BASELWORLD 2017: Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36mm

BASELWORLD 2017: Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36mm

The Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36mm timepieces explore the origins of luxury and fuse together the ancient art of silk weaving and embossing, with a dash of noble inspiration from Europe’s royal houses.

Harry Winston’s constant exploration in the field of rare artistic crafts has resulted in the creation of two singular dials for the Premier Collection. An inimitable luxury product made from embossed raw silk, the Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36mm models mark, for the first time, the artistic marriage of silk and the art of embossing.

Where East meets West

Silk has always been considered the most precious natural fabric and was first developed in ancient China over 4,000 years ago. Originally reserved for Emperors, a growing demand for the luxurious textile led to the opening of the Silk Route, a vast network of trade routes connecting the East to the West.

Because of its rich historical symbolism and innate beauty, the House of Harry Winston decided to use silk as the backdrop for its new dial. Unlike anything done before in the history of silk production, Harry Winston designers embarked on a new project and used a novel technique that encourages the silkworm to weave its own fabric. The result is a delicate, small area of raw silk created without the interaction of human hands. This gift of raw silk, produced directly by nature, was then dyed to obtain four colors which form the background of the dial: an intense royal red, a silvery grey, a pure white and a delicate imperial pink hue.

Embossing the silk

Once the unique material was procured, the next step was to find an embossing workshop that would be willing to work with silk. Usually reserved for leather and paper, embossing is a technique that is used to create raised and recessed relief images on a surface. After countless trials, a master embosser was able to stamp the 18-karat or 22-karat gold design into the raw silk, giving the material a remarkable sense of volume and depth.

European luxury

The history of luxury products is deeply rooted in royalty, and over the ages, artisans of all vocations have perfected their skills to create exquisite products for nobility and privileged classes. Europe’s royal families have long appreciated the best of all worlds and were the source of inspiration behind the floral and star-shaped motifs embossed on the raw silk dials.

A case of distinction

Since its debut in 1989, Harry Winston’s Premier Timepiece Collection has been the designated series to showcase various artistic forms. Instantly recognizable by the distinctive diamond-set lugs that attach the case to the bracelet and replicate the shape of the arched entrance to Harry Winston’s Fifth Avenue Flagship Salon, the Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36mm cases will be presented in 18-karat white and rose gold with 57 brilliant-cut diamonds on the bezel and lugs.

The floral motif embossed on the white and pink silk dials will be available in 36mm white and rose gold cases respectively, and will feature 12 diamond hour markers. The star-shaped motif embossed on the silvery grey and the royal red silk dials will also be presented in 36mm white and rose gold cases.

A sophisticated mechanical movement

The Premier Delicate Silk Automatic 36mm is powered by a high-end Swiss automatic movement. Equipped with the latest technology - a flat silicon balance spring – the movement is designed to keep impeccable time that is on par with the regal beauty of the dial. True to all Harry Winston designs, this timepiece features a rose gold rotor and elegant finishes on the movement, including circular Côtes de Genève motifs, rhodium plating and circular graining that can be admired through the sapphire crystal caseback.

Presented on satin straps, the gold ardillon buckles are also set with 17 brilliant-cut diamonds. Each model is a limited edition of 30 pieces.