If you’re looking for a unique and memorable luxury timepiece for yourself or as a holiday gift, Girard-Perregaux has just released a trio of watches that showcase the brand’s craftsmanship and sense of design. These limited edition watches feature a distinct enameling process that produces a timepiece that is guaranteed to draw admiring glances.
There are a couple of reasons why 1966 was a memorable year for Girard-Perregaux. G-P introduced the Gyromatic, making the brand the first to produce a mechanical watch movement with a 36,000vph balance and also was honored by the Neuchâtel Observatory for excellence in precision watch making. No wonder Girard-Perregaux has named a line of fine watches for their favorite year!
While the earlier watches in the 1966 line have a more traditional look, the latest additions are much more original and unusual. The first thing you will notice about these new watches from Girard-Perregaux is the enamel dial that displays the brand’s exacting expertise. The traditional enameling techniques involve fixing the enamel powder with heat during the delicate firing process, resulting in a lasting color that endures for years.
Two different enameling processes are used to create these designs. The first is called Miniature Painting, which begins with a base plate enameled in white. Colored enamels are then applied to the dial’s surface using a microscope. After every application the dial is fired and each piece in finished with a clear layer of enamel.
The second process is Cloisonné, in which applying liquid enamel into shapes fashioned from fine gold wire using a brush creates designs. Next the piece is fired in a furnace and cooled before being sanded with a hard stone. The next step is manually polishing the dial with a diamond file before the final firing, known as “gilding.”
All of this sounds intricate and time-consuming, but the results are dazzling.
The first watch in the Girard-Perregaux 1966 collection displays the magnificent head of a thoroughbred Arabian horse rendered in a hand-painted miniature.
The other two timepieces in the trio feature a beautifully detailed map of the world rendered in Cloisonné enamel with delicate gold wires delineating the enamel hues of the continents.
Technical specs include a 40mm pink gold case with anti-reflective sapphire crystal and a 26-jewel self-winding mechanical movement. Each watch has a power reserve of at least 46 hours and is water resistant to 30 meters (3 ATM). Bands are made from black or brown alligator with a pink gold clasp. Each style will be available in a limited edition of 50 pieces each.
There are no official prices yet, but other watches in the Girard-Perregaux 1966 sell for around $29,000.