there are several ways to show information, and in particular, time. switzerland-based company 42foundry has created ETCH, a timepiece that explores a new way of showing time by exploiting a real 3D effect. with the digital world we are used to see 7-segment digits, graphical engraved or embossed fonts, and in general, displays and clocks everywhere. the tech company wanted to blend —in an unconventional way— all these common experiences and to reach a product that’s able to surprise at every single minute.


video courtesy of ETCH



to showcase time, ETCH transforms an elastic membrane into digital numbers, while engraving the surface with a smooth and relaxing actuation. made of an elegant aluminum frame and an stretchable and flexible surface of elastomer, ETCH gives a physical presence to time with the 3D numbers engraved in its membrane. with the app — if necessary — you can sync the ETCH time with the current time. the app also lets you choose 2 ways of displaying time: the first one ‘sync & go’ will display time every 30 seconds. the second one, ‘sync & sensor,  will show time every 30 seconds but only if there is ambient sound or noise.

etch clock 42 foundry designboom
ETCH front off



‘every passing second is a unique moment in time that will never exist again. the ETCH clock is a reminder of this sentiment and encourages us to make the most of time.’

etch clock 42 foundry designboom
ETCH front on 

etch clock 42 foundry designboom
engraving detail



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: juliana neira | designboom