The Métiers d’Art Fabuleux Ornements watches invite women to rediscover the beauty of the ornaments of the world, beating to the rhythm of a precious and technical watch calibre. China and its ancient embroideries, India and its colourfully illustrated manuscripts, the Ottoman empire and its architecture, France and its lacework: all are sources of inspiration conveying their art through gossamer-light compositions exalted by the artisans of the Manufacture. Guillochage, Grand Feu enamel, diamonds, pearls and mother-of-pearl, as well as engraving, glyptics and gemstone cloisonné effects: traditional arts at the crossroads between various cultures spring to life, in step with the oscillations of an exquisitely airy hand-engraved calibre. Lights on the Chinese embroidery piece.
Crafted in pink gold according to the cloisonné technique, the dial is carpeted with flowers in rubies, cuprites and garnets. Like the silk thread Chinese embroideries embellished with precious fabrics, the graceful elegance of the stones cut and sculpted according to the glyptic art are adorned with finely engraved gold leaves and pistils. Concern for detail taken to extremes, as epitomised in the veins of the plants and the rounded shape of the petals, endow this ornamentation with a fascinating depth effect. The particularly delicate ruby engraving is a true challenge.
The pink opals are individually cut and lapped to form a tapestry of stones on a dial prepared for this purpose with barely 0.5 mm thin white gold partitions. The impressive finesse of the work accomplished by the master lapidaries and engravers pays a vibrant tribute to the traditional art of embroidery exercised for millennia in China.
In the field of decoration, the openworking of the ultra-slim Calibre 1003 in 18K gold – a mere 1.64 mm thin – transform the calibre into an incredible lacework of engraved wheel trains. The feat consists in withdrawing a maximum of material without affecting the vital parts that ensure the smooth running of the watch. Setting the final touch to the work, all the bridges are hand-drawn with a file, while every single part is patiently hand-chamfered, decorated and fashioned in traditional manner to form an ideally feather-light composition. The finesse of the front-facing décor is precise to the nearest tenth of a millimetre, while on the back Vacheron Constantin has opted for an exclusively chamfered and hand-drawn finish.