Some of them are very rare, but they’re typically all well-done for exactly what they are. A luxury fashion dive watch is more or less a designer style diver from among the major fashion brands. I’m not certain who made this notion appealing the contemporary sense, but credit can visit Chanel for essentially taking the theme of the Rolex Submariner and making an all ceramic watch that looks sexy and sporty at precisely the exact same time.Chaumet‘s offering in this arena is the Class One range. Compared to some of the additional high-end style houses the Chaumet Class One has a wide assortment of options and styles. In addition to three-hand, GMT, and chronograph models, the Class One has been provided in a large assortment of appearances and sizes (for men and women). For me the best model is that the Class One XXL that is 45mm wide and sold in steel and titanium, titanium, or in rose gold. This size has got the GMT and Chronograph variant, and I think they are entertaining looking, sporty sailors which will appeal to people who want something somewhat different – at least in the US. Chaumet is a brand not sold in the US – so as far as I know using a Chaumet could be much more prevalent in other parts of the world like France or Japan. I believe the very first time I saw Chaumet watches in individual was in London at their store within a store at Harrods.Being able to receive one of those abroad and wear them at the US has its own advantages. Especially when people ask you about the watch and you comment on how “oh, these aren’t available from the States.” The dial is very easy to read, especially with the thick lume-coated hands on.
Pistils, delicate foliage, colourful petals… Like the fashion designers that have raised floral print to absolute must-have status this season, watchmakers are drawing on the language of flowers to attract a feminine clientele as preoccupied with the aesthetic refinement of their watch as they are with the mechanical movement beating at its heart. Even certain names one would never have expected to see exploring a theme of this kind, such as Richard Mille and his amazing Tourbillon Fleur RM19-02, have well and truly decided to explore the floral kingdom.
Over the seasons, some flowers have come to epitomise certain brands. Chanel’s standout Camélia watch obviously comes to mind. Gabrielle’s favourite flower that she perpetually reinvented through subtle, precious jewellery collections, the camellia is a graceful motif that is transformed beneath the magic nimble fingers of the Chanel artisans. Whether embroidered with silk thread using the ‘needle painting’ technique, adorned with a diamond and fine pearl brocade or lit up by a delicate mother-of-pearl inlay, the camellia décor on the Mademoiselle Privé watch offers multiple demonstrations of rare skills – some of them unique in watchmaking. In the mother-of-pearl inlay version, a veritable sculpture on mother-of-pearl consisting of a dozen elements comes alive on a dial paved with diamonds framed by a 37.5 mm diamond-set white gold case.
At Chaumet, the hydrangea is the focus of an entire collection that captures the essence of this flower with its thousand petals so as to render its graceful beauty. Why the hydrangea? Quite simply in tribute to the Empress Josephine, one of the very first clients of the Maison and who nurtured a boundless passion for the magic of gardens. Since its creation, the Hortensia collection has offered exquisite variations that irrefutably display the level of expertise cultivated by the brand’s craftsmen. The Hortensia Montre Précieuse illustrates the theme with an exceptionally elegant engraving on mother-of-pearl positioned in the centre of the 31 mm white gold case.
Another emblematic flower is the rose – of which Piaget proposed three versions incorporating as many skills at the most recent SIHH. At the heart of the elegant Altiplano, the queen of flowers appears transfigured in strictly limited series showcasing embroidery, hard stone marquetry and grand feu enamel techniques.
Finally, Vacheron Constantin has chosen… not to choose a specific favourite among a broad floral repertoire. With the second variation of its Métiers d’Art Florilège collection, the watchmaking Maison presents veritable miniature works of art that highlight one of the most remarkable works of botanical illustration ever published. Drawing on The Temple of Flora, authored by Robert John Thornton in 1799, Vacheron Constantin has selected three new flowers including an elegant tulip. Combining guillochage, grand feu enamel and setting, the bloom provides a stunning backdrop for the passing of time. The play on colours and subtly varied materials induces a sense of wonderment at the beauty of this exquisite flower whose elegant finery conceals the excellence of the in-house mechanical hand-wound 4400 calibre. Reflecting the inescapable regularity of time, Vacheron Constantin’s tulip is an imperishable marvel. Like all the other flowers in the watchmaking garden, it never wilts and never fades…