Breguet unleashes a pair of beautifully decorated calendar models in the Classic line, combining its mastery of traditional watch crafts with an elegant design interface.
In the last few months, Breguet has been dishing out excellent timepieces. After the reference 5395 and Marine Dame models, it offered up a beautiful Type XX in steel with a chocolate dial and domed crystal, faithful to an original model from the 1950s for the Only Watch auction 2019. It was then that collectors began to speculate on the possibility of a Type XX for 2020, but we’ve discovered since that the brand has other spectacular plans.
The first releases of the year are a Classique Tourbillon Extra-Plat ref. 5367 with a vivid blue enamel dial, and now two models that celebrate a Breguet dial craft — rose-engine turning — have been presented. The reference 7137 is a date and moon phase model on a multi-textured gold dial, and the second is digital day-date model with a moon phase display and sub-seconds counter. There are numerous elements which make the pair of timepieces striking examples of iconic Breguet design.
Engine-Turning, Classique Breguet
Engine-turning is an art that is less and less often seen in the industry. Better known as “guilloché main”, it uses a hand-guided lathe to etch out a pattern on a dial to create a textured dial, an age-old technique which gives the dial a truly luminous quality as light catches and scatters on its surface. While there are similar techniques in modern manufacturing, none deliver the same effect as engine-turning does. With the method, one can create multiple textures, and for circular decorations, a traditional lathe is used, while straight line designs employ a straight-line machine.
Through a combination of the two, Breguet has delivered a reference 7137 dial that’s artistically impressive and a delight to behold. On the date display sub-dial, a damier checkerboard pattern is etched out, while the main dial has a hobnail or clous de Paris pattern carved into it. The power reserve display uses a basket-weave texture, and the dials are in gold. Two models in white or rose gold exist for each reference, and the white gold versions have a Breguet blue dial, while the rose gold version is a silvered dial, with silver powder applied over the gold dial using a brush.
In the reference 7337, three guilloché main patterns are applied, with a barleycorn pattern around the main time display, hobnailing within the hour chapter ring and a damier checkerboard pattern on the small seconds display. Two apertures on either side of the dial indicate the day (left) and date (right). A moon phase display sits between the two apertures, with detailing that’s hand engraved on the semi-circular indicator, as well as a beautifully decorated midnight blue setting depicting the sky, along with an embossed moon that’s textured to look like the mountains and craters on our moon.
Both timepieces are powered by the same 502.3 caliber, with modifications to provide the respective indications for each watch. What’s notable is that each movement is off-centered on the back of the watch, with a full gold rotor that’s decorated with a barleycorn pattern and delivers a hypnotic effect as it spins around. The watches are all numbered and double signed, with “Swiss Guilloche Main” on the dial. The movement is regulated by a lever escapement with silicon horns and a silicon balance spring.
Technical Specifications — Breguet Classique 7137
Self-winding caliber 502.3 DR1; hours and minutes; date; moon phase; power reserve indication; engine-turned rotor; numbered and signed movement; 45-hour power reserve
39mm case in 18K white or rose gold; 8.65mm thick; 18K gold dial with engine turning; individually numbered and signed; water resistant to 30m
Alligator leather with gold folding buckle
Technical Specifications — Breguet Classique 7337
Self-winding caliber 502.3 QSE1; hours and minutes; small seconds; date; day; moon phase; engine-turned rotor; numbered and signed movement; 45-hour power reserve
39mm case in 18K white or rose gold; 9.90mmmm thick; 18K gold dial with engine turning; individually numbered and signed; water resistant to 30m
Alligator leather with gold folding buckle