Holthinrichs Refined Elegance Ornament Limited Edition
The R.E.O or Refined Elegance Ornament, Holthinrichs began with their high-polished 3D printed 38mm Ornament steel case. Michiel Holthinrichs, the man behind the Dutch watchmaking effort, explains, “Immediately when I thought of a dandy’s watch, I thought of a grand feu enamel dial. But this would immediately shift our target price of USD 6,500 up dramatically. So, I ended up using the Japanese lacquer that I have experience with from my Blue Delft Limited Edition.”
This material, also called “stretched lacquer”, is applied in layers and when it is finished, comes remarkably close to the look of grand feu enamel but without the fragility or super-high cost. Says Michiel, “Because I knew we were going to have to drill holes in the dial for the applied Breguet numerals, I thought this was the best course.” Michiel’s attention to detail came down to creating a slightly different type of Breguet numeral than he used on the Holthinrichs Brutal Elegance Ornament Revolution dial. He explains, “Here I used numerals with a softer rounder profile which I feel complemented the lush, stunning high-gloss look of the Japanese lacquer dial better.” For the minute indexes and his logo, Michiel selected a soft grey pad-printing technique which evokes faded indexes in vintage enamel. He explains, “Initially I tried black print but it came off too harsh. I wanted something more subtle and timeless-looking and after many experiments arrived at this grey.”
For the movement, by this point, Michiel and our team had grown so enamoured with the frosted finish applied to the Brutal Elegance Ornament that we wanted to continue with this finish for our The Rake watch. Says Michiel, “There was of course the temptation to do a Côtes de Geneve and blued screws finish but there is something both charming and unusual about the frosted finish. A lot of watchmakers don’t like to use this because it shows every mark that’s made on the movement, but it is also reminiscent of the finish that was used in traditional British watchmaking in the 18th century. Since The Rake is based in London we thought this could be a fun nod to the magazine’s roots.”
The takeaway from our collaboration with Holthinrichs is that he considers every detail of his watches over and over. He explains, “We also included a kind of hidden message in the caseband of the watch which is deeply recessed so it is subtle and something for the owner to discover. I love little touches like this.”
Finally, for the Refined Elegance watch, Michiel and I wanted to add another signature touch in the form of a “beads of rice” bracelet reminiscent of the vintage Gay Frères bracelet worn with a wide array of watches by renowned collectors such as Auro Montanari, also known by his pseudonym of John Goldberger. Says Michiel, “To me this kind of ‘beads of rice’ bracelet is the ultimate touch of style and elegance and so we had to add it to the watch. It took me a while to find a manufacture that made one with the quality I required, but I finally found a great company in Germany that made the perfect one.”
The Refined Elegance Ornament Limited Edition for The Rake is priced at USD 6,500 and limited to 10 examples. Each watch takes up to six weeks to complete upon ordering, as they’re all handmade by Michiel himself. Additionally, you have the possibility to have your name engraved on the back of the watch. Please let us know what you would like engraved here, upon checkout.
Model: Ornament Box/Papers: Yes/Yes Functions: Hours, minutes and small seconds Material: Stainless Steel Dimension: 38mm Dial: White stretched lacquer dial contrasted by high-polished rounded applied Breguet numerals Case: 3D printed surgical 316L steel in high polish Movement: Hand-wound Strap: “Beads of rice” bracelet reminiscent of vintage Gay Frères bracelets; complimentary buffalo leather strap handmade in Germany Lug Width: 20mm
This product will be dispatched in 6 weeks.
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