BBG Loves: Swatch x BAPE

12 June 2019

Words by Nathan Henry

Swatch X Bape - a six-watch collaboration collection exhibited in Tokyo and inspired by the world and five major cities, Tokyo, Bern, London, Paris, and New York.

Recently, Boys by Girls ventured to the other side of the world for a visit in Tokyo to experience the new collaboration between Swatch and Japanese streetwear brand A BATHING APE. We stayed in the Ginza area of Tokyo, where our hotel room overlooked the beautiful Hamarikyu Gardens, which we sought to explore - leaving our minds drift aimlessly whilst taking in the wonders of Japan. The impressionable trip was a sensory experience from start to finish.

The Swatch x BAPE collaboration launched us on a trip around the world with their six-watch collection. The six watches represent five major cities, Tokyo, Bern, London, Paris, and New York, and the world. Each watch interprets the classic BAPE cameo design whilst the colours are inspired by the iconic cities. We travelled across Tokyo to various locations to explore all of the six watches.

Our journey began in Roppongi Hills, where we were introduced to the Tokyo and Bern watches. Both watches were shown in glass cabinets alongside an accompanying video which embraced the culture of the respective cities. Next stop was a regal one - the London watch was showcased in the place where Her Majesty stays whenever she’s in Tokyo. At this grand reception, the London watch was exhibited alongside the Royal Jewels of BAPE; diamond encrusted ape face necklaces.

With a large leap across the English Channel, we landed in a burlesque club in Quartier Pigalle. Burlesque dancers dressed in luxurious, sparkling attire served up the Paris watch and tasty macaroons. Our time at the club came to end and we teleported across the pond to the Big Apple. The location was a New York pizza joint where the watch was served by the slice from pizza boxes. With bellies filled with New York style pizza and beer, the evening wrapped in the nightclub 1OAK for the Swatch x BAPE after party where we laid our eyes on the World watch. It was a fitting end as we all came together to mingle and listen to performances by Japanese musicians.

The Swatch x BAPE collaboration coincided with Swatch launching a new design initiative, BIG BOLD. The six-watch collection is inspired by urban streetwear and features a striking Ø47mm watchcase. Each watch is limited to either 983 or 1993 pieces to reflect the launch of Swatch in 1983 and BAPE in 1993.

The collection is available to be explored here.

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