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Eight timepieces to usher in the new year

Audrey Simon
Audrey Simon • 5 min read
Eight timepieces to usher in the new year
Eight timepieces to usher in the new year
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In the book Alice In Wonderland, the protagonist asks White Rabbit how long forever was. His reply: “Sometimes, just one second.” In one fleeting second, these timepieces are a beautiful sight to behold. Here is an in-depth look at each

Breguet respects the Chinese zodiac sign through the Classique 9075, which captures the playfulness and intelligence of the rabbit by the manufacturer's artisans. The result is breathtaking with the sophisticated enamel craftsmanship and hand-engraving techniques. The dial depicts a dynamic scene in which six rabbits play around the greens against fluffy clouds. All these are hand-engraved on an 18-carat white gold dial, while the central motif is engraved below the surface of the enamel, and rabbits are engraved on the enamel and outlined at a maximum height. After careful preparation, the enamel is applied on the dial in several layers and placed in an oven at 800°C. Finally, the dial must remain at a well-defined final thickness, securing a delicate stage of sizing and the height and aesthetic finishing of the dial.

The Year of the Rabbit is welcomed with a new edition of its Villeret Traditional Chinese Calendar model. Crafted from platinum in a 50-piece limited edition, this watch displays the main indications of the Chinese calendar on its dial, while its oscillating weight honours the new year’s zodiac sign. The white grand feu enamel dial features a chapter ring composed of gold appliques swept over by hands shaped like hollowed-out sage leaves. The Gregorian calendar dates are indicated by a blued steel serpentine hand. They are painted in enamel, as is the main information of the Chinese calendar — the double hours — the day and month with the mention of the leap months, the signs of the zodiac, as well as the five elements and the 10 celestial pillars.

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Chopard's iconic Happy Sport watch has an 88-piece limited edition Year of the Rabbit collection. The watch hits the auspicious mark twice; one with the colour red and the other with the rabbit depicted on the mother-of-pearl dial. Five dancing diamonds are inside the 33mm diameter dial that combines stainless steel, and ethical 18-carat rose gold. The rabbit is depicted seated, with its muzzle pointing towards 2 o'clock and its long ears raised. Its posture lends an elegant touch of mischief perfectly suited to the identity of the Happy Sport collection. The Happy Sport Year of the Rabbit runs on the Chopard 09.01-C movement, entirely developed and crafted in the workshops of the Maison. Measuring 20.40mm in diameter and 3.65mm thick, it has a 42-hour power reserve.

Franck Muller
If anyone dares to be cheeky, it has to be Franck Muller with the #FR2NCK MULLER Vanguard in collaboration with Tokyo-based streetwear label #FR2. Why daring? Take a look at the rabbits and you will see them in a very provocative Fxxking Rabbits motif. We love its edginess with a matte white dial base that establishes a high key aesthetic upon which black hands, markings and appliqué indices lie. Franck Muller’s tonneau-shaped Vanguard case has been rendered in a new carbon and glass fibre composite reserved for Southeast Asia-exclusive models only.

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Harry Winston
The Jade Rabbit gets in the spotlight with Harry Winston’s tribute to this auspicious year. According to folklore, the dark markings that can be seen on the Moon represent the silhouette of a rabbit, and how the rabbit reached the Moon is explained by the legend of the Jade Rabbit. The story unfolds on the dial that depicts the Jade Rabbit gathering wildflowers to prepare the elixir of eternal life. Done in 18-carat rose gold, the rabbit's silhouette is embellished with signature Harry Winston diamonds.

The classic and elegant Portugieser in a 40mm stainless steel case features a striking burgundy dial, gold-plated hands and appliques. This is the chosen watch to commemorate the Year of the Water Rabbit. Limited to 500 pieces, this timepiece gets its heartbeat from the IWC-manufactured 82200 calibre. Watch the intricate inner workings through the transparent sapphire case back that shows the gold-plated rotor in the shape of a rabbit. The Portugieser Automatic 40 Edition “Chinese New Year” is delivered with two calfskin straps: One in black, the other with a burgundy colour gradation.

TAG Heuer
Limited to only 500 pieces, the TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph Year of the Rabbit watch is swathed in black, red, and gold. The colour red features are subtle to remind us what it represents: Luck, joy, passion and boldness. Based on the 44mm TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph, the watch has a steel case, a deep black ceramic fixed bezel with a tachymeter scale echoing its racing origins and a custom-designed dial. In a never-before-seen design is the black dial with printed lines representing a rabbit’s fur, which brings texture and depth to the watch.

Vacheron Constantin
Regarding Métiers d’Art, Vacheron Constantin is one of the few experts in the world of horology. The Rabbit from the Chinese zodiac is given a fresh interpretation through the expertise of master engravers and enamellers. The vegetal motifs are etched directly into the metal by adopting a classic Chinese iconography method. The pattern remains semi-embedded and stands out from its gold base by a subtle stage setting to give the rabbit an illusion of floating over the dial.
Next is the very delicate Grand Feu enamelling, a technique that remains the preserve of very few skilled artisans. Applying the enamel in successive layers enhances the intensity of the blue or bronze-toned dial. Achieving the necessary mastery of colour and reactions to firing at temperatures between 800°C and 900°C calls for expertise that can only be acquired over long years of experience. The animal, made of platinum or pink gold, is hand engraved and delicately applied to the dial centre.

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