This diamond-studded skeleton watch is next-level wrist candy for women
Franck Muller’s Vanguard Rose Skeleton watch costs a pretty penny – but that’s not stopping us from admiring its intricate design and artisanal assembly. CNA Lifestyle tells you what goes into making this perfect statement piece.
In partnership with Franck Muller.
If you’re on the lookout to upgrade your trusty go-to statement watch, here is a luxury timepiece worth looking at. First, the eye-catching design, with its rose motif complemented with sparkling diamonds. Next, its intricately crafted skeleton dial – the work of an assembly of skilled artisans.
The result is the elegant Franck Muller Vanguard Rose Skeleton watch.
You may know of the award-winning brand as an acclaimed independent watch company. It is also known for its highly exclusive technical complications, many of which are innovated in-house at its headquarters in Genthod, Geneva – which watch lovers endearingly call Watchland.
The latest addition to the Swiss luxury watch marque’s lineup, the Vanguard Rose Skeleton, which costs from S$60,700, once again showcases the brand’s dedication to breaking the boundaries of high watchmaking in every aspect of its design.
Here are five things to know about the Vanguard Rose Skeleton – and why it’s such a dream watch to own.
THE ROSE SKELETON IS INTEGRAL TO THE MECHANISM
The lovely skeleton of roses and leaves that appear to float on the front and back of the dial are a visual feast, giving you every opportunity to admire the technical movements under the surface.
But did you know Franck Muller’s head of design Jean-Loup Glenat designed this skeleton to have a functional purpose as well?
Acting as bridges and plates, the rose petals aren’t just for show. They serve to enhance the structural integrity of the movement. If you’re into technical watch specs, it refers to the brand’s exclusive in-house manual winding 1540 VS15 calibre movement, which has a power reserve of four days.
Extra special TLC was given to the finishing of each of the 156 components so that the inner workings of the watch are displayed to the best effect – a carefully thought through balance of design and function.
SPECIALIST ARTISANS ARE NEEDED TO CREATE THE SKELETON
The creation of the rose skeleton dial requires a multi-step series of artisanal treatments, each of which involves a specialised craftsman.
For example, the outline of the roses and leaves is carefully hand-cut by an expert artisan in a process called chamfering, to add shine, contours and a smooth, flawless finish to the dial.
Even the tiniest components are treated with multiple steps. For instance, chamfering and mirror polishing is done on the regulator (the component that helps the watch keep accurate time) and the written engraving is given a 24K gold finish.
The watch, which comes in seven colourways, including red, white, pink and this season’s trending lavender, also features different coloured dials.
Each dial has its own visual blueprint and the artisan uses a blend of enamel varnishes to achieve the desired shades and tones. This intricate process requires a calm and steady hand as once the artisan starts painting, there can be no mistakes.
AT LEAST 3.55 CARATS WORTH OF DIAMONDS
Or 415 of them, to be exact, for the smaller case (the Vanguard Rose is also available in a larger case), and liberally sprinkled on both the case and dial, including the underside of the case, like a secret that only the owner is aware of.
The elegant pave setting of the diamonds on the dial and case are executed by a master gem setter, who handles diamonds so tiny that he needs to hand set each stone under a microscope.
In particular, the precision setting of the diamonds on the petals, which requires the gem setter to constantly adapt to the constraints of volume and shape, is a showcase of the artisan’s dexterity and skill.
THE SPORTY YET FEMININE CASE
Take a moment to appreciate the ergonomic curved case, which fits ultra comfortably on the wrist. This ingenious aesthetic is a hallmark of Franck Muller’s signature Vanguard case and it also means that the dial itself is subtly curved, which makes the work done on it even more complicated.
Made in 18K rose or white gold and studded with diamonds, the hand-polished case also features integrated coloured inserts on both sides of the case, to enhance the visual effect of the watch’s sleek curvature.
These integrated straps also add an element of sportiness to the watch to balance out the femininity of the diamonds and roses, resulting in a versatile timepiece that would look at home whether paired with evening attire or athleisure.
THERE’S MORE TO THE ALLIGATOR STRAP THAN YOU MIGHT FIRST NOTICE
Naturally, expect nothing less than the finest alligator straps precisely cut to showcase the iconic scale pattern of the reptile. The underside of the straps also features a hand-sewn rubber lining to increase the durability of the leather.
To create a seamless connection between the straps and the inserts on the case, the strap is artistically integrated into the case via two unseen screws. Moulded to perfection, this blend of alligator and rubber combines gracefully with the Vanguard case.
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