MONOCHROME and Austrian independent watchmaker HABRING² are proud to announce the completion of a project that is dear to our hearts. The result is the creation of a unique, highly collectable – and to all the parties involved in this project – extremely attractive new watch. A unique edition of the recently-introduced HABRING² Doppel 38, modified to create a follow-up to our Montre de Souscription 1, this one-of-a-kind watch will be offered by Maria and Richard Habring and MONOCHROME, as part of the upcoming Phillips Geneva Watch Auction XVII, with all proceeds of the sale donated to the Save the Children non-government organisation.
The story behind the creation of this watch and the idea to auction it for a charity is the result of a friendship between the Habring couple and the MONOCHROME team. It all started in 2021 when, to celebrate the 15th anniversary of our online magazine, we asked Maria and Richard Habring to create our first collaboration timepiece: the Montre de Souscription 1. Sold via a subscription process and limited to 33 pieces, this MdS 1 was our own vision of a classic, retro-styled chronograph – and a watch that we created to our own liking. This steel monopusher chronograph, with an entirely brushed case, was characterised by an attractive salmon-coloured, two-tone sector dial, inspired by some of the most glorious watches of the 1940s. Inside the watch was Maria and Richard Habring’s own monopusher, hand-wound chronograph movement, the calibre A11C-H1. This personal take on the Chrono-Felix sold out in minutes, undoubtedly propelled by its splendid salmon-sector dial.
The next step occurred in 2021, when HABRING² released their latest version of the cam-operated split-seconds complication. Also known as DoppelChronograph, the A11R was a rattrapante version of the calibre A11 that HABRING² introduced back in 2014. The following year, the Austrian watchmaking couple released the Doppel 38, a compact take on their signature split-seconds chronograph watch, housed in a 38.5mm stainless steel case instead of the usual 42mm case of the Doppel-Felix. This was when the idea of the unique piece took shape.
The creation of this watch is all about the relationship between great people. The story is as simple as this; a phone call from Maria Habring, a few weeks before the official release of the Doppel 38, announcing that they were able to fit the in-house rattrapante movement, inside a case of the same diameter as our Montre de Souscription 1. And knowing that a spare dial from the MdS 1 was still available, the idea to create a unique version of the Doppel 38, in the same style as our first collaboration watch, immediately emerged. But with one condition only: it had to be auctioned to benefit a noble cause. And both parties agreed on the terms, no questions asked.
The unique MONOCHROME x HABRING² is the synergy between the gorgeous two-tone salmon dial of the monopusher Montre de Souscription 1, with the latest rattrapante calibre A11R developed by Richard and Maria Habring and the smaller case of the Doppel 38. But this watch has more unique features, including an entirely brushed stainless steel case and a stepped bezel that differs from the classic raised and polished bezel found on the regular Doppel 38. Also, there is no inner flange on this unique piece, resulting in a watch that feels even more vintage and compact. The two-tone salmon sector dial used in the MdS1 is paired with blued steel hands, and the watch is worn on a special taupe-coloured Nubuck leather strap, with our signature light-blue leather lining.
Under the sapphire case back, which is engraved with MONOCHROME x HABRING² and PIECE UNIQUE, is an impressive hand-wound movement conceived by Richard Habring and assembled in-house, using self-made parts or components sourced from local suppliers. This cam-operated split-seconds movement, a rarity within the industry, is finely decorated with brushing, perlage and bevelling, and the parts related to the rattrapante mechanism are on full display on top of the movement.
The unique MONOCHROME x HABRING² Salmon Doppel watch, to quote our partner Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo, who will be in charge of auctioning the watch, “is an incredibly rare and unrepeatable opportunity to own a unique timepiece that was never commercialised and whose beauty, and charm is sure to impress even the most discerning of collectors“.
This unique piece will be offered as part of The Geneva Watch Auction XVII, which will take place in Geneva on 13-14 May 2023. Listed under Lot 30, and featured in the house’s catalogue, it carries an estimate of CHF 10,000 – 20,000 and is offered with no reserve. It is delivered in mint condition, accompanied by a HABRING² certificate confirming it to be a unique piece, an additional set of hands and crown, a presentation box and outer packaging.
Most importantly, please note that all the proceeds from the sale of this unique MONOCHROME x HABRING² Salmon Doppel will be donated by Maria and Richard Habring and MONOCHROME to the Save the Children Charity. Save the Children is an NGO that champions the rights and interests of children worldwide and responds to major emergencies, delivers development programmes and ensures children’s voices are heard through their campaigning.
We’d like to thank Maria and Richard Habring of HABRING² for making this whole project a reality, and Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo for adding this unique piece to their auction. And now, happy bidding!