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Watch & Learn: Irène Jacob’s Van Cleef & Arpels

The legendary Swiss-French star’s lucky timekeeper

What does it take to turn heads on the Croisette at Cannes?

In the case of actress Irène Jacob and her Van Cleef & Arpels Alhambra Vintage Bracelet Watch, it helps to be an icon. Roles in Au révoirs, Les EnfantsThe Double Life of Véronique and Three Colors: Red cemented Jacob’s place in firmament of French cinema.  And although she has been focusing her attentions on theatrical endeavors lately, her casual chic jumpsuit and simple jewels at the opening ceremony for the 68th Cannes Film Festival still commanded plenty of attention.

Jacob’s Van Cleef & Arpels Alhambra Vintage Bracelet Watch is just as timeless. Launched in 1968, the iconic clover Alhambra motif has become Van Cleef & Arpels’ most recognizable design. It is meant to symbolize luck, love, health and fortune. It also evokes the elegance of Spanish Moorish architecture.

Van Cleef & Arpels Alhambra Vintage Bracelet Watch

Van Cleef & Arpels Alhambra Vintage Bracelet Watch

The Paris-based company’s haute horology heritage goes back to the early 1900s, and by marrying the tradition of watch making and jewelry design, Van Cleef & Arpels was easily able to translate the classic Alhambra clover to several styles of wristwatches. But this Vintage Bracelet Watch is the most romantic of the collection.

Jacob’s version features a 29.3mm pink gold case set with diamonds and surrounding a mother of pearl dial. The bracelet of this charming watch is made up of curving, open-work links. It is powered by a precision Swiss Quartz movement, and while we prefer mechanical calibers, many luxury houses still opt for quartz movements in ladies watches because it offers creators more freedom in the design. And, ultimately, following one’s fancy is what French style is all about.

Just as Jacob opted to walk the red carpet in a stunning but simple ensemble, the Alhambra Vintage Bracelet Watch is confident enough to let its reputation do the talking.