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At Vacheron Constantin, “Haute Couture” Is Meant to Be Worn on the Wrist

By Lynette Kee

Égérie, the new horological muse of Vacheron Constantin
 
Égérie, the new horological muse of Vacheron Constantin

Vacheron Constantin has existed for 265 years as one of the oldest watch manufacturers in the world — from a time when watches were worn as pendants inside pockets. For women from the 19th century, watches then migrated from the pockets to the décolletage and later on the wrist, masking as accessories. The Swiss watchmaker has prided itself on its feminine creations of wristwatches as do its men’s counterpart. In retouching its heritage in ladies watches, Vacheron Constantin has added a new ladies-only dedicated collection to its fold. The name of the collection, Égérie, translates to “muse”, in which case, the brand drew inspiration from the many markers of feminine beauty. 

According to the brand, the Égérie was born from the conjunction of haute horlogerie and haute couture — two pinnacles of know-how from the watches and fashion realm. In a collection of five timepieces, all models — self-winding, moon phase, moon phase diamond-pavé (each in its own version of pink and white gold, except the diamond-pavé) — deftly blends high fashion elements with Vacheron Constantin’s finest skill in watchmaking to yield a distinctive high horology collection. The tapestry technique on the dial, for example, is reminiscent of the pleated fabric, resplendent under the light when reflecting the alternating flat and raised texture, while the watch is framed by 58 diamonds on the outer bezel, resembling slender braiding to accentuate the shape.

The making of the new Égérie collection.
The making of the new Égérie collection.

The key complication in this women’s timepiece is the off-centre subsidiary dial at two o’clock, where lies a spherical window for either a date or a moon phase. The moon phase diamond-pavé model has its dial showered with 510 diamonds resembling an intricate embroidery as the moon phase (made of mother-of-pearl inlay) offers a gaze into the moonlight. Worn on the wrist, the watch dances to the reflection of light, like a sparkly evening gown if characterised in fashion couture.

The Égérie self winding diamond-pavé model reflects the virtuosity of haute couture.
The Égérie self winding diamond-pavé model reflects the virtuosity of haute couture.

In respect of a woman’s desire for functionality and versatility, the new Égérie is also equipped with a quick-release strap to allow easy strap swap (for the white and rose gold models). In this latest collection, Vacheron Constantin has managed to translate the extreme execution of dress-making in high-end fashion into watchmaking. Unlike fashion couture, however, the Égérie collection is one that begs to be worn as an everyday accessory — its bold design meant to accentuate the outfit of the modern elegant woman.

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