Art of Luxury Watchmaking

03 Aug 2018

Art of Luxury Watchmaking

A symbol of status and style, a luxury watch always makes a truly timeless purchase. Often passed from generation to generation, investing in a new timepiece is about more than simply following the latest trends. It’s about delving into the world of watchmaking craftsmanship, where engineering meets creative design to master the most precious thing we have – time. Award-winning British jeweller and luxury watch specialist ROX invites readers through the history of haute horlogerie with the Art of Luxury Watchmaking, shining a spotlight on the artisan designers and watchmakers behind some of the world’s most sought-after timepieces. The piece also highlights key investment pieces, including the Panerai Luminor Base. To celebrate our own collaboration with Panerai, we spoke to our Head of Accessories Emmanuel Guegan about the limited edition collection. From the inspiration behind the Panerai for Purdey Luminor 1950 Sealand watches; to the process from concept to completion, he shines a light on the impressive timepieces. What inspired The Luminor 1950 Sealand watches? Both Purdey and Panerai have very passionate customer bases who appreciate craftsmanship to the highest quality. The two brands have many common areas of focus, combining heritage with shared aesthetics and detailed functionality, applied here to an exclusive product for the outdoors. How did the collaboration with Officine Panerai come about? It came about in 2001, with both brands being part of the Richemont Group. We are always excited to collaborate with like-minded brands, and with such an amazing set of brands as are in the group! The first limited edition watches came out in 2002 and were successful with both Paneristis and Purdey owners alike. The watches are incredibly intricate - it’s obvious that a great deal of artistry and craftsmanship went into creating them. What did the design process look like? The idea of the traditional pocket hunter watch protecting its dial was the idea, incorporating embellishment through engraving to create a rugged yet beautiful tool, using the iconic 1950 Luminor case as the canvas for creation. Adding a very special complication within the lid – the signalling mirror – makes it even more special and the ultimate sports watch. How were the timepieces made? Was it a lengthy process? From initial theme and design talks to availability, we are looking at 2 years – the time it actually takes to make a Purdey gun! This will include research on the ideal artwork to fit on what actually is a relatively small steel cover, drawing stage, engraving tests. How did the engraving process differ from the Purdey gun engraving process? The process does not differ, as each steel cover is completely engraved by hand, taking the engraver over a full week of work per watch. Although the design is theoretically the same for a particular animal, each piece is unique as the master engraver will never produce twice the same design in an identical way. The definition of true luxury: craft and individuality. Could you tell us a little bit more about the movements? The Panerai for Purdey is equipped with the in-house Officine Panerai P.9000 calibre with a three-day power reserve. It has a see-through back, small second and date complication. It is a Swiss made automatic movement. Do you think that you'll introduce more luxury watches in the future? We indeed will, but can’t disclose further information at this stage. Time will tell… Article kindly written by ROX - Diamond and Thrills.