Audemars Piguet presents a new design in its women’s Royal Oak collection at this year’s Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH).
The Royal Oak Frosted Gold, created to mark the 40th anniversary of the brand’s women’s Royal Oak watches, is designed by Carolina Bucci, a Florentine jewellery designer.
When the first Royal Oak was designed in 1972, there was no specially made version for women until 1976, after Jacqueline Dimier joined the AP family as a designer in 1975. Her first contribution to the maison was to re-interpret the Royal Oak and create a women’s version. She designed it in such a way that the timepiece’s unique aesthetics and strong character could be retained while infusing a sense of lightness and femininity.
Bucci’s independent aesthetics and style stand out in the Royal Oak Frosted Gold – right on the bezel and on the straps. Gone are the clean, straight surfaces. Instead, they have been replaced with what looks like frost or even glitter.
Did AP glue use glitter appliqué on the straps? No. What you are seeing is – on very basic terms – a trick of the eye.
The gold used in the bezel and straps are continuously beaten using a tool with a diamond tip to create tiny indentations that catch the light in such a way that it looks like a glittering surface.
This Florentine finishing technique, which Bucci frequently uses in her own smaller jewellery pieces, had to be evolved in a way to make it suitable to be used on a larger surface. And thus commenced months of trial and error before both Bucci and the Audemars Piguet team were satisfied that they had found the perfect amount of sparkle. The effect is elegant and luxurious.
“By treating the finish of the gold with a Florentine effect, you have added nothing to the watch, nor subtracted anything – [you have] just altered the surface of the gold to make it sparkle when catching the light. In doing so, the watch becomes something entirely fresh and confident,” Bucci says.
The Royal Oak Frosted Gold is available in two sizes, 33mm and 37mm, in either pink gold or white gold. The 33mm features the quartz calibre 2713. The 37mm version features the self-winding manufacture calibre 3120, which comes with approximately 60 hours of power reserve and beats at 21,600 vibrations per hour.