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Handcrafted Watches-&-Wonders-2022-luxury watches for women

6 Stunning Luxury Watches for Women

New delights from the world of horlogerie

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From flower-studded dials to mystery watches, these incredible works of horlogerie from some of the world’s most renowned watchmakers have transformed a style accessory into an art form.  Elevate your watch collection with these 6 exceptional luxury watches for women.

Piaget’s new watch delivers star-struck vision

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The magic of the night sky shimmers in the midnight-blue dial of Piaget’s Limelight Gala Aventurine watch. Named after the celebrity-studded soirees of the Piaget Society, this luxury watch for women is inspired by the pinnacle of Piaget’s creative period in the 1970s when the company released its iconic jewellery watches.

The dial is made with aventurine glass, dating to 17th century Murano, the famous glass-making quarter of Venice. Made with the addition of copper oxide, the glass appears to glimmer with stars in the night sky.

The watch’s white gold Milanese mesh bracelet is a masterpiece in its own right, requiring a level of craftsmanship comparable to an haute couture gown. It takes over 100 hours of work for eight Piaget artisans to create one bracelet. The process begins with a single gold thread, shaped in a spiral and woven to create a refined and flexible gold fabric. Each bracelet is made with 366 spirals and is finished with a sliding buckle.

A rare movement at the heart of Chopard’s new IMPERIALE watch

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Self-winding movements are rare in jewellery watches, and those with a horological complication are even rarer. Chopard, however, is no stranger to rarities. Its flying tourbillon movement, L.U.C Calibre 96.24-C, has several notches of exclusive features under its belt.

Launched in 2019 in a men’s version, the tourbillon is one of the few mechanisms to be chronometer-certified by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC) and awarded the prestigious Poinçon de Genève quality label. At only 3.30 mm thickness, the tourbillon ranks among the thinnest in contemporary watchmaking and is equipped with a stop-seconds function for unparalleled precision.

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The impressive movement gains a stunning new outfit in the latest addition to Chopard’s IMPERIALE collection. The IMPERIALE Flying Tourbillon (so named because the tourbillon doesn’t rest on an upper bridge) pays tribute to history’s great empires, with hands reminiscent of daggers and lugs inspired by antique columns. The 18-karat white gold case is set with diamonds whose sparkle is echoed by the glittering midnight-blue dial.

Beneath the aventurine glass, a lotus flower blossoms in mother-of-pearl marquetry, layered with diamond-paved petals. The flying tourbillon is nestled in the flower’s core, akin to a pistil, with petals masterfully weaving it into the botanical motif.

A signature mechanism unlocks Cartier’s enigmatic watch

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Cartier’s mystery clocks first made their appearance in 1912 as a collaboration between Louis Cartier and talented young watchmaker Maurice Couet. The clocks received their name from their unusual, enigmatic design in which the hands appear to float over the clock’s transparent body as if by magic, with no apparent connection to the movement. Couet got his inspiration from the clocks of the notorious illusionist Jean-Eugène Robert-Houdin.

The mystery lies in an ingenious set-up—the hands are attached not to the movement, but to two crystal discs fitted with serrated edges. Activated by the movement hidden inside the clock’s base, the discs turn the hands, making them appear weightless.

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The Masse Mystérieuse watch expands this concept by combining two of Cartier’s signature watchmaking techniques—the mystery movement and the skeletonized design. The watch’s patent-pending movement results from nearly eight years of work at the Cartier Manufacture, with seven prototypes developed before the calibre version was finalized.

The hands appear suspended inside the case, with a skeletonized rotor containing all of the moving components. The system is adapted from the automotive industry, ensuring the balance wheel maintains its position and the chronometer isn’t affected by gravity.

Blossoms mark the passage of time in Van Cleef & Arpels masterpiece

Watches-&-Wonders 2022

The Van Cleef & Arpels Poetry of Time collection is dedicated to the passage of time. The Lady Arpels Heures Florales Cerisier watch measures time with the help of flowers.

The notion of a “floral clock” is based on the work of renowned Swedish botanist Carl von Linné, whose 1751 book Philosophia Botanica presented the concept of a garden made up of flowers opening and closing at specific times.

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The idea was brought into a three-dimensional form by the masterful Van Cleef & Arpels watchmakers. The flower-studded dial presents time as a theatrical spectacle with the help of 12 corolla blossoms.

No fewer than 226 elements make up each blossom, assembled at the company’s watchmaking workshops in Geneva. Miniature petals and leaves, sculpted gold branches, and mother-of-pearl clouds are accented with white and yellow diamonds. The Cerisier’s 38 mm rose gold case envelops the red and pink sapphire corollas. An enamelled butterfly adorns the case’s engraved sapphire glass, revealing the movement of the guilloche gold.

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The watch’s technical artistry is made possible by a module developed by Van Cleef & Arpels craftspeople. In an intricate assembly process, each of the petals on the dial is connected to the watch’s mechanism. The sequence of opening and closing the flowers changes from hour to hour and day to day, turning it into a captivating visual.

Horses, punk, and exceptional watchmaking combine in Hermès pocket watch

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A penchant for the equestrian takes on an offbeat, futuristic vibe in the Hermès Arceau Pocket Cheval Punk watch, created in 1978 by Henri d’Origny. Set on stirrup-shaped lugs, the white gold case with openwork cover reveals an enamelled dial with a punk horse motif in white gold, featuring a crest, harness, and tattoo.

The original design was inspired by a men’s silk scarf by Japanese designer-illustrator Daiske Nomura. Normura, in turn, drew his inspiration from a figurine in the Emile Hermès collection: a thick-maned horse, shaped as a punk crest.

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Several complicated techniques and hundreds of hours of work create this unique design. The master engraver meticulously chisels the horse’s silhouetted profile before it’s painted in miniature enamel. A layer of champlevé enamel forms the crisscrossed gold dial, a labour-intensive method in which several layers of coloured glass powders are mixed with natural oils. They are then applied by the artisan into the engraved hollows, which are then dried and kiln-fired.

At the heart of the watch, the Hermès H1924 tourbillon minute repeater movement keeps the time precise. An alligator strap in blue completes the piece, highlighting its combination of artistry, craftsmanship, and style.

Patek Phillipe’s mesmerizing pocket watch shines in new exhibition

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For many years, watches were primarily admired as works of art. Intricately crafted and adorned by skilled artisans, nearly 60 of these remarkable treasures were part of Swiss watchmaker Patek Phillippe’s Rare Handcrafts 2022 exhibition in Geneva.

Among the most notable is an elegant Swan pocket watch with Old-World refinement. Symbolizing the lightness and grace of the Prince of Lake Geneva swan, the white gold piece is made with a case back in micro wood marquetry. With richly varying shades, textures, and grains of wood, the design echoes the swan’s smooth plumage, while the shape is a nod to the elongated curve of its neck.

A black enamel dial is set with white-gold Breguet numerals and hand-engraved hands, while a spessartine cabochon embellishes the crown. The watch rests on a handcrafted white gold stand with an obsidian base and is powered by a manually wound calibre 17” movement. This Swan watch is a true feat of imagination, design, and fine craftsmanship.

 

 

 

This story is from Magnifissance Issue 112

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