Like the caviar that bears its name, Ebel's redesigned Beluga watch epitomizes luxury.
The timepiece, which is a signature style of the 97-year-old Ebel brand, is an updated, extravagant version of its former self, featuring a larger face, integrated crown and refined bracelet link.
The team behind Ebel, which Movado Group Inc. bought in 2003, felt the piece was due for a facelift.
"Beluga remains one of the most recognized pillars of our collection," said Steve Cohen, Ebel's president of the Americas. "And we thought it was time for an update. Over the last several years, we've seen a trend toward larger watches and diamonds, and while diamonds used to be perceived on 'evening only' watches, it's now an everyday accessory in a woman's wardrobe."
Introduced in 1985, the Beluga watch always has been about the bling. It was one of the first timepieces on the market to fuse steel and diamonds. Ebel made sure that the DNA of the watch has not been lost in its redesign. It maintains its iconic design by combining such materials.
The updated Beluga will launch at Baselworld and hits international doors in the spring. The price range has risen slightly, now selling for $5,950 to $19,900, up about $150 from last year's models. Where Ebel had produced a plain bezel style in seasons past, the new watches all feature diamonds.
At the heart of the collection is the Beluga Caviar, made entirely of white and black diamonds with an onyx-studded dial and stingray strap. Only 10 pieces will be sold worldwide at about $58,000.
With its luxurious look and use of precious materials, the Ebel brand is establishing itself as a luxury player.
"We are elevating Ebel into the global marketplace of luxury brands," Cohen said. "And women love diamonds. No one is afraid to wear a steel-and-diamond watch with jeans anymore."
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast