I’m going to be quite frank here. Ladies watches can be a bit well boring. You know the recipe gem set gold in a slender form factor that’s as forgettable as the name on the dial as long as it catches.
Every stray particle of light and scatters it around the room. It seems that we ‘ Ll, surely do to a burly deep sea wearing hairy chested bloke, a lady’s. Watch from piaget may seem little different on the surface, but beneath the bright light glancing off the gold, these watches have a little secret.
Their bracelets are some of the most complicated in all of watchmaking. Stick around you won’t regret it watchfinder the pre-owned watch specialist now available in france, germany, switzerland, usa and hong kong, so we can keep on making great watch videos.
I’d, really appreciate it if you subscribed to the channel. If you already are it really does help? Thank you. Alright, you’re, probably thinking what can you possibly tell me about a little jewelry watch that’s going to interest me well, first, off back it up with that attitude and secondly, i’m about to tell you.
Piaget has been known since the mid-20th century for its jewellery pieces crafting elegant slender watches for women using the finest materials our planet has to offer, but in amongst all the glitz glamour and let’s face it fluff.
There are practical problems that arise from trying to make watches like these. Since the 1957 launch of the caliber 9p, a two millimeter thick movement of piaget’s, own design, the slenderness of the bit of the watch you look at to tell the time.
Has never been an issue, but what about the rest of it? The other bit that holds the time telling bit on the wrist and stops it falling off the easiest solution to strapping a slender watch onto a slender wrist in a way that’s.
Both elegant and comfortable is a strap, typically made from cow or perhaps some other, more exotic and less farmyardy animal, but these piaget watches were supposed to reach the extremities of excellence and luxury and a bit of dead animal skin.
Just wasn’t going to cut the mustard. If the watch was gold, the strap had to be gold as well. So how do you turn heavy inflexible gold into something so light and dainty? It barely feels like it’s there at all.
For that we turn our attention to the medieval battlefield of all places, to the armor, worn by soldiers to try and prevent, or at least delay their demise. Chainmail chainmail was developed as an alternative to heavy, solid, inflexible metal armor to be lighter, well less heavy and less restrictive to give its wearer an advantage.
Whilst the bracelet of a piaget watch, didn’t need to stop a broadsword, he did need to be flexible and comfortable, and so the chainmail approach seemed ideal. But there was a problem. I don’t know if you ‘
Ve seen the entirety of the behind the scenes from the extended edition boxset of the lord of the rings, trilogy directed by peter jackson, starring elijah wood, but there’s, a section in it about chainmail.
Bear with me a very depressed sounding wetter. Technician explains how it takes three days to make one suit of chain mail, as he assembles it ring by ring with his hands almost blindly piecing it together.
He’s made so much of it. We cut to 18 months on and he’s still at it. 15 million rings later now. Imagine replicating that at an almost microscopic level, there are approaching 1 000 rings in this chain, bracelet each one individually, curved into shape, linked together, one by one and soldered shut by hand at a scale that’s, barely visible the production of the lord Of the rings went on for several years, piaget has been making these bracelets since the 1960s.
A fine chain linked bracelet was all very well and good, but the guys over at piaget thought they could do better as delicate as this arrangement of tiny links is. Let’s, be honest! No one’s, going to think it’s as smooth and unified as a leather strap.
This is bracelet inception and we need to go deeper. Inspiration came once again from another wearable item, but one less suited to the battlefield. This time, plain old, ordinary clothes, a t-shirt or a pair of jeans feels like it’s.
A nice smooth single layer of material, despite the fact that spoiler alert is actually woven together from threads of, in my case at least the finest nylon, except instead of nylon. This material would be woven in gold thread tightly stitched around gold pins.
To give the look and feel of fabric, imagine a suit made out of this stuff. It would be heavy, but here on a watch bracelet, it offers the sparkly benefits of gold, but without the inconvenience of a brash bulky, traditional bracelet.
Now, at this point, you might be thinking who, in their right mind, would want to spend hours and hours of their time making tiny chain link or wire weave bracelets, and the answer is, as you would imagine, not many people in fact, the last school that taught This stuff closed down a decade and a half ago, and it’s, easy to see why this is painstaking, tedious work that requires almost ungodly levels of concentration and patience on a very difficult but very repetitive, process.
