Jaeger-LeCoultre Celebrates Reverso’s 90th Anniversary With Flowering Masterpieces
The first question that comes to mind when you see the Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso One Precious Flowers watch is: how did they do that? Anyone familiar with the craft of dial enameling knows that the enamel starts out in liquid form, as a mixture of ground silica powder and water. Gravity dictates that until it is fired and hardened in a kiln, it is sure to pour out of place unless laid flat. Miraculously, Jaeger-LeCoultre craftsmen found a way to overcome gravity in order to make it happen. How they did it remains a company secret, but we can see the results on the Precious Flowers Reverso One watches.
“Our biggest challenge was to apply enamel to the curved case side, to create the effect that the flowers were wrapped around the case,” says Jaeger-Le Coultre design director Lionel Favre. “It was a very complex process to put a liquid solution onto a curved surface.”
The set of four watches was inspired by decorative jewels worn in the 1920s as well as a popular style of ladies’ handbags at the time. The first three bloom with blue, purple or pink Arum flowers that wrap around the case in full foliage. The enameled flowers are set against a background of black lacquer or diamonds and set with anywhere between 409 diamonds and 626 diamonds. On some, the entire background is snow-set with diamonds – an exacting technique that requires approximately one hour to set just five or six stones. The blue and purple versions are set with 626 diamonds totaling 1.98 carats – the gemsetting on these models took 95 hours each.
The dial of the White Lilly version took 40 hours to hand engrave. It is sculpted in relief, leaving raised outlines of the Lilly design in great detail. The leaves are enameled in a rich blue, with the stamens in light blue. To create the sky-blue background, tissue-fine wafers of mother-of-pearl were cut to the exact shape, and then inlaid. The rest of the case is set with 335 diamonds weighing 2.44 carats. All are limited to 10 pieces, and contain manually wound mechanical movements. All come with alligator straps in vivid colors. Flowers have a certain lore attached to them: pink Arums are a symbol of admiration and appreciation, blue Arums represent grace and refinement, and white Lillies symbolize purity and devotion.
Published at Sun, 11 Apr 2021 22:25:27 +0000