The latest release from Scottish microbrand anOrdain continues its run of interesting enamel dials. The Model 3 Method combines a stamped silver dial covered with translucent enamel to create a deep, textured finish similar to that of flinqué enamel. Created in collaboration with Method Studio, a Scottish woodworking studio, the pattern resembles a wooden block that has been artistically chiselled away.
This is not the first time anOrdain has used a textured silver dial base covered in translucent enamel. We have seen it before in the Model 1 Fumé, which boasted a hand hammered finish. In the new Model 3 the indentations are far more pronounced, giving a more dramatic look.
I have been a fan of the Glasgow-based brand for a while now, and its willingness to try new things arguably shows a mindset that is lacking in the wider industry. While nothing technically new has been done here, the combination of a woodworking texture and technique, with the miniature canvas of a watch dial has given us this brilliant look that sits perfectly within the anOrdain aesthetic.
While the dial is fantastic, there is one area that I could conceivably suggest an improvement from studying the imagery that we’ve been provided. And that is instead of pad printing the markers onto the dial surface, instead printing them onto the underside of the crystal which would have left the dial texture completely untouched. But that is really the only room for aesthetic improvement that I can find here.
There is also a lot to be said here about the authenticity of the collaboration. Not every collaboration in the watch world makes sense and adds true value to each party, but here there seems to be a genuine partnership that benefits both companies. While the movement is nothing to write home about, it should not distract from this piece, given that the main focus is the dial.
It is clear that this new model represents a jump in the pricing of the brand’s standard production offering. The retail price is £1,000 more than the Model 1 Fumé, a significant increase. While reportedly none of this money will be going to Method Studio, this still feels steep despite the enamelling process taking longer than the less expensive models.
Carved and stamped
This new line in the anOrdain collection is not completely novel. We have seen the Model 3 case in various forms, including a unique piece for the Pink Dial Project charity auction, but this is the first time it has entered standard production. The case measures 39 mm by 10.5 mm with thin, straight lugs that are angled down as they extend from the case.
Inside the case is the Sellita SW300. An automatic calibre that, while affordable, doesn’t offer incredible specs with 42 hours of power reserve it is a workhorse with very little flair. This is likely part of the reason why the caseback is solid.
But the watch really is all about the dial. To create the wave effect, anOrdain turned to woodworkers Method Studio, which prototyped multiple different chiselled looks and finally settled on the one we see here. To scale the design down from a block of wood to the dial, they had to scan it using a high-tech light scanner at Glasgow School of Art, which was the only type of this machine in the country. Once converted into a CAD file it was possible to laser cut this onto the steel die that will stamp each of the silver dials.
The rest of the process in creating the dial anOrdain are very familiar with, creating multiple layers of coloured, translucent enamel. However, due to the uneven surface the difficulty in ensuring a consistent level of colour and thickness in the enamel is doubled. This dial is being produced in two different colours, aqua and lichen.
As an additional extra, buyers are given the option of a hand-carved mini watch trunk made by Method Studio for an extra £250 – a nice touch that adds to our statement above about this being a great example of a collaboration in the watch world.
This watch is only being made available to those who already have a build slot on the anOrdain waitlist, which currently extends to 2027. So getting hold of one will be tricky if you are not already registered with the brand.
Key facts and price
anOrdain Model 3 Method
Diameter: 39 mm
Height: 90.5 mm
Material: Stainless steel
Water resistance: 50 m
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 42 hours
Strap: Suede or leather with pin buckle
Limited edition: No
Availability: Available to those with a build slot on the brand’s waitlist
Price: £3,500 (US$ 4,394)
For more information, visit anordain.com.