Watches are a fashion staple. They complete any look, adding a layer of timeless sophistication. While we commonly think of watches as menswear-inspired accessories paired with blazers and button-downs, a show at the S/S21 Paris Fashion Week told a different story.
British couture house Ralph & Russo sent models down the runway clad not only in their typical elegant and sophisticated designs, but each also wore a watch from Swiss watchmaker Audemars Piguet’s New Royal Oak collection. The craftsmanship synonymous with couture that Ralph & Russo is so known for was translated to the design of each wristwatch. And what is cooler than contrasting elements of a traditionally menswear-inspired accessory with an ultra-feminine ensemble?
Inspired by haute couture itself, the lust-worthy collection includes the Royal Oak Self-Winding Models available in either stainless steel and/or 18-carat pink gold. The “Grande Tapisserie” dial’s guilloché design, a signature of the Royal Oak watches, requires knowledge possessed only by Audemars Piguet watchmakers. And speaking of femininity, they have made the watches for smaller wrists—34 mm, to be exact.
The Royal Oak Concept Flying Tourbillon watch is also getting a feminine reinterpretation. This style will be available in 18-carat pink or white gold, with a layered contemporary dial imposed on the case’s shimmering Frosted Gold finish—an ancient Florentine jewelry technique revisited and adapted by jewelry designer Carolina Bucci which is described as having a “diamond dust” effect.
“Our partnership with Ralph & Russo came together naturally,” explains François-Henry Bennahmias, chief executive officer of Audemars Piguet. “They represent talent at the highest level mixed with simplicity and authenticity. The fun part was when we actually realized that our watches had already been paired with their exceptional designs many times by clients in real life who didn’t need to wait for this partnership to match our two brands!”
“Beyond our personal affinity for the brand, we felt a strong connection and alignment through our mutual dedication to both uncompromising craftsmanship and the creation of wonderfully unique styles that withstand the test of time,” add Tamara Ralph, creative director, and Michael Russo, chief executive officer of Ralph & Russo.
We can’t wait to get our hands on one and think we would like a Ralph & Russo couture gown to match. A person can dream, right?
By Camille Freestone
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