Ever since Seiko decided to sell its Presage line internationally in 2016, watch enthusiasts the world over have been treated to a clutch of affordable-luxury mechanical gems which were hitherto only available in the Japanese domestic market. The latest limited edition features a stunning blue dial and is inspired by the night sky and the country’s fascination with the moon.

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The Presage Blue Enamel Limited Edition: SPB069 is encased in 40.5-mm-wide stainless steel, the case is typical of the ones used in the Presage line and features a mix of brushed and polished surfaces. It is fitted with a dual-curved sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating and a sapphire crystal caseback. The watch is 12.4 mm thick and has a water resistance of 100 meters.

The blue enamel dial and Roman numerals lend a classical touch

The rich blue enamel dial is the handiwork of enamel craftsman Mitsuru Yokozawa and his team, who made the white enamel dials seen in in other Presage models. Because the surface of a watch dial is so small and as it is viewed at such close distances, the depth and evenness of the enamel has to be exact. Since the viscosity of blue enamel is much higher than white, creating blue enamel dials can be tricky business. Yokozawa himself inspects every single dial before it is fitted into the watch.

White lacquer is used to draw the Roman numerals on the dial and also coat the hands of the watch. A railway track scale on the periphery of the dial lends a classical touch. The familiar crescent counterweight on the seconds hand is coated in gold color powder as a nod to Japan’s fascination with the moon. The crescent shape is also to be PVD coated on the sapphire case back.

The crescent moon on the counterweight of the seconds hand

During the Heian period (794-1185), Japan’s reverence for the moon’s beauty saw the creation of the Tsukimi ceremony wherein Japanese nobility would gather in the open air when the moon was at its height and recite poetry that extolled the beauty of the full moon. The Tsukimi ceremony is often accompanied by orchestral music, the eating of rice dumplings and drinking of sake. It is a tradition that has lasted until today and is still widely observed throughout Japan.

The watch is powered by the Caliber 6R15

The watch uses the 6R15 caliber with a 50 hour power reserve. A 3 Hz self-winding movement, it has 23 jewels and a hacking seconds function. The watch is fitted with a deep blue alligator leather strap with a three-fold clasp with push button release and is offered as a limited edition of 1,500 and will be available this month at select Seiko retail partners and worldwide in early 2018. Price? $1.100