A Watchmaking Tribute to Sartorialism
Vacheron Constantin celebrates sartorialism in a new masculine line dressed to the nines and bearing the Hallmark of Geneva. Thanks to cleverly mastered traditional decorative techniques, the Manufacture gives its own unique take on the classic masculine wardrobe. Guilloché and enamelling techniques offer an immersion into the rich treasures of the art of tailoring.
Guardians of time, guardians of style
Vacheron Constantin shares with the tailoring profession the discipline of an art passed on from generation to generation. Since 1755, the creations from the Maison testify to a relentless quest for aesthetic elegance. In their own field, tailors devote themselves to the same finely adjusted details that convey the stylish sophistication known as sartorialism.
The term relates to the refined masculine wardrobe as epitomised by the ageless men of the Hollywood golden age. More recently, icons of elegance personified the so-called sartorial style. These natural-born gentlemen assert their individuality and their charisma through their free-spirited manner of dress based on impeccably cut garments.
Today, a new generation of men with a taste for stylish apparel stride confidently along the streets of the world’s capitals, exuding an occasionally atypical aura of personal chic. Whether in Milan, Tokyo, Paris, London or New York, their choice of apparel is an anthem to suits crafted from fine materials and enhanced by combinations of colours embodying a blend of tradition and daring.
Good dress sense is generally backed by an interest in fine craftsmanship. Aficionados of elegance look for hand-made quality achieved using traditional methods and feel instinctively at home with the exclusive nature of bespoke tailoring.
Like any true artisan, an experienced apiéceur (piece-maker) spends dozens of hours on a tailor-made jacket. Thousands of stitches, dozens of materials, perfectly cut and fashioned by expert hands, are essential factors in ensuring an impeccable fit. Just as in Haute Horlogerie, fine tailoring is an art involving extreme refinement, carefully selected materials and ultra-precise movements, all governed by a determination to achieve a perfectly mastered aesthetic and technical balance.
An array of colourful fabrics clothing the dial
The Métiers d’Art Elégance Sartoriale comprises five models featuring a variety of patterns. The Prince of Wales check plays on superimposed squares connected by vertical and horizontal stripes, enhanced by a raspberry red coloured translucent enamel. The herringbone motif creates a subtly well-ordered and eminently sophisticated effect, accentuated by a lavender-toned enamel and its variously contrasting zigzag motif. The regularity and the geometry of the windowpane pattern are emphasised by a warm grey enamel. The slim vertical pin stripes pattern shimmer beneath a soft linen color. Finally, the tartan motif with its criss-crossing horizontal and vertical grooves is coated with a cerulean blue.
The Vacheron Constantin master artisans have devoted a lengthy period of research and repeated trials to achieving a finish resembling finely woven cloth in accordance with the sartorial spirit. The guillocheur has manually recreated the structure of the fabrics which is unprecedented in the watchmaking domain, notably by creating a finely gadrooned pattern around the rim of the dial, much like a hem. Incising these tiny grooves in thin gold plates called for hours of craftsmanship to make the most of light and depth effects by working with tenth of a millimetre precision. Working within the constraints imposed by the complexity of the guilloché motifs and the unpredictable nature of enamel, the enamelling artisan has then sought the exact shade, while being careful to maintain a transparent, shiny and smoothly uniform appearance.
Vacheron Constantin has further heightened the complexity of the task by adding a gold subdial offset at 3 o’clock with a tapestry-like motif which, depending on the versions, picks up Paisley type, floral or geometrical tie of pocket square patterns. The tapestry technique works like a pantograph. The motif is engraved using a finely adjusted dedicated graving tool, before being frosted and varnished. Its alternating hollowed and raised areas create an embroidery effect at the very heart of the enamelled surface. It is rimmed by a chapter ring swept over by two gold hands.
Ref. 1400U/000G-B215: Prince of Wales Check Pattern
Ref. 1400U/000R-B159: Herringbone Pattern
Ref. 1400U/000R-B216: Windowpane Pattern
Ref. 1400U/000R-B217: Pin Stripes Pattern
Ref. 1400U/000G-B218 Tartan Tattern
The case, in 18kt white or rose gold, measures 40mm x 8.2mm. It has a sapphire crystal and it is water resistant to 30 meters. The polished caseback leaves room for a personalised engraving, with an offset circular sapphire opening to view the movement.
Movement is the Swiss manual-wind Vacheron Constantin in-house caliber 1400 with 20 jewels, 28,800 vph and a power reserve of 40 hours. The flat surfaces are adorned withCôtes de Genève, the sharp edges are chamfered and hand-polished, as are the flat-headed screws. The movement measures 2.6mm in thickness and it bears the Hallmark of Geneva certification.
Prince of Wales Check Pattern Dial: Hand-guilloché “Prince of Wales Check” pattern under raspberry red-colored translucent Grand Feu enamel. Champagne-colored tapestry gold dial at 3 o’clock, hour circle in mother-of-pearl, black painted Roman numerals.
Herringbone Pattern Dial: Hand-guilloché “Herringbone” pattern under lavender-colored translucent Grand Feu enamel. Champagne-colored tapestry gold dial at 3 o’clock, hour circle in mother-of-pearl, black painted Roman numerals.
Windowpane Pattern Dial: Hand-guilloché “Windowpane” pattern under a grey translucent Grand Feu enamel. Champagne-colored tapestry gold dial at 3 o’clock, hour circle in mother-of-pearl, black painted Roman numerals.
Pin Stripes Pattern Dial: Hand-guilloché “Pin Stripes” pattern under linen-colored translucent Grand Feu enamel. Champagne-colored tapestry gold dial at 3 o’clock, hour circle in mother-of-pearl, black painted Roman numerals.
Tartan Pattern Dial: Hand-guilloché “Tartan” pattern under royal blue translucent Grand Feu enamel. Champagne-colored tapestry gold dial at 3 o’clock, hour circle in mother-of-pearl, black painted Roman numerals.
They come on a hand-stitched, saddle-finish, large square scales burgundy, dark brown, grey, brown or dark blue Mississippiensis alligator leather strap with an 18kt white or rose gold buckle.