In 2016, the Le Brassus Manufacture honours the style and character of the female designers who have contributed to the Royal Oak legacy: from Jacqueline Dimier who reinterpreted Gérald Genta’s initial 1972 model and imagined the first Royal Oak for women in 1976, to Carolina Bucci today. The launch of the Royal Oak Frosted Gold enriches Audemars Piguet’s tradition of experimenting with jewellery techniques. The defining feature of the Royal Oak Frosted Gold resides in its shimmering sparkle, which in turn comes from a surface treatment process rooted in an ancient gold hammering technique, also called the Florentine technique. Carolina Bucci has reinterpreted this technique in jewellery design today while Audemars Piguet’s experts developed it into a horological craft suited to the unique case and bracelet construction of the Royal Oak.
The shimmering Florentine finish has been used in Carolina Bucci’s workshops for decades. By beating the gold with a diamond tipped tool, it creates tiny indentations on the surface that give a sparkle effect similar to that of precious stones, like diamond dust. For Audemars Piguet’s artisans, one of the great challenges was to apply this technique across the case and bracelet of the watch without altering the clean lines that define the Royal Oak’s signature.
To keep on breaking the rules and leading to a stunning result, Bucci’s Florentine craftsmen and Audemars Piguet’s manufacture took months of trial and error to alter the surface of the gold in such a way that it sparkles when catching the light, while retaining the softness and flexibility of the Royal Oak’s bracelet. It is a very delicate alchemy to operate: nothing is added, nothing is removed, but this exquisite timepiece is transformed.
Marking the 40th anniversary of a 1970s house icon, the launch of the Royal Oak Frosted Gold underlines Audemars Piguet’s dedication to an independent view, while celebrating Jacqueline Dimier’s initial creation. As one of the very few female watch designers of the modern era, Jacqueline Dimier shaped the nature of many Audemars Piguet timepieces for both men and women, establishing a lasting design language that still resonates in the Le Brassus Manufacture today.
It is a timely link to the house’s collaboration with Carolina Bucci today whose vision, although decades apart from Jacqueline Dimier’s, was to give the Royal Oak an appeal that captures the attention from a distance, injecting feminine sensibility while retaining the key design codes of the original piece. Today Audemars Piguet merges Jacqueline Dimier’s timeless design with Carolina Bucci’s contemporary approach, marking a dazzling link between modern horology and contemporary jewellery: The Royal Oak Frosted Gold, when a watch icon turns 40 years young!
The new Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Frosted Gold is featured in hammered 18-carat white or pink gold case, offering in two sizes; 33 and 37 mm. The frosting of this iconic watch is achieved by the ancient Florentine gold-hammering technique, admired with the magnificence of Royal Oak’s emblematic silver “Grande Tapisserie” dial that always make timepiece never goes out of style, together with white or pink gold applied hour-markers and Royal Oak hands, as well as a window-type date display at 3 o’clock. Also, catch the light at every angle with the precious frosted-effect throughout the strap in all four versions. The 33 mm version is powered by quartz movement while the self-winding movement houses in sized 37mm case that you can admire the inner workings of the calibre through the glareproofed sapphire crystal caseback.