BARNES Hungary

A timeless luxury piece that stood the test of time


Thursday 15 October 2020

Picture A timeless luxury piece that stood the test of time

Thanks to their creative design and accurate implementing, some silhouettes, lines, patterns and shapes have burned into the common memory – they can be recognized anywhere and anytime. In their own way, they have revolutionized. In our new series, we invite you to an imaginary journey into the world of luxury, beyond real estate.

Where the infinitely small meets the infinitely beautiful: the Calibre 101, originally designed for jewellery watches, revolutionised ladies’ watch-making when it was launched in 1929. Its miniature size and elongated design effectively opening the door to a new type of aesthetic freedom for watchmakers – the masterpiece of miniaturisation. At 14mm in length and less than 5mm in width, and weighing in at barely one gram, this tiny hand-wound calibre remains to this day the smallest mechanical movement in the world, not to mention one of the oldest still in production.

Now, at over 90 years of age, it has of course undergone various improvements in terms of materials and machining, but its dimensions and architecture remain unchanged. Its small size means that each component has to be custom-made and hand-fitted, making each Calibre 101 a unique piece.

These rare watches have graced the wrists of many extraordinary women over the years, including Queen Elizabeth II, who wore one gifted by French President Vincent Auriol at her coronation in 1953.

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