Recently, in London, Frederique Constant unveiled the all-new Ladies Automatic collection of timepieces, with its global charity ambassador, Gwyneth Paltrow. The new, softly colored Ladies Automatic watches also have a charitable side. According to Peter and Aletta Stas of Frederique Constant, USD 50 of the sale of each watch will benefit Paltrow’s charity of choice: DonorsChoose.org. This new Frederique Constant Ladies Automatic Collection isn’t only good looking, it also has good intentions.
The new collection of Ladies Automatic watches consists of six new pieces and features a new case shape. The 36mm two-part round case has added sensual appeal thanks to the lower portion of the case, wherein the case sides seem to flow effortlessly into the ergonomic lugs for a curvaceous look. The line also features intriguing new color combinations.
There are two versions of the Ladies Automatics being issued – each in different color renditions. The brand’s iconic Heart Beat is one of the models being offered. It features the signature double open-worked heart motif at 12 o’clock on the sunray dial that allows a view of the movement. Each dial is decorated with a feminine motif that is tone-on-tone for subtle appeal. The Heart Beat watches feature Arabic numerals at 3, 6, and 9 o’clock and six diamond markers. Crafted in 18k rose gold-plated steel or in non-coated stainless steel, the Frederique Constant Heart Beat Ladies Automatics are being offered in four distinct color choices here, including a rose gold-plated model with deep blue dial and strap, a stainless steel version with rich burgundy dial and strap, steel with silvered dial and blue strap, and rose gold with silvered dial and brown strap.
There is also a full-dial version of the Ladies Automatic collection. Without the double overlapping heart motif at 12 o’clock, this version features eight diamond markers on the dial, along with Roman numerals at 12, 6 and 9 o’clock. There is a date aperture at 3 o’clock on this version. Here again, the watch is offered in 18k rose gold-plated steel or in stainless steel. The color motifs here include a pale grey/blue strap version in stainless steel with silver dial and a rose gold-plated version with silvered dial and brown alligator strap.
The brand’s in-house Caliber FC-310 Heart Beat automatic movement with 26 jewels and 38 hours of power reserve powers the four Double Heart Beat watches. The FC-303 Automatic movement with 26 jewels and 38 hours of power reserve powers the two full-dial models. These automatic movements are based on Sellita architectures (so basically, ETA clones). Additionally, each watch features a convex sapphire crystal and a transparent sapphire caseback for viewing of the movements. All watches are water-resistant to 50 meters. They range in price from EUR 1,495 to EUR 1,895. More details on frederiqueconstant.com.
Some hands-on impressions
For a couple of weeks, I wore the full-dial stainless steel version of this watch. My overall first impression of the watch was “classic” but somehow chic and a bit on the modern side. The diamonds are a nice addition to the dial because they catch the light and draw just the right amount of sparkle. The applied Roman numerals at 12, 6 and 9 o’clock are color-coordinated in rose gold plate or steel with the case, as are the long, slim hands – making for a really nice, balanced look.
One of the nice things about the full-dial watch is that it is powered by the FC-303 movement and equipped with a useful date indication at 3 o’clock. I love the fact that the date indicator is actually large enough to read without being obtrusive. As to the size of the watch, I think the 36mm is great for a small, thin wrist. Even though I typically prefer a larger watch, this one made its own classically elegant and feminine statement on my wrist.
This article has been written by Roberta Naas, founder of A Timely Perspective; and author of six books on watches.