Character watches have become increasingly popular as a fun, creative expression in watches. We’ve seen it through figurines like Mickey Mouse, Popeye, Blake & Mortimer, Minions and others. The Finnish independent watchmaker Stepan Sarpaneva has played around with the concept of the character watch as well, under his more affordable S.U.F. Helsinki brand with a dial depicting Moomin, a famous Scandinavian character. And Moomin is back for a second round but this time in a true Sarpaneva watch, with the new Sarpaneva x Moomin Limited Editions.
Moomins are a family of fairytale characters conceived by Swedish-Finnish illustrator Tove Jansson, and feature in books and comics, as well as TV series and films. The Moomins are white coloured, round characters, with a bit of a likeness of a hippo. The Moomins are in fact, trolls, something widely found in Scandinavian culture and folklore.
The main character is Moomintroll, a young boy part of the Moomins family. Moomintroll is also the character we see on the dial of the Sarpaneva x Moomin L.E’s. The image pictured on the dial is that of Moomintroll resting between trees and shrubs, while he waits for a hand-carved bark boat made by his mother, Moominmamma. The image comes from the 1955 book Moominsummer Madness by Tove Jansson.
Before we get to the details of the dial, I’ve mentioned the Moomin watch has been elevated to Stepan’s eponymous high-end brand for the first time. While previously found in the more affordable, simpler S.U.F. Helsinki brand, it is now encased in the signature Sarpaneva case. This case, made from high-grade Outokumpu steel, measures 42mm in diameter and 11.4mm in height. The case has distinct notches in the bezel, caseband and caseback, and a signature Sarpaneva Moonface crown positioned at 4 o’clock. Both front and back are covered by sapphire crystals.
The dial is where the Sarpaneva x Moomin really comes alive. It is a three-piece steel construction, with a lot of depth to it thanks to the multiple layers. The image of Moomintroll resting and waiting for his mother to complete the bark boat is crisp, with engraved trees and bushes surrounding the main character. The background, and some of the stems in the foreground, are hand-painted with multiple colours of Super-LumiNova. The resulting spectacle is a fun, whimsical play of colours and brings even more life to the dial.
Time is indicated by a set of hand-made hands, in typical Sarpaneva style. A total of four different types of hands are available; Steel Rhodium, Flamed Blue, Red Gold and Pitch Black. All come with a Super-LumiNova insert in the spear-head like tips. Surrounding the dial is a shaped chapter ring with open roundels doubling as hour indices. This chapter ring differs from the first Moomin watch by Stepan Sarpaneva.
The Sarpaneva x Moomin L.E. is equipped with a modified Soprod A10 automatic movement. This Swiss-made calibre is considered an alternative to the ETA 2829, and measures 25.60mm in diameter and 3.6mm in height. It runs at a frequency of 28,800vph (or 4hz) and provides 42 hours of power reserve. A Sarpaneva watch wouldn’t be complete without the Angry Moonface somewhere, and next to the one on the crown we also find it on the winding rotor. The Moonface has Super-LumiNova for the eyes and mouth, tying it in with the front of the watch.
The Sarpaneva x Moomin collection is presented on a black salmon leather strap, tapering from 22mm at the lugs to 18mm at the buckle. The signature Sarpaneva pin buckle is made of steel. The watch is limited to 25 pieces per colour, so 100 pieces in total. The price is set at EUR 12,000 excluding taxes.
For more information, please visit SarpanevaWatches.com