nitiated four years ago, the collaboration between the French men’s fashion house Berluti and the watchmaking manufacture Hublot has given life to a series of unforgettable watches. Bringing together the former’s legendary Venezia leather and its patina with the latter’s art of fusion of materials, these different models have all had the Hublot Classic Fusion watch as their base.
For this new reveal, the two houses have gone back to the drawing board working hand in hand with Kris Van Assche, creative Director of Berluti, to design a model based for the first time on the iconic Big Bang Unico chronograph.
Kris Van Assche: “The Big Bang chronograph’s strong, unmistakeable and modern identity reflects Berluti’s new universe and lifestyle. The patina is our trademark, usually present in our shoes and leather goods, but all that know-how can also be used for something totally different. Bringing the Cold Brown patina - which was inspired by an archive patina and renewed through a glaçage process to obtain a rich, cutting edge colour - to the Big Bang Unico is an opportunity for Berluti’s craft to be discovered in a new context. Using our tradition and heritage in innovative, forward thinking ways has opened up a world of possibilities.”
“It has already been four years since we began our partnership with the Berluti House and, for the first time, we have chosen the Big Bang Unico model as the basis of our collaboration. The final result combines an exercise in style, due to Kris Van Assche’s flair for fashion, with an amazing technical feat made possible by the expertise of our watchmakers, designers and engineers, all of whose know-how was required to master the conception of this new bezel,” said Ricardo Guadalupe, CEO of Hublot.
Thanks to their reputed mastery of materials, Hublot’s engineers here drew on the experience gained during previous collaborations with Berluti to be able to apply the house’s iconic Venezia leather to the Big Bang Unico’s dial. A construction encases the leather between two pieces of sapphire glass, cut out for the first time to allow the wearer to admire the gears of the Unico movement. Thanks to a delicate process developed in collaboration with Berluti, the organic elements of the leather have been encapsulated, as if frozen in time, so as to render the living beauty of the natural hide unchanging. And for this new interpretation, the Venezia leather comes in Cold Brown patina.
Another innovation: whereas on previous editions, it was only reserved for the strap and the dial, the Venezia leather in Cold Brown patina also features on the watch’s bezel. This achievement was possible thanks to the development of an all-new conception of the bezel, in two parts. Thanks to an adhesive and rigidifying resin, the first part of the bezel - in leather and around 1mm thick - is inserted onto the second part, which is a lower base in black ceramic, which is then screwed onto the case of the watch. The bezel will be able to continue taking on a patina over time, like for the watch strap that is a fusion of patina leather and rubber.
Diving into Berluti’s archives, Kris Van Assche decided to take inspiration from a past patina and bring it back up-to-date to create the Cold Brown patina. A glacé finish on it emphasizes the various brown shades composing this subtle colour. This patina is the result of a long and complex handwork, and each piece is unique thanks to the color variations created by this craftsmanship.
At the heart of this Hublot Big Bang could only be the iconic Unico manufacture movement, a chronograph with flyback function. Here, this MHUB1242 calibre beats from within a case of 45-millimetre diameter, and offers a 72-hour power reserve.
The Hublot Big Bang Unico Berluti Cold Brown watch fuses the heritage of the men’s fashion house Berluti, the vision of its creative Director Kris Van Assche and the mastery of materials of the Hublot Manufacture. Delivered in a chest signed by the two houses, presenting the emblematic Berluti shoehorn key ring and travel case, this model will only be available in a limited edition of 100 pieces.
Price: USD 26,200