Katerina’s Pick: The Best Jewellery Watches at Salon QP


The eighth edition of the yearly watch expo Salon QP has taken place at London’s Saatchi Gallery, and it’s fair to say that this year the range of brands was more varied than ever before. There were some ancient, world-famous Swiss houses as well as some newcomers to the world of watchmaking.

Independent brands from nine European countries presented their top collections and new releases at the three day exhibition. Bovet, Jacquet Droz, A.Lange & Söhne, Vacheron Constantin and Van’t Hoff all shared their expertise in creating highly decorated dials and watch mechanisms. In the separate Metieres D’Art room craftsmen from the exhibiting companies decorated watches in real time – any interested passer by could have a look at the fine detail of their work.



I stayed in the Metieres D’Art room for quite a while, studying a variety of ways in which the watches were embellished. At first I was taken by Vacheron Constantin’s model Elégance Sartoriale, which was created jointly with Vitale Barberis Canonico – the world’s oldest supplier of high quality fabrics. The watch faces were designed in the recognisable patterns you’d find in mens’ suits: tartans, zigzags or a Windsor check. But what looks at first sight like fabric is in fact a miniature painted enamel.


I was particularly stunned by the craftsmanship of Jacquet Droz’s enamel masters who can create drawings of almost any complexity on watch dials. The Geneva based company had arranged a workstation for one of the craftsmen next to their exhibition stand who carefully painted new watch dials in front of everyone’s eyes.


Гравировщик A. Lange & Söhne наносит гравировку

A. Lange & Sohne Engraver Creating Piece of Watch

Элементы механизма часов A. Lange & Söhne с нанесенной вручную гравировкой



A. Lange & Shone Individual Hand Engraved Watch Parts


‘High art’ watches aren’t only decorated on the outside. Admirers of watches from the German maker A.Lange&Söhne would know this well. There are only five expert craftsmen who do the intricate engraving on the movements by hand – and you can tell by looking at the finished product which one of them decorated it.

Further on watch from Chopard’s collection L’Heure du Diamant glistened from display. Its pave set diamonds exemplified high craft of gem setting. The stones on the oval watch face were placed so close together that the metal beneath was practically invisible – something many watchmakers and jewellers attempt to do.


Geneva watchmaker I liked the most was the one I came across last. The name Van’t Hoff is comparatively new, but its founder Dick Steenman is well known in the watch world. He’s been creating original models for a number renown brands for years, but now he’s decided to make his own timepieces under his mother’s name. Dick is a virtuoso of various highly intricate techniques of watchmaking, and is always experimenting with new ways of decorating timepieces. That’s obvious in his Zodiac models – which incorporate miniature sculptures behind the glass of the watches’ dials, and flowers cut from mother of pearl that embellish Edelweiss collection pieces.

Jewellery watches weren’t only on display in the Metiers D’Art room – so in my search for the best I went around the whole exhibition and chose ten which really stood out to me.


Эмали Jacquet Droz, готовые для росписи циферблатов

Jaquet Droz Enamel for Hand Painting Watches


Расписанный циферблат Jacquet Droz

Jaquet Droz Hand Painted Enamel Dial


Vant Hoff

Van’t Hoff Diamond Watch from Arabesque Collection


Van

Van’t Hoff ‘Time of the Tiger’ Watch from Asian Zodiac Collection


Vacheron Constantin

Vacheron Constantin Métiers D’art Elégance Sartoriale Watch with Tartan Pattern


Montblanc


Montblanc Heritage Chronometrie Exotourbillon Minute Chronograph Watch


Jaquet Droz Watch Petite Heure Minute Relief Seasons Collection

Jaquet Droz Watch from Petite Heure Minute Relief Seasons Collection, Hand Painted and set with Diamonds


H. Moser & Cie Heritage Tourbillon Skeleton Watch

H. Moser & Cie Heritage Tourbillon Skeleton Watch Engraved Enamel Studded with Diamonds


H. Moser & Cie Open Mouvement Heritage Tourbillon Skeleton Watch

H. Moser & Cie, Open Movement, Heritage Tourbillon Skeleton Watch Engraved Enamel Studded with Diamonds


Girard Perregaux Cats Eye, Coloured Eventurina Ladies Watch.

Girard Perregaux Cats Eye Watch in 18k Rose with Coloured Aventurine Dial surrounded by Diamonds


Charles Odin Pansy with Pearl.

Charles Odin Pansy with Pearl Watch in 18k Rose Gold with Fresh Water Pearls and Diamonds


deWitt

De Witt Watch from The Golden Afternoon Collection set with Diamonds


Chopard

Chopard L’heure Du Diamant Large Oval Watch