Not many people would be willing or capable to become what’s known as a chainsmith. There’s, a man at piaget, however, who is willing and capable to do this work and has done for over 20 years? But he and this isn’t.
A joke has just one year left till retirement. Assuming a career at piaget is nothing like working homicide for the lapd. He should continue to live a long and healthy life, but as far as the work he’s leaving behind goes, there are no graduates to replace him.
No cvs dropping on the doormat at piaget hq. He’s. The last of a legacy done finito, except that piaget saw this coming and they asked him to train to jewelers to learn his skill set. If he hadn’t that knowledge would be gone forever, it’s not on wikipedia or on a youtube tutorial.
What’s up guys today, we’re, going to learn how to make a chain link bracelet, but first i need to talk about something completely irrelevant to make sure i get ads on the video it’s all up There in his head and in the muscle memory of his fingers, let’s just hope.
He didn’t train the new apprentices wrong on purpose. You know just for the lols we’ve made some good progress, but – and i don’t want to offend a man who’s, dedicated 20 years of his life to his art so soon before his retirement.
I think we can do better and so did piaget, because there’s. A third element to this story that takes the concept even further than before the chain mail was good. The wire weave was better, but we still don’t quite have that uniform appearance offered by a simple leather strap.
If this was me, i would at this point, throw my hat on the floor and walk out complaining outwardly of impossible expectations. But then i’m, no master craftsperson, nor will i ever be piaget so happened to have a few of those back in the day, and so an idea was proposed that would finally bring the suppleness and uniformity of a leather strap together with the Beauty of a solid gold bracelet once and for all, it was a crazy idea, the craziest yet, and one that demanded over 40 hours of finally handcrafted labor to complete from start to finish.
Imagine that coming into work on a monday morning to start a bracelet and just about getting it done friday afternoon before you go home 1. bracelet, not the whole watch, not even the movement 1. bracelet.
The idea was this: build a brick wall of tiny links, spaced just a few millimeters apart, held in place by a ladder of around 50 pins to create what is essentially a very fine bracelet. That sounds fairly normal so far, if on a much smaller scale, but for the next step to work, the precision on that bracelet would have to be absolute with a perfect fit between each incredibly tiny link, so that no gap, however small, could be seen with the Bracelet laid flat, it would look quite simply like a solid piece of metal to achieve this requires each link to be hand, finished and fitted, such that the fitment is beyond perfect.
Every piece is soldered in one by one and fine-tuned to sit completely flush to give the appearance of an unbroken surface. That’s step. One next comes step two, the hard bit here’s, where our master engravers step in.
Fortunately, there’s, a few more of those left than there are chainsmiths, but that’s. Only relatively speaking at one point. Around 30 years ago, the master engraver at piaget had to train his son to make sure the company wouldn’t go without now.
Piaget has two master engravers with 20 years and eight years experience working with jewelry respectively, adding the finishing touches to this. What’s known as a palace? Decor bracelet? It’s, the master engravers job to make sure whatever’s left of the joints between each link disappear completely by hand carving a motif into the surface.
This is incredibly painstaking. Work taking up to 15 hours per bracelet and incredibly risky too one mistake and the entire bracelet is scrap, sent back to the furnace. It’s, also an opportunity to express artistry and creativity with an abundance of designs.
Gracing these fine bracelets over the years at last count over a hundred had been produced from bark to fur, to frost and everything in between each line is delicately scribed by hand with tools that are almost as old as the company itself.
Turning the bracelet into the finest expression of elegance ever achieved behind every watch, there’s, a story a craft and for these seemingly straightforward ladies pieces from piaget there’s more to tell than you might otherwise think from chain to palace.
Decor, these bracelets hide decades of skill, utmost precision and, unfortunately, a dying art. Let’s, hope that when piaget’s artisans finally do retire. The ability to produce these hidden masterpieces, doesn’t retire with them, discover more exceptional watches at watchfinder.
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