Here’s a look at two watch brands that celebrate the skills and savoir faire of their talented craftsmen
The colours of nature
Bright colours dominate the Arceau watch by Hermès in the form of a miniature enamel and silk thread toucan. Using the 1978 timepiece design by Henri d’Origny, this new iteration comes alive with its diamond-set round case and asymmetrical stirrup-shaped lugs that highlights the brightly coloured toucan. Chosen for its vibrant design, the Amazonian bird is composed of 500 individually assembled multicoloured silk threads that highlight the in- tensity of the colour and is brought to life by a full week of fine craftsmanship. The unique and exclusive Hermès silk thread technique was inspired by a kimono weaving workshop in Japan.
Here’s a closer look:
Manufacture Hermès H1912 movement
Mechanical self-winding, crafted in Switzerland Diameter: 23.30 mm Thickness: 3.9 mm
Power reserve: 50 hours
Frequency: 28,800 vibrations per hour / 4 Hz
Functions: Hours, minutes
Decoration: Circular-grained and snailed baseplate,
oscillating weight and bridges adorned with a sprinkling of Hs
Shape / size: round, 38 mm in diameter
Material: white gold, bezel set with 82 diamonds Glass: anti-reflective sapphire crystal and case-back Water resistance: 3 bar
Enamelled miniature and silk threads on a white gold base
Zanzibar blue calfskin
Lessons from the past
This year, Girard-Perregaux turns 230 years old and the gift the manufacturer wants to share is the revisiting of its iconic models and releasing a number of new creations. But first a lesson in history: The Maison began in 1791 when Jean-François Bautte, at 19, produced his first pocket watch. That was overshadowed when Constant Girard married Marie Perregaux in 1854, resulting in the birth of one of the greatest names in watchmaking.
In 1791, an English clergyman, William Gregor, discovered a black sand called menachanite in Cornwall. He analysed it and concluded that it contained oxides of iron and an unknown metal. This metal was subsequently identified as titanium and today it is widely used, not only in watchmaking but also in the fields of aerospace, medicine and motorsport.
By combining the two stories of Girard-Perregaux and William Gregor the Laureato Absolute Ti 230 was born. Girard-Perregaux uses Grade 5 titanium as it is strong, corrosion-resistant, lightweight and hypoallergenic. Today, Girard-Perregaux reveals the Laureato Absolute Ti 230 in a 44mm lightly sand-blasted case that encompasses polished facets, providing a beautiful gleam and subtle contrast. Successfully combining both types of finish proves more demanding, however, as Girard-Perregaux has repeatedly shown, it never shies from a challenge.
The dial is of a sandwich-type construction, comprising an upper layer, perforated with numerous openings, sat upon a lower layer. The apertures in the upper layer afford partial sight of the lower layer, presented in grey. By adopting this design approach, the apertures form recessed luminescent baton-type indexes, wonderfully playing with depths, thereby heightening the overall appearance of the dial.
Beating at the heart of the Laureato Absolute Ti 230 is a self-winding Manufacture movement, the Calibre GP03300-1060. It contains 218 components, all produced to Girard-Perregaux’s exacting standards.
Here’s a closer look:
Laureato Absolute Ti 230
Reference: 81070-21-001-FB6A (grey dial) Reference: 81070-21-002-FB6A (blue dial) World
Material: Grade 5 titanium
Glass: sapphire anti-reflective
Case-back: secured by six screws, engraved Laureato Absolute logo
Dial 1: blue, cut out ‘baton’ type indexes with luminescent material
Dial 2: grey, cut out ‘baton’ type indexes with luminescent material
Hands: ‘baton’ type with luminescent material
Water resistance: 300m (30 ATM)
Reference: GP03300-1060 Self-winding mechanical movement
Diameter: 25.95 mm
Height: 3.36 mm
Frequency: 28,800 vibrations per hour /4Hz
Number of components: 218
Number of jewels: 27
Power reserve: min. 46 hours
Functions: Hours, minutes, central seconds, date
Material: blue rubber injected with titanium, fabric effect and grey stitching
Material: grey rubber injected with titanium, fabric effect and grey stitching
Buckle: titanium, folding clasp with micro-adjustment system