Terra Cielo Mare Milano Classic and Chrono - Double Macro
Let me please introduce you to the Terra Cielo Mare Milano. I am not simply reading out what you can see on the dial but I am actually starting off with an assumption; what is the real meaning of this collection for a brand that bases its existence on timepieces with a military-vintage pedigree? The Milano collection is a tribute to the most influential city in Italy, the city that represents my country through its image and its entrepreneurial spirit and that is also the link between the 2016 Terra Cielo Mare and the brand from the past, a way to give more visibility to some ideas with a good potential that have never been interpreted correctly in the past. Among these ideas towered the Terra Cielo Mare Milano.
I know this brand’s current history, I also know its past history since it coincides with a time when I was slowly taking my first steps in the world of watches and I remember being intrigued by the existence of an Italian school of watch-making. In my mind, Italian people usually played a part in the management of the ideas. I think I am not exaggerating when I say that, today, Terra Cielo Mare is imbued with the real values of Italian watch-making and is also its flagship; the concept of craftsmanship that is quite prominent when it comes to those hand-made straps, the refined style, and those metal working skills are three of the characteristics that best represent those “arts and trades” of Italian history.
The Terra Cielo Mare Milano is a summary of those three values. The watch market offers a wide variety of three-hands-timepieces, they all seem to be coming from the very same production line and having been developed inside the very same marketing department, the only difference between these timepieces is that, before being released on to the market, someone has applied a particular logo to the finished product and some splashes of colour that make it slightly different from the others. The dial of the Milano Classic is not different from other dials because of its three hands but because of its texture that has been crafted using a special grained finishing and it features applied indices and Arabic numbers with a somehow Liberty-style (keep in mind that Milan is also called the “Italian capital of the Liberty-style”). The indexes aren’t simply applied but they are quite thick too, thus breaking the flat style of the dial and giving it both depth and visual amplitude.
Moreover, they close the minimal gap that exists between the flat glass and the dial so that the final effect is that the anti-glaring treatment gives you the feeling as if you were actually touching the light blue hands that have undergone a PVD-coating-treatment. Personally, I would have tried this also; I would have also applied the logo and the “Milano” writing that appears on the small seconds, but I realize that this could have possibly created some interference issues with the hours and minutes hands. I would be nevertheless curious to see the newly re-designed logo “stand out” from the dial’s base, the same way it happens with the number “12”.
The case measures 44mm, it is made of stainless steel and is quite thick; that clearly indicates that you are not allowed to mistake a Milano Classic with a standard three-hands-timepiece since this watch definitely isn’t one! This is rather Terra Cielo Mare’s very own interpretation of a three-hands-timepiece. The big crown on the right hand side of the case suggests that the caliber is a manual one and it actually is; within it is a Unitas 6498, the modern heir of a pocket caliber that has been retouched according to the brand’s specifics, this caliber is still in production today and it is one of the most interesting and accessible calibers for those who only opt for manual winding (a trend that, lately, has been growing steadily).
This brand is also famous for the originality of its straps that are all carefully thought out so as not to be mistaken with the rest, thus becoming much more than a timepiece’s accessory. The Milano Classic’s strap is made of deerskin, it is crafted in Italy – many brands turn to Italian artisans for the supplying and manufacturing of leather straps – using an original technique that makes the strap look as if it were frayed rather than used. The strap integrates perfectly well with the style of both the case and the dial and it is the very first thing that attracts all those who comment about my Milano when they see it wrapped around my wrist. If you are more into chrono watch, you can also opt for the Terra Cielo Mare Milano Chrono version, a two-counter-timepiece with a vertical display, and a "Panda" dial, and a caliber that has been exclusively manufactured by Concepto for the Italian brand. Being able to view both models in the same picture, can give you an idea of the entire collection, on the flat case-back that has been sealed using screws, you can find a reproduction of Milan’s central station.
The Terra Cielo Mare Milano Classic and the Terra Cielo Mare Milano Chrono retail at €1,790 and €2,850 respectively. This is the Terra Cielo Mare collection that gave the brand access to the more middle-class sector of watch-making while still preseving everything that makes the manufacturer easily recognizable but with a more classic and, somehow, more mature style. Among these features are, for instance, the hand-worked case and the artisan-made leather strap with its typical stitching (the Milano Chrono's is English-made).
(Photo credit: Horbiter's proprietary photo-shooting by Entropik)
Gaetano C @Horbiter