For those who know legends in jewelry and watches, this story may come as no surprise. It is comprised of several renowned men in history and present day: First, there is Peter Carl Faberge — jeweler to the Russian Czars, creator of fantasy and wonder, inventor of the famed Faberge Eggs that open to reveal grand secrets within. His rich creations have spanned centuries, become sought-after by royalty, collectors and those in the know everywhere on Earth, and hold high places in museums around the world.
The jewelry company, Faberge, continues to create stunning masterpieces in honor of Faberge — using Earth’s greatest gemstones, diamonds and metals. Now, the company has introduced an all-new watch line to re-enter the world of timepieces, created by one of our time’s most storied watchmakers: Jean-Marc Wiederrecht.
I have known Jean-Marc for years … just how many, I am not sure. But I have followed his work time and again and have enjoyed many a great discussion with him about his views on time and tracking it. As founder of Agenhor, independent movement manufacture, Wiederrecht is a master at creating complex horological movements, especially retrogrades (wherein the hands move to a certain point – usually in an arc formation– and then jump back to their starting point to begin the journey again). Often, the retrograde is the time indication in the form of some beautiful symbol (a Fairy’s wand in the case of a watch developed for Van Cleef & Arpels), or a moving figure on the dial (also in the case of Van Cleef & Arpels). He has also created special timepieces for Hermes — such as the Time Suspended, which you can read about here, and other watches. In fact, he has worked with many a brand that is seeking artistry as well as technical mastery.
Thus, it comes as no surprise that he would join forces with the famed Faberge to create all-new wonders. Turning to his specialty — the retrograde indication — Jean-Marc has created two superb stars that stand out from the otherwise also pretty impressive new Faberge’ watch collection. The two leading pieces are the Lady Compliquee Peacock watch and the Lady Compliquee Winter. Each pays tribute to a special Faberge Egg in history and each is bedecked in gems and precious metals befitting of the name Faberge.
It is the Lady Compliquee Peacock watch that steals my heart most. It features a beautiful peacock sculpted in gold with resting tail feathers that open and fan out to display the beauty of a peacock in all its glory. The tail feathers in their open format display the minutes (in 15-minute intervals). The dial is crafted in gold and set with 57 tsavorites, 31 Paraiba tourmalines and 127 brilliant cut diamonds. The watch is inspired by the famous Peacock Egg, circa 1908. There is something very ethereal about this watch and — as the feathers unfurl — the watch captures the eyes and hearts of men and women alike.
The other stunner is the Lady Compliquee Winter watch, that is inspired by the 1913 Faberge Winter Egg. This watch is meant to emulate winter in Russia — with ice-inspired dial that is crafted in mother of pearl and features “cracks” for a realistic appeal. The ice is set against a blue guillcohe sky. The retrograde time is indicated by the blue lacquer fan that, like the Peacock, opens one spoke at a time to indicate the minutes. Both of these watches house the hand-wound caliber 6901 developed in house by Wiederrecht at Agenhor. The 38 mm watches are crafted in platinum and set with 54 brilliant cut diamonds on the bezel to round out the entire “package.”
Wiederrecht also helped to design the men’s timepieces — but we will save that for another time. Stay Tuned.