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BEST of the BEST 2014 | Style | Women's Watches | Design: Vacheron Constantin Métiers d’Art Florilège

  • James D. Malcolmson

Vacheron Constantin has a longer history of creating artisan-decorated watches than any other company in the modern era. Florilège is a trio of Métiers d’Art limited editions ($161,900 for the model shown) that demonstrates the house’s success at applying age-old arts to the adornment of women’s timepieces. The intricately ornamented dials represent adaptations of the botanical illustrations of Robert John Thornton, the English physician and botanist. The subtle hues of the enamel laid over the manufacturer’s in-house guilloche mimic Thornton’s own unusually vibrant use of color in his book The Temple of Flora, yielding enchanting results. Modern enamelists are just beginning to approximate the deep, multilayered tints achieved by their 19th-century predecessors, and this work by the artisans at Vacheron Constantin represents the state of the art. (877.701.1755, www.vacheron-constantin.com)

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