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Vacheron Constantin  - The Egérie, revamped

Vacheron Constantin The Egérie, revamped

WorldTempus takes Vacheron Constantin’s newest ladies’ timepiece for a spin, seeing how the classic piece fares in the modern world.

Introduced earlier this year, Vacheron Constantin’s new Egérie collection is a complete revamp of the original models they presented back in 2003. They traded the original tonneau case with a round one for a more classic, less Art Deco appeal and put more emphasis on subtle details on the dial to anchor the Egérie’s relationship with haute couture and the finer things in life. At WorldTempus, I got to test the Egérie Moonphase this week for a more hands-on experience, seeing how the classic design fared in this contemporary world.

The new Egérie

To delve into the experience that was wearing the Egérie Moonphase, it’s important to note how Vacheron Constantin decided to update this ladies’ collection. The new round case aside, there are subtle changes that make this new iteration of the Egérie more contemporary—the crown, set with a delicate moonstone, has been moved to 1 o’clock instead of staying at the standard at 3 o’clock position, making it a lot more comfortable for daily wear. The Arabic numerals are now all around the dial (on the original, it was only 12 and 6 with the rest as indices) and in a more classic script; the hour, minute and seconds hands are also slenderer and gracefully sweep across the soft opaline dial. For an added element reminiscent of haute couture and tapestry, Vacheron Constantin developed a technique to create a pattern of pleats on the center “circle” of the dial. The pleated pattern continues on the outer ring of the dial except between 7 and 9 o’clock, where the Vacheron Constantin logo is printed in black. 

The Egérie, revamped

Egérie Moonphase © Joy Corthesy/WorldTempus

While the Egérie exists in high jewellery and self-winding versions, I was granted the opportunity to wear the model with a moonphase indicator at 2 o’clock. Unlike more conventional moonphase watches, the Egérie displays it off-centre, in a circle surrounded by 36 round-cut diamonds. The moon is made of 18K gold (pink or white, depending on the model) and peaks out flirtatiously from behind the mother-of-pearl clouds also lined with gold.

The Egérie, revamped

Egérie Moonphase © Joy Corthesy/WorldTempus

Following the placement of the crown, moonphase display and logo, you can see that the design is built diagonally on the dial—a very subtle approach to make the classic watch more dynamic, similar to the tilted design of the brand’s Historiques American 1921 (whose women’s version is also quite popular). Without those details, the Egérie would get lost in the shuffle of conventionally designed women’s watches. This execution definitely has a classic appeal but is recreated to be modern, a fresh take from a brand founded on traditional craftmanship.

The Egérie, revamped

Egérie Moonphase © Joy Corthesy/WorldTempus

An easy switch

Interchangeable straps have been an ongoing trend in the industry that’s grown more steadily in the last decade, making it easier than going into a boutique or certified retailer to change the strap for you. And as clients always looks for ways to customise, an easy way to do so is with different straps. 

The Egérie, revamped

Egérie Moonphase © Joy Corthesy/WorldTempus

But I’ve often found “easy-change” strap systems on watches to be difficult and fiddly, taking more time and effort than I’m willing to put in—maybe I’m just not particularly adept for most interchangeable strap systems, but I’ve rarely found one to actually be easy to use. The interchangeable strap system on the Egérie, however, is genuinely simple. Each strap has a black tab that, when pressed down, pulls back the pin so you can easily remove it from the lugs and switch straps. It’s smooth, doesn’t require you to have long nails and takes less than a minute—finally, an easy strap system that is actually user friendly.

The Egérie, revamped

Egérie Moonphase © Joy Corthesy/WorldTempus

While you can’t switch between a metal bracelet or strap yet on the Egérie without going to the boutique, each gold model comes with three differently coloured Mississippiensis alligator leather straps. In my case, I was able to easily switch between raspberry coloured strap for a dab of summer brightness and a more sombre taupe strap for the evenings.

The verdict

While I always find diamond-set pieces to be particularly beautiful (I’m often distracted by bling), I’m usually too self-conscious to actually wear them day-to-day. The benefit of the Egérie’s more classic design, however, is that while it is bright and beautiful, it also lends itself to a more casual look. Just change the strap and off you go from the office to after-work drinks.

I found it easy to wear and didn’t have to adjust the time once after setting it the first time, thanks to the manufacture 10088 L calibre that boasts a 40-hour power reserve. The Egérie moonphase is demure and classic, a wearable piece that maintains its elegance through the subtle details Vacheron Constantin reworked for the round case.

The Egérie, revamped

Egérie Moonphase © Joy Corthesy/WorldTempus

 

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An exploration of the history of Vacheron Constantin is a voyage of discovery, revealing the excellence of age-old watchmaking. Each timepiece is the result of the creative inspiration of the watchmaker or craftsman, dedicating their knowhow to the birth of outstanding watches. The Manufacture also works within a social and environmental code of ethics, and has had Responsible Jewellery Council certification since 2012.

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