The whole concept of doing everything in-house is usually the preserve of the big names of watchmaking – Rolex, Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet. However, Schwarz-Etienne, a 100-year-old under-the-radar name, has not only got levels of vertical integration that would make some of the more established names weep, it also goes the extra mile and makes its own balance springs, something very few brands do.
Revived in the mid-noughties by businessman Raffaello Radicchi, this petite Swiss power house has since launched in-house movements, tourbillons and even a timepiece that is inspired by the alleged alien landings at Roswell in the New Mexico desert in 1947 and that contains a piece of rock from the Matterhorn.
The finished watches combine the iconoclastic vision of the likes of MB&F with the classical design of more traditional names such as Breguet.
Schwarz-Etienne may be over 100, but it is still ripping up the rule book when it comes to high-end watchmaking.