I'd take issue with that, but I love her too damn much.

LapYoda
LapYoda

@MarkCarson That the moon phase representation is astronomically inaccurate is true, but if you see it as a stylistic representation of a traditional moon phase disc, where a true half-moon is impossible, it starts to make more sense.  But let's be honest: this watch isn't geared toward the majority of the readers of this site.

mcv1973a
mcv1973a

I was going to put off buying the Breitling to buy her the woman's model Doxa... so I could get my watch back.

She just smiled and shook her head slowly.

Le sigh.

Trackbacks

  1. […] Chanel has launched the J12 Moonphase watch. The reason the watch has “Moonphase” in its name is because it features a special blue aventurine dial that displays four phases of the moon. The watch is available in white, black, white set with diamonds and black set with diamonds. It is water resistant to 100 meters. A Blog to Watch has more details about the J12 Moonphase here. […]