Kurono Tokyo Grand:Hagane Replicates Swordmaking Patterns With Urushi Lacquer

Japanese independent Hajime Asaoka’s Kurono Tokyo imprint is about to drop a limited edition urushi lacquer dialed watch, which takes a bold stand against flippers by printing the name of its owner on the outside of its presentation box.

The Grand:Hagane features a dark amber urushi lacquer “Tamahagane” steel dial with a pattern inspired by “the rare and distinctive tobiyaki spots” seen in the hitatsura style of Japanese swordsmithing.

The dials are “handcrafted piece by piece by female craftsmen in Kyoto” a city with more than 1,000 years of experience in lacquerware, while a traditional “Koji” font has been used for the indices.

It’s almost certainly no coincidence that Tamahagane steel is associated with bringing good luck and and that it is known for “turning negative environments and emotions into positive outcomes.”

Kurono was conceived by Hajime Asaoka as a way of offering a more accessible entry point to his watchmaking but, as with all independent watchmakers producing in limited numbers, his work has become caught up in the resale market.

Kurono will print the exterior of the Grand:Hagane’s packaging with a serial number and the buyer’s name. The brand will also not be releasing the exact number of watches being produced and will not honor the warranty if the watch is “discovered on the resale market within the first six months,” which is certain to cool the market for flipping its watches. 

The Grand:Hagane, which will be produced in “an edition of hundreds,” will be available for pre-order from 1pm ET today with a price of $3,171 USD.

Elsewhere in watches, Richard Mille redesigns the winding rotor with its new Sports Mode.
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