the top four only watch lots that have collectors buzzing
Only Watch

The Top Four Only Watch Lots That Have Collectors Buzzing

Ever since the lots for the 10th Edition of Only Watch were revealed, the watch community has been held captive by the beauty of these dazzling timepieces.

By Henri Lee

Marking its 10th edition, this latest collection of Only Watch lots has ignited creativity, fostered collaborations, and stirred excitement among watch collectors and enthusiasts everywhere. So, we decided to scour various sources, including Instagram, watch-news websites, watch forums, WhatsApp groups, and even a few in-person gatherings, to pinpoint the standout favorites.

Here, we present four exceptional watches that are top-of-mind for many collectors.

Lot 28: The Upside Down Blue Feather by Ludovic Ballouard x Brittany Nicole Cox

First released in 2015, the Upside Down by the Geneva-based brand Ludovic Ballouard is a grail watch for many collectors, especially those who favor independent watchmaking. Not least of the many reasons why is that the “standard” model features a novel time display and is powered by an ingeniously designed movement to make it possible. Moreover, the Upside Down has a long waitlist due to its low production volume.

A guilloché artist based in the USA and one of few independent female clock- and watchmakers in the industry, Brittany Nicole Cox is highly skilled at engine-turned, hand-done guilloché decoration and opened her Seattle-based workshop Memoria Technica in 2015.

After meeting met due to their participation in the documentary Making Time (2022), Ballouard invited Cox to collaborate on this special Only Watch creation. Unsurprisingly, the watch community has responded with glowing comments for this timepiece, saying things like: “Wow! So impressive,” “Lovely,” “My top 3,” “Very cool guilloché pattern,” “Beautifully done,” “Amazing work,” and “The guilloché lines up perfectly with the Upside Down complication.”

Cox, inspired by the Emily Dickinson poem “Hope is the Thing with Feathers,” designed and handmade the dial. The soaring birds denote optimism, resilience, and perseverance, while their blue feathers also symbolize giving back.

What a wonderful timepiece by two great artists supporting Only Watch! No wonder this timepiece has garnered such strong admiration from watch collectors.

Lot 10: The Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Marble by Bulgari

When the Only Watch lots were unveiled in late June, renowned collector John Goldberger singled out just one on his IG page: Bulgari’s Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Marble.

Other watch lovers also chimed in: “The marble Octo is absolutely nuts,” “I want to wear that Bulgari so badly,” “Insanely cool,” “Halo piece for the brand - the materials are bonkers,” “Great execution,” “I wanna try it on,” “Seriously impressive,” “Bulgari taking huge steps in watchmaking yearly,” and “Best one hands down.”

The “regular” Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Automatic, which came out in 2018, still holds the record for the thinnest manual winding tourbillon movement at just 1.95mm thick with 253 parts (plus, it has a 52-hour power reserve and beats at 3Hz).

The special Only Watch edition is wrapped in green marble over the DLC titanium case. The stone layer is a mere 0.5mm thick – likely another record. Moreover, if you include the case and bracelet, there are 110 total facets.

Many collectors have fallen for the Octo Finissimo’s modern aesthetics and cutting-edge construction. This special marble piece will undoubtedly attract heated bidding at the Only Watch auction.

Lot 41: The Origine Only Watch Edition by Sylvain Pinaud

Following the path of many top watchmakers, Sylvain Pinaud started out restoring vintage timepieces before presenting his Origine calibre in March 2021. It took three years of R&D, but this elegant, timeless three-hander features a horizontal, asymmetrical dial layout with a large chronometric balance at 6 o’clock, which won it the “Horological Revelation” award at GPHG 2022.

Now a rising star in independent watchmaking with many enthusiastic fans, Pinaud has given the Origine Only Watch Edition a unique new aesthetic using a light blue and guilloché two-tone dial. And considering the “typical” Origine close to unobtainable, this unique piece will be even more sought after by collectors.

Hence, some of its glowing praise: “What a beautiful variation of the Origine,” “Favorite,” “Beautiful shade of blue,” “A sublime piece,” “The standout for me,” “Gorgeous. Reminds me of Gauthier,” “Holy mother of...I will take one,” and “A killer piece.”

Lot 03: The AdC30 Only Watch by Atelier de Chronométrie

Like the GPHG, the Only Watch auctions provide young watchmakers with the opportunity to showcase their talents on one of the industry’s biggest stages and for indie brand collectors to discover future stars. So, when a seasoned collector I know pointed me to Atelier de Chronométrie, which is participating in Only Watch for the second time, I sat up and took notice.

Founded in Barcelona in 2014, Atelier de Chronométrie is a small team led by Santiago Martínez pursuing fine finishing and 1930s-40s aesthetic vibes. In 2021, the atelier created a time-only AdC21 in the brand’s Only Watch debut.

This year brings a giant leap with the AdC30 Only Watch, which features a new calibre, a new case, and a new dial.

First, the Calibre 284 is an in-house movement with special hand-done frosting (done just for Only Watch). Next, the two-tone sandwich dial was all done in-house and features 18K rose gold leaf-shaped hands and an engine-turned small seconds sub-dial with a blued steel leaf-shaped hand. Finally, the 37mm round 18K gray gold case with its stepped lugs was also made by hand. It’s a marvelous creation inside and out.


In summary, we have three marvelous and refreshing creations from the independent watchmakers Sylvain Pinaud, Atelier de Chronométrie, and Ludovic Ballouard (in collaboration with Brittany Nicole Cox) and an incredible watch from Bulgari.

So, while there are many more fascinating timepieces from the 10th Edition of Only Watch that have captivated watch lovers, article space is limited. That said, don't despair! We have much more Only Watch lot coverage heading your way before the auction on Friday, May 10th.

For more information about the ongoing Only Watch world tour and upcoming auction, please visit the Only Watch website.

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