Chopard’s Latest Timepiece Combines Asian and European Techniques

  • L.U.C XP Urushi Horse
  • L.U.C XP Urushi Horse
  • L.U.C XP Urushi Horse

Urushi, an ancient lacquer technique developed in Japan using tree sap, is the catalyst for Chopard’s limited-run L.U.C XP timepiece ($24,290). The watch depicts a horse, inspired by the 2014 Chinese New Year, adorned with lotus flowers painted onto the dial by hand. To make each piece, a skilled urushi specialist applies thin layers of resin derived from the sap of the Japanese urushi tree and then traces the fine lines, using thin bamboo brushes, with gold powder to highlight the design. The number of timepieces available is determined by the amount of sap at harvest (which occurs just once per year and generally yields very small quantities).

The newest L.U.C XP—and the latest edition in the Urushi series that Chopard launched to its Japanese market in 2009—has a 39.5 mm 18-karat-rose-gold case and a mechanical L.U.C Calibre 96.17-L movement produced in the company’s workshop in Fleurier, Switzerland. Even with two barrels, the movement is able to fit into a slimmer dial (just 6.8 mm thick) thanks to an off-center micro-rotor that is visible through the caseback. The piece is fitted with a black alligator strap and comes in a black octagonal box that is also decorated using urushi techniques on the outside and maki-e in gold on the inside. (800.246.7273, www.us.chopard.com)

From Around the Web...
A civilian-issue Breguet and a no-date Rolex Submariner are just the tip of the SoHo shop’s iceberg…
The leaders in high-end watchmaking gather in Geneva to show off their latest and greatest…
Fellows watch department is one of the top five auction houses to purchase or sell a fine watch...
Photography by Jeff Harris
The old and overlooked moon-phase complication is on the rise both technically and cosmetically…
In watches and pens, artisans are reviving the engraving-and-enamel technique Fabergé made famous…
Though much slimmer than prior editions, Bovet’s OttantaSei timepiece brims with technical details…
TAG Heuer’s most popular collection gets a striking new variant with a black ceramic case and...
Known for self-reliance, the German brand has created a movement that incorporates Swiss technology…
These highlights from Christie’s Watch Shop could be the perfect post-holiday pick-me-up for watch...
Designer Dino Modolo adds a personal touch to the reinvention of a monumental timepiece…