Rolex Datejust Ref. 1601

This Rolex began life as a two-tone sport watch in the mid 1960s and represents one of the bolder and more dramatic Cloister projects. We began with an all-original but well-worn watch, and our first task was a full mechanical restoration of the piece. Once completed, we began the design process, which included mixing a bespoke color for the dial. The result was achieved by beginning with “stop sign” red and then adding a touch of blue paint to create a slightly cooler hue.

The dial was sent to Bavaria to be refinished in the new color along with the original calendar disc, which was refinished in an inverse style (with the background matching the new, black text of the dial, and the lettering matching the red hue of the overall scheme.

As the dial was being refinished, we also ordered a bespoke sapphire exhibition case back. With the watch disassembled, we sent the case, bracelet, and new exhibition back to North Carolina where all metal was PVD coated in a matte grey finish.

The end result is a wristwatch which maintains its original character but bears fully the marks of its new owner.