Leave it to chance
He loves me, he loves me not…? The words of the whimsical old French game define Christophe Claret’s artful Layla, an astonishing mechanical watch that will, in a manner of speaking, answer the question for you. By pressing the button at 2 o’clock, some of the petals in the centre of the dial are ‘picked off’ (they disappear from view) and the ‘sentiment’ indicator (a joyful complication, if ever there was) advances randomly through a list of ‘a little’, ‘a lot’, ‘passionately’ and ‘madly’, all written in Arabic script. When all the petals have gone, you have your answer. There are some 731 components in the automatic movement, a technical tour de force that’s made all the more glittering by the addition of a 42.5mm red gold case, 4.8 carats of baguette-cut diamonds, a mother-of-pearl dial and shimmering emeralds. Only 20 will be made.
Letters of love
If we can agree the pen is mightier than the sword, we can certainly agree it’s more romantic. How much weightier a missive penned by hand than one conveyed by binary code? Visconti’s Rembrandt Red RB, named after the Dutch painter, strengthens the point. It’s brushed red resin body is unique to each pen, while a personal touch can be added by engraving the arched clip, inspired by Florence’s famously romantic Ponte Vecchio.
The adventure of a lifetime
Breitling’s collection of hardy timekeepers is not quite uniformly designed to cater for DEFCON 1, although not far off. As the case may be, it can be nice to know that even when its watches are softened with decorative finishes, they would cope with the rigours of a lifetime of adventure. This Colt Lady Diamond model fits that billing. Its sturdy 33mm stainless steel case houses a SuperQuartz movement that’s 10 times more accurate than standard quartz, while it’s elegantly finished with a mother-of-pearl dial, a diamond-set bezel and a fiery red leather strap.
Milk the moment
As a rule, Swiss watches celebrate the country’s traditions – Swiss watchmaking has roots in the 14th century and many of the crafts developed in the centuries since underpin the industry still. Sometimes those traditions appear more literally, as is the case with Claude Meylan’s whimsical LAC Poya collection, which is inspired by Switzerland’s traditional Poya festival, a procession of cows and wagons loaded with dairy farming equipment. The watch shows the story in chiselled ruthenium black steel, and centres it around a couple encircled by a heart. The automatic mechanical movement at 3 o’clock is skeletonised so you can see its escapement, beating like a pounding heart.
Say it with diamonds
It’s testament to the strength of Bell & Ross’s iconic square-cased watch that it can cope with the tension of needing to be the base for both hugely technical watches created to survive desert storms and stomach-turning G-forces, and also for delicate, playful pieces such as this, the BR S Pink Diamond Eagle Diamonds. The square case and four exposed screws remain, while the pink sunray dial is decorated with seven diamonds, arranged in the form of the Aquila Constellation, aquila being the Latin word for ‘eagle’. Some 66 brilliant-cut diamonds (totalling 0.99 carats) decorate the bezel, and a pink alligator strap completes the picture.