A watch to celebrate the brand’s 70th anniversary
1947 saw the foundation of French Watchmaking company Michel Herbelin, which this year celebrates its 70th birthday. An anniversary watch commemorating those seven decades of watchmaking passion is to be issued in a numbered limited series of 500 worldwide. Paying tribute to the past, this new timepiece christened Inspiration 1947 also brings beauty into the present moment, beating to the rhythm of its manually wound mechanical movement.
An inspired style
While naturally drawing inspiration from the watch designs of its earliest years – 1947 to 1950 – Michel Herbelin has taken painstaking care over every detail of its anniversary model to anchor it in the 21st century.
The case measures 40mm in diameter, its design a ubiquity of rounded curves extending into refined, plain lugs. A domed dial shelters beneath an answering curve of sapphire crystal, set off by the polished yellow gold that plates the steel case. Patterned with a matte silver sunburst, the dial heightens this model’s understated aesthetics with two hands in finely curved dagger shapes that sweep around a clearly set out minute track punctuated by gilded applique hour-markers. With a date aperture discreetly set at 3 o’clock, the classicism of the overall design is subtly roused by the graphic starkness of the dial’s small seconds counter.
Lovers of beauty will appreciate Michel Herbelin’s single-minded attention to the finish of each tiny detail. Like the ribbed, ball-shaped crown set with a blue cabochon, or the watch strap made from gold leather, artisanally hand-finished for a patina that brings the final touch of elegance to the timeless design of this commemorative timepiece.
A manually wound mechanical movement
True to the watchmaking conventions of the 1950s, Inspiration 1947 is fitted with a manually wound mechanical movement – the first seen at Michel Herbelin since 1970. As ever, a Swiss-made calibre was selected to guarantee reliability and sturdiness: the 24-jewelled Sellita 11 ½ SW216-1 oscillates at a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour and offers a 42-hour power reserve. The circular graining and Côtes de Genève pattern of its workings can be admired through a transparent caseback, to the delight of everyone who appreciates fine mechanisms.
Watchmaking expertise in the French tradition
Founded in Charquemont in the Haut-Doubs region, French Watchmaking Atelier, Michel Herbelin has been designing timepieces that highlight French watchmaking expertise for 70 years. The family-run business takes pride in producing quality watches of refined design, and making them widely accessible through its reasonable price range. In keeping with this philosophy laid down in 1947, the Michel Herbelin anniversary watch was conceived, designed, assembled, calibrated and inspected within our Maison in the Jura.
About Michel Herbelin
Michel Herbelin founded his eponymous, independent brand last century, a family-owned traditional French watchmaking company in Charquemont, in the Swiss border region of Haut-Doubs. Set in the heart of Haute Horlogerie country – close to its main suppliers to ensure absolute control over production – the company has its own design studio within the workshops where watches are assembled. Beautifully made in a price range from €300 to €2,000, Michel Herbelin watches are exclusively equipped with Swiss movements. Heir to a watchmaking tradition stretching back over 70 years, this Jura brand is spurred on by the passion of a family that has seen three generations take up the craft since 1947. Today Pierre-Michel Herbelin is at the helm as CEO, working alongside three of the founder’s grandchildren in the design and marketing departments – all of them driving forward the venture begun by their forefathers.
Anniversary Watch – limited edition
- 316L stainless steel plated in polished 20-micron yellow gold
- Bezel in 316L stainless steel plated in 20-micron yellow gold
- Domed sapphire glass
- Crown set with a blue cabochon (synthetic gemstone)
- Diameter: 40 mm: thickness 10.05 mm
- Water-resistant to 30 metres
- Limited and numbered series of 500 watches
- Matte silver sunray, domed
- Appliqué hour-markers
- Hour and minute hands, dagger-shaped, curved
- Small seconds counter at 6 o’clock
- Date aperture at 3 o’clock
- Hours, minutes, small seconds, date
- Brown leather
- Manually wound mechanical (Sellita 11 ½ SW216-1)
- Circular-grained and decorated with Côtes de Genève
- 24 jewels, 28,800 vibrations/hour
- 42-hour power reserve