Named flamed gold, that remarkable technique, which is inspired by the method of bluing watch hands in a naked flame, involves the oxidisation of an 18K gold plate at various temperatures to obtain different colours (fun fact: a deep blue hue is produced at around 300°C while a pretty beige tint emerges at a far less intense 170°C).
The task is not as simple as it sounds. In between each successive firing stage, parts of the motif which are to be imbued with another colour are carefully stripped away by Cartier’s artisans. This is repeated until the final image, the stunning close-up of a panther, is revealed. Housed in the new Ronde Louis Cartier XL, the masterpiece’s allure is further enhanced with a slick case rendered in 18K white gold and a bezel generously adorned with baguette-cut diamonds.
This article first appeared in the June/July 2017 issue of L'Officiel Singapore (out now on Magzter and newsstands). Click here to subscribe.