Join us as we take a walk down memory lane and recall some of the unforgettable iterations of one of the most iconic ladies’ timepieces ever created.
Chopard’s Happy Sport is a brainchild of Caroline Scheufele, Chopard’s co-president and artistic director. She conceptualised a timepiece that was casual and sporty, yet at the same time, glamorous – something she could wear all day, from the gym to work and to glamourous parties. By combining sports and glamour, she not only sought to combine diamonds and steel (a rarity in the early 1990s), but also wanted it to be an extension of Chopard’s Happy Diamonds, featuring the Swiss watchmaker’s patented ‘dancing jewels technique’.
Rather than having just diamonds dancing in circuit (as seen in the earliest Happy Diamonds watch released in 1976), Caroline dreamt about having diamonds run freely across the dial, unrestrained. The craftsmen at the Chopard workshop, for starters, did not see how this would work – each diamond had to be set in ‘cups’, so as not to scratch the sapphire crystal when they skidded across its surface. He was not optimistic and foretold that the watch would not sell. However, thanks to Caroline’s persistence and determination, she pushed through, Happy Sport defied the odds, became a huge success, and as they always say – the rest is history. Up till today, the Happy Sport is still recognised as one of the most iconic ladies’ timepieces in contemporary watchmaking.
Since its birth in 1993, the timeless and progressive Happy Sport collection never stopped evolving. From the combination of various materials to the use of different precious stones in place of diamonds, to even having the stones set in charms of different shapes. Possibilities seemed endless.
Throughout the years, the Happy Sport has gone through many iterations. Some notable variations include the following:
Happy Sport La Vie En Rose (1994) – The first Happy Sport watch to have a white and rose gold case fully set with diamonds, and has a melange of rubies, pink diamonds in addition to white diamonds dancing across the case.
Happy Sport Chrono (1997) – The first chronograph model in the range, integrating a truly sporty element into the collection. It was also the first Happy Sport model to feature a 38mm case for women who liked their watches larger.
Happy Sport Square (1998) and Happy Sport Be Happy (2000) – The first square case for the Happy Sport family, and also one of the few ladies’ timepieces on the market, at that point in time, with a square case. In 2000, Chopard made a bold move to house this iconic model in a steel and rubber case and named it ‘Be Happy’.
In 2003, the ‘dancing diamonds’ began to take new forms. First came the Happy Snowflakes, which featured a diamond-set ‘snowflake’ in addition to the dancing diamonds on the dial. Painting an image of a playful winter wonderland, wearing the Happy Snowflakes was almost like having a mesmerising snow globe on the wrist that captivated many. Later in the same year, the first Happy Hearts was born – with two hearts set in diamonds and rubies respectively, replacing the dancing diamonds. Feminine yet playful, it was both a joy to wear and look at.
Noticing an increase in the ladies’ interest in mechanical timepieces, Chopard launched the Happy Sport Automatic in 2018, as well as to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Happy Sport. The Automatic was also the first model in the Happy Sport family to be fitted with the Cal. 09.01C, a self-winding movement developed in-house, specially for 30mm women’s timepieces. The following year, the Happy Sport Oval, also fitted with the Cal. 09-01C, was presented as a new shape for the iconic collection, offering an even bolder and more curvaceous option for the discerning lady.
Chopard took several bolder steps to progressively update the Happy Sport collection, including the Happy Palm (2007), Happy Sport Disco (2008), Happy Sport 150th Anniversary Edition (2009, created in celebration of Chopard’s 150th anniversary), Happy Sport La Vie En Rose (2011), Happy Sport Mickey (2011), and the Happy Sport Medium Black (2012, with rubber straps and a guilloche dial).
In 2021, Chopard released Happy Sport the First, a collection that pays tribute to the original Happy Sport timepiece that debuted in 1993. Presented in 2 variations – steel bracelet with a silver dial (1,993 pieces) and steel bracelet with diamond-set bezel and mother-of-pearl dial (788 pieces), both variations feature a supple bracelet made out of 4 rows of polished pebbles.
Not forgetting its love for and expertise in jewellery creations, the Happy Sport collection also included intricately gem-set models in the Happy Sport Joaillerie and Happy Sport Metiers d’Art ranges. Other interesting models made for women seeking out-of-the ordinary mechanical timepieces also include the Happy Ocean – a fully functional dive model with dancing diamonds, as well as the Happy Sport Joaillerie Tourbillon, the most complicated model in the Happy Sport collection, featuring a manual-winding L.U.C tourbillon movement produced by Chopard, snow-set dial and a bezel festooned with baguette diamonds.
To celebrate the joy of Cortina Watch’s 50th anniversary together with the spirit of joie de vivre embodied by the emblematic Happy Sport collection, Chopard has put together the ‘Happy Sport – Tale of an Icon’ exhibition, in collaboration with Cortina Watch. You will be able to see the above-mentioned timepieces as a retrospective, up-close and in full view at the exhibition held from 3 to 13 March at Paragon, Singapore. Click here to pre-register your visit.
Discover the Chopard’s Happy Sport watch collection in our boutiques.