Colorful butterflies have been a main theme on several new creations presented this year by the French luxury jewelry house Van Cleef & Arpels, but the most fabulous among them is the exceptional timepiece dubbed Lady Arpels Ronde des Papillons. This exquisite novelty was unveiled earlier this year at the Salon International De La Haute Horlogerie.
The newest ladies’ watch from the French manufacturer combines the artistic design with the impeccable technical features, thus showing the brand’s capacity for technical innovation.
Van Cleef & Arpels Lady Arpels Ronde Des Papillons is powered with the self-winding mechanical movement with a retrograde jumping hour, variable speed minutes and a patent-pending on-demand animation module. The extraordinary mechanism was developed exclusively for the Lady Arpels Ronde des Papillons watch. It is capable to store enough energy to keep the watch working for approximately 40 hours when fully wound.
The most stunning part of the watch is its splendid dial that features four fan-form dials. Three white gold clouds float on different levels in a hand-painted blue mother-of-pearl main dial. Three yellow, red and pink butterflies move around the dial to track the minutes, whilst a blue swallow at the bottom indicates the hours. For minute indication, each butterfly appears in turn among the clouds, and then disappears to make way for its heir. The butterfly embodies reincarnation and immortality, while the swallow is the symbol of good luck and happiness.
When the pusher at the 8 o’clock on the case is pressed, the butterflies flutter from the clouds to dance in the sky. After a 10 second flurry of mechanism, the butterfly “hands” return to indicate the correct time. This ballet where butterflies move at different speeds required special watchmaking expertise to be developed. An elliptical wheel inside the mechanism provides them to accelerate in a one-hour cycle and then to slow down again.
The story from the front side of the watch continues from the rear with the engraving of a swallow flying through the skies. A sapphire glass window shows the oscillating weight encrusted by three lacquered butterflies.
The Lady Arpels Ronde Des Papillons is housed in 18-karat white gold case which measures 38mm in diameter. The feminine case incorporates a diamond-set bezel and the crown which is also set with a sparkling diamond. The case is attached to a strap with the single-lug on both sides.