Hublot has once again partnered up with fashion powerhouse Berluti to create for the very first time an exceptional Big Bang Unico chronograph timepiece. The partnership between the Swiss watchmaker and the French men’s fashion house was initiated four years ago, during which Hublot and Berluti have produced some incredible timepieces together. Previously, Hublot has used their Classic Fusion watch as the base model to create the collaboration pieces with Berluti.
These Classic Fusion models featured the fashion designers iconic Venezia leather, and it’s patina, along with Hublot’s art of fusion materials. Working hand in hand with Kris Van Assche, the Creative Director of Berluti, the two brands have got together to create something special for Hublot’s iconic Big Bang Unico Chronograph.
Ricardo Guadalupe, CEO of Hublot said in regards to this latest collaboration that “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 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.”
The engineers and designers at Hublot took a look back at previous designs with Berluti in order to use the fashion house’s iconic Venezia leather on the Big Bang Unico’s dial. The process of using leather on the dial is that the leather is encapsulated between two pieces of sapphire glass, which has been intricately cut out to let the viewer admire the gears of the Unico movement sitting underneath.
The organic elements of the Venezia leather have been captured between the sapphire glasses thanks to a delicate process which has been carried out in collaboration with Berluti. This lets the leather appear in the natural state and showcases the living beauty of the natural hide unchanging. For this latest collaboration, Berluti has chosen to use their Cold Brown patina Venezia leather.
Kris Van Assche had to go looking deep in the Berluti’s archives to take inspiration from past patina leather to create the modern Cold Brown patina Venezia leather. The Cold Brown patina has a glacé finish which emphasizes the different brown shades that make up this colour. The result of long and complicated hard work, each Venezia Cold Brown patina leather will be different from one Big Bang Unico Chronograph to another, thanks to colour variations created by the Berluti Craftsmen.
In regards to using the Cold Brown patina, Kris Van Assche said that “the Big Bang chronograph’s strong, unmistakable 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.”
The innovation to use Berluti’s Cold Brown patina leather on the dial doesn’t stop there. The two master craftsmen have got together to also have the Venezia leather in Cold Brown patina shown on the watch’s bezel. In previous collaborations between the two brands, the watches have only ever featured the leather on the dial and strap. For the new timepiece, the leather bezel was possible due to the development of an all-new creation of the bezel, done in two parts.
To create the bezel, an adhesive and rigidifying resin have been used on the first part of the bezel, which is the leather that’s around 1mm thick. This is then inserted into the second part, which is the lower base, made in black ceramic, which finally is then screwed into the case of the watch. The bezel will over time, take on a patina and give it it’s own character and appearance, much like the patina leather and rubber strap.
The movement of the new Big Bang Unico Chronograph is the brands own in-house MHUB1242 calibre Unico Manufacture self-winding chronograph flyback. The MHUB1242 calibre beats at a frequency of 4Hz (28, 800 Vph) and can put out a power reserve of up to 72 hours. This movement is encapsulated in a beautiful micro-blasted and polished black ceramic 45mm case.
This special new creation will be delivered in a chest, which is signed by the two houses. Inside this chest will be an emblematic Berluti Shoehorn key ring and a travel case. Bringing together the mastery of materials of the Hublot manufacture and the heritage of the men’s fashion house Berluti, the all-new Hublot Big Bang Unico Berluti Cold Brown will be limited to a release of 100 pieces only.