When thinking about leading creators of luxury writing instruments, Montblanc immediately comes to mind. It is known for its high-quality luxury goods. The company does not only specialize in high-end pens.
It also offers various products like leather goods, accessories, eyewear, perfumes, and watches. These commodities are popular amongst connoisseurs of luxurious items. The name is associated with keepsakes and personalized gifts that embody the pinnacle of artisan prowess and traditional craftsmanship.
The origin of Montblanc began in 1906 in the city of Hamburg, Germany. Alfred Nehemias and August Eberstein wanted to create a pen that had a built-in ink well that would allow people to carry their pens with them anywhere.
They came up with a non-leaking writing instrument in the same year, furnished with a piston converter. This device is more known now as the modern fountain pen. They soon developed a range of simple-to-use fountain pens.
And it was not long before Christian Lausen, Wilhelm Dziambor, and Claus Johannes Voss took over the company. Together, these three men set Montblanc on its journey to becoming a worldwide brand.
A little background story
The name of the company was not originally Montblanc. The company prided itself as a “manufacturer of high-class gold and fountain pens,” which until today encapsulates its essence as a brand. People used to call it the “Simplo Filler Pen Co.” since it initially operated as a pen manufacturer. The name referred to the simplicity of its product designs.
In 1909, the company released its first design called Rouge et Noir that became highly successful. In the following year, the company changed its name and registered the Montblanc trademark. It got its name after the highest peak of the Alps in Europe, the Mont Blanc. This symbolizes the brand’s high value for the quality and fine European craftsmanship.
1913 was the year the brand officially used a rounded white star as its brand emblem. The logo represents the snow-capped peak of the mountain. It remains a fixture in the crown of every Montblanc watch today.
The pen most associated with the brand is Meisterstück, which means masterpiece in German. It is their signature pen that was first sold back in 1924. This is also the first fountain pen of theirs and is engraved with 4810 numbers on its nib representing the mountain’s height.
In 1966, Montblanc expanded and started making men’s jewellery. They joined the watchmaking industry and introduced their first watch in 1997. Montblanc took part in the Salon International de Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) watch fair in Geneva.
This is where their design caught significant attention from various international jewellers. It initiated the brand to get into this industry. They were a company that was initially a pen store, but with their outstanding craftsmanship, they also eventually revolutionized the watchmaking industry.
From the beginning, Montblanc intended to be uncompromising in the quality of its timepieces: its watch should be just as much of the desired luxury good as its pen, not differing from the attention to detail and quality. In some cases, they even have the same classic design touches.
Named after Montblanc’s first pen, the brand released its first timepiece design, the Meisterstück watch. A collection of this sports watch was released in 2000. Its dial has the same deep blue hue as the fountain pens. It has a typeface that reflects the era of when the first Meisterstück pens were unveiled.
The pens influence the names of the watch models. As the Meisterstück watch took its cues from the Meisterstück pen, the Montblanc TimeWalker watch collection took inspiration from the Starwalker series of pens.
In 2007, the Institut Minerva de Rechercheen Haute Horlogerie was created in Bernese Jura, Switzerland that further enhanced Montblanc’s watchmaking expertise. This allowed the company to obtain its technical know-how. One of the timepieces from the said collection, Montblanc TimeWalker Automatic Chronograph, took inspiration from Minerva’s exceptional history.
It comes in a 41 mm stainless steel case with a contrasting black background and silvery-white counters at 6 and 12 o’clock. It features luminous silver-tone hour and minute hands and is furnished with a practical tachymeter scale for speed timing, indicated on the fixed ceramic bezel. Built with a leather strap, this is a perfect watch if you want one modeled with elegance and a sporty feeling.
Artistic designs back with technical excellence.
Montblanc TimeWalker Manufacture Chronograph memorializes the golden age of motor racing with its elaborate details. Its dial features a white background with black tri-counters; this design has become known as the panda design. The bold contrast between these features resembles the dashboards of classic racing cars.
It gives the timepiece an overall appealing appearance. Its stainless steel case measures a relatively compact 43-mm across. It is a satin-finished case that gives the watch an automotive look and for scratch resistance. The watch assures utmost robustness and durability with it being powered by the brand new manufacture chronograph Calibre MB 25.10.
The brand also has a collection of watches designed for women. One of the most known among them, and is the key feminine product of the line, is the one under the name Bohème. It features a simple yet timeless design. It has an element that allows the wearer to easily tell whether it is day or night with just a simple glance at the dial.
The day is indicated with a light blue sky and gold-coloured sun, while a smiling gold-coloured moon surrounded by stars in a dark blue sky depicts nighttime.
Every Montblanc watch is built with intricate techniques executed with utmost precision and care. Montblanc, with its extensive knowledge in watchmaking, has developed its in-house movement. This movement first powered the Nicolas Rieussec in 2008.
It featured the MBR200 movement and emphasized twin barrels that enabled it to have a power reserve of 72 hours. This timepiece model was influenced by the very first time writer, Nicolas Rieussec. He was a French watchmaker who invented the first chronograph to time horse races, hence the name. This became one of the most recognizable Montblanc watches.
Many, if not all, of today’s Montblanc timepieces, are crafted in the village of Le Locle, in the Jura Mountains in Switzerland. This Swiss village has been making watches long before Montblanc started its operations. With each passing year, the brand perfects the art of exhibiting traditional watchmaking values while continuously enhancing its technological know-how. This is one of the prominent reasons why Montblanc was able to rapidly cement itself as a manufacturer of high-quality timepieces.