Chanel’s Boy.friend Skele­ton Cal­i­bre 3 ce­ments the brand’s watch­mak­ing phi­los­o­phy

Singapore Tatler Jewels & Time - - Contents - Text Ni­co­lette Wong

Chanel’s Boy.friend is back with a hot new move­ment

“Our ap­proach at Chanel is to think of de­sign be­fore the tech­ni­cal con­sid­er­a­tions,” says Ni­co­las Beau, the di­rec­tor of in­ter­na­tional business de­vel­op­ment for watches and fine jew­ellery at Chanel. He was com­ment­ing on the de­vel­op­ment of Chanel’s three in-house watch move­ments, which have come out in quick suc­ces­sion in the last three years, be­gin­ning with the Cal­i­bre 1 in 2016.

The Mon­sieur de Chanel watch was de­signed specif­i­cally to house the Cal­i­bre 1. Cal­i­bre 3, on the other hand, was cre­ated to fit the ex­ist­ing Boy.friend watch, which was first launched in 2015 and whose char­ac­ter­is­tic oc­tag­o­nal case re­calls the shape of the Place Vendôme in Paris, or the glass bot­tle cap of Chanel’s fa­mous No. 5 fra­grance. The re­sult is the Chanel Boy.friend Skele­ton Cal­i­bre 3, a time­piece that is un­mis­tak­ably fem­i­nine but with a gen­er­ous dose of mas­culin­ity, thanks to its vis­i­ble me­chan­ics. Be­cause Cal­i­bre 3 was de­signed to be on dis­play, its move­ment ar­chi­tec­ture had to be beau­ti­ful and en­hance the ele­gant lines of the Boy.friend case. Ac­cord­ing to Beau, the bridges of the Cal­i­bre 3 were de­signed first, to echo the dial de­sign of the Boy.friend be­fore cre­at­ing the move­ment around them. The move­ment it­self is con­structed in a cen­tralised lin­ear fash­ion, which is un­usual and brings at­ten­tion to the black­ened full wheels in the gear train. And be­cause a ro­tor would de­tract from the clean lines of the move­ment, the Cal­i­bre 3 is a man­ual wind­ing move­ment. The Cal­i­bre 3 also has beige gold— Chanel’s pro­pri­etary gold al­loy—cham­fer­ing on the in­side edges of the bridges to com­ple­ment the beige gold case. The Cal­i­bre 3 is a pic­ture-per­fect fit for the Boy.friend watch, and the Boy.friend Skele­ton Cal­i­bre 3 cer­tainly ce­ments Chanel’s watch­mak­ing phi­los­o­phy—that tech­ni­cal prow­ess is used to en­hance ex­cel­lent de­sign, and is not an end unto it­self.

The wheels on the Cal­i­bre 3 are black­ened and kept full (not skele­tonised like the rest of the move­ment) to add a mas­cu­line touch to the Boy.friend.

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