This year’s array of colourful jewels is proving that the bread-and-butter diamond-and-watch combination needs some shaking up. Such rainbow-hued timepieces arguably take more time and effort to assemble, as finding perfectly matching shades in just the right size is a laborious task all on its own.
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01: HUBLOT BIG BANG UNICO SAPPHIRE RAINBOW
As you can see, Hublot didn’t stop at coloured sapphire crystal cases. This edition of the Big Bang Unico Sapphire has an 18K white gold bezel set with 48 baguette-cut sapphires, rubies, topazes and tsavorites. It adds a playful touch to the automatic flyback chronograph provided by the HUB 1242 Unico movement. If you can tear your eyes away from the colourful display, you’ll be able to view the column wheel and double clutch through the dial.
02: JAEGER-LECOULTRE RENDEZ-VOUS CELESTIAL
Many of you would already be familiar with the Rendez-Vous Celestial, the astronomy-themed ladies’ complication that carries a rotating disc showing the position of the constellations at any given time. A new variation joins the family in 2017, and is inspired by the Northern Lights. To capture the phenomenon’s ethereal beauty, the lapis lazuli dial has been hand-painted and the bezel set with a gradation of purple, pink and blue sapphires and diamonds.
03: H. MOSER & CIE SWISS ALP WATCH ON THE ROCKS
The original Swiss Alp Watch was H.Moser’s tongue-in-cheek jab at the Apple Watch, taking on the latter’s shape, dimensions and even marketing video, and filling it with hand-assembled Swiss goodness. The jewellery edition is less familiar, but just as cheeky. It asks the wearer to imagine a screen where every pixel is a sapphire, and delivers on that image with 232 baguette-cut sapphires on the dial, and baguette-cut diamonds on the bezel. Unlike the Apple Watch, this one can keep going for four days, and is “fully rechargeable by hand”.
04: CHOPARD HAPPY OCEAN
A natural extension of the Happy Sport range, Chopard’s Happy Ocean watches are dive watches with a touch of joy. The freely moving diamonds characteristic of the Happy watches are still present, but in a case that can withstand depths of 300m. The jewellery editions of the dive watches use diamonds, sapphires and either rubies or blue topazes to colour the two-toned bezels. The navy blue mother-of-pearl dial is matched with an alligator strap, but an additional Nato strap is provided.
05: ROLEX OYSTER PERPETUAL YACHT-MASTER 40
It seems almost unthinkable that one of the most respected and sought-after sports watches would get the Tutti Frutti treatment, but it’s an aesthetic shift that works surprisingly well. The rotating bezel is impeccably set with 32 sapphires, eight tsavorites and a single diamond at 12 o’clock, the bright colours pairing beautifully with the glossy black dial and Everose gold case. It’s still the reliable automatic Calibre 3135 underneath, with water resistance of 100m.