The latest watch from bespoke watchmakers and restorers Struthers London takes inspiration from a pair of vintage Beretta shotguns
Birmingham-based watchmakers Struthers London have created the Kullberg Edition, a men’s model that has been hand-engraved to resemble a vintage shotgun.
A buyer approached the company with pair of ornately engraved antique guns, and two years of consultation and development began.
The brand is made up of Rebecca and Craig Struthers, a husband and wife team who are an antiquarian horologist and master watchmaker respectively.
Based in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter, they can be commissioned for unique timepieces, or buyers have the option of customising existing Struthers designs.
Struthers London commissioned an independent gun engraver who replicated in miniature the acanthus scroll featured on the shotguns on the watch’s movement and dial.
The Struthers London Kullberg Edition: Victor Kullberg
For the Kullberg Edition, Struthers London sourced an antique movement dating from around 1880. It’s a rare English movement with free-sprung balance, fusee and power reserve by watchmaker Victor Kullberg, a Swede who settled in London after the Great Exhibition in 1851.
For Craig Struthers, the movement’s historical significance was important: ‘I did find myself regularly wondering what Victor Kullberg would have made of this watch. There is so much history in this movement, from being created by one of the most famous watchmakers in London and being retailed to a high-ranking member of the British military, to ending up being scrapped for its gold case and having a near miss with destruction.’
‘In my eyes it’s a mark of respect to a watchmaker who inspires me. I can’t undo the past and restore this watch to its original case and find its missing parts, but I can give it another life.’
Rebecca and Craig referred to a complete model of the same movement in the British Museum as they made their own modifications and recreated missing parts. Helpfully, all the original parts have been saved and stored in a hidden compartment in the watch’s case.
This being a bespoke watch, anything goes – that includes the 50mm size (this is the largest watch Struthers London has ever made) and the unusual left-hand wind and onion crown.
The creation of the Kullberg Edition has had a lasting impact on the company. Following their success in recreating so much of Kullberg’s movement, the Struthers began working on their first in-house calibre, Project 248, due to be launched next year.