For millennia, the Chinese Lunar New Year has been a time to honor ancestors and revered deities, while also heralding a fresh beginning. It is an annual ritual that celebrates the fellowship of family and the importance of cleansing. Homes are washed and scrubbed to rid the space of bad energy, while ceremonies are held to assuage the gods and scare off evil spirits.
The Year of the Dog—the eleventh in the 12-year Chinese zodiac cycle—commences on February 16, and it is said to bring forth a year full of loyalty, honesty, and of course, luck. In honor of our lovable furry friends, S.T. Dupont has crafted a limited-edition Year of the Dog collection featuring two pens and double-flame lighters set in bronze and finished in dazzling yellow gold. Inspiration for the designs comes from meticulously constructed Chinese antique wooden doors and Ruyi—s-shaped ornamental objects often used as a ceremonial scepter in Chinese Buddhism or as a talisman said to represent power and good fortune in Chinese folklore.
At first glance, the Ultra Exclusive Neo-Classic President pen ($19,500) is a maze of sharp lines and delicate metalwork. A dog’s profile is showcased on both sides of the cap, while the red natural lacquer background pops behind the delicate yellow gold antique door motif. The fountain pen also features an 18-karat sold gold nib and Ruyi-style carved stand. Its counterpart, the Ultra Exclusive Ligne 2 double-flame lighter ($19,996), borrows many design elements from the pen, including red natural lacquer, antique door motifs, and an intricately carved dog. The lighter’s ignition roller is dressed in decorative guilloché patterns, while the backside is engraved with the S.T. Dupont Paris signature and the lighter’s production number. Both the Ultra Exclusive pen and lighter are limited to 88 pieces each—a nod to eight being a lucky number in Chinese culture.
Bright red natural lacquer gleams on a portion of the cap and the majority of the barrel of the Prestige Neo-Classic President pen ($7,000). Providing the pen with balance are a pair decorative bronze endpieces finished in yellow gold and engraved with Chinese symbols and a dog sitting at attention. Unique to the Prestige collection, this Neo-Classic President pen is available as both a fountain and rollerball. The Prestige Ligne 2 double-flame lighter ($7,250) is dripping in 18-karat yellow gold with similar designs and engravings as the Ultra Exclusive lighter, minus the touch of red natural lacquer. The Prestige collection is limited to 288 pieces.