Cartier Made A Watch Case So Seductively Tactile That It Inspired Its Own Fine Jewellery Line

Cushy and spongey, the Coussin de Cartier jewellery line is not just about looks but the experience.
by Charmian Leong

Photo: Cartier

Watches and jewellery are often placed in the same category of covetables owing to similarities like the use of precious stones, the stewardship of rare handcrafts, and price tags that are better left to the imagination. While there are high jewellery creations that happen to have a watch hidden somewhere amidst the mass of gems, watches and jewellery designs have, for the most part, remained fairly discrete.

For maisons that produce both, there have been rare occasions when a design fronted by a timepiece proved so successful it was carried over to jewellery. We’ve seen this before with Chopard’s Happy Diamonds collection, Bulgari’s Serpenti line, and Cartier’s emblematic panther motif. And the latter has done it again with the launch of the Coussin de Cartier fine jewellery collection, based on an innovative watch case launched in 2022.


The Coussin de Cartier watch collection launched in 2022. (Photo: Cartier)

Cartier is a master of transforming common and familiar shapes into mass objects of desire, as evidenced by the success of collections like the Tank, Crash, Ballon Bleu, and more. Two years ago, it launched a series of glittering timepieces inspired by the shape of a cushion (coussin in French).

While not an uncommon case shape by any means, the standard Coussin de Cartier models gave these rounded square cases a stylish twist with spiralling diamonds and gemstones. But Cartier also released two limited editions that took the “coussin” name more literally, creating a soft and flexible case — not exactly words used to describe something made of metal and minerals.

Cartier transformed a shape into an irresistible experience. (Photo: Cartier)

Cartier achieved this using a flexible, 3D-printed mesh of white gold that was then carefully set with diamonds or coloured precious stones. Beneath the mesh lies a rigid inner cage made of resin to safeguard the movement. It took a team of 15 to realise this concept, with each mesh said to have needed massaging by hand for four to five hours to ensure its pliability. The result is a case that is gratifyingly springy.

Those who have found it hard to resist squeezing their Coussin watches (trust us, the urge is real) will be pleased to know that this precious lattice has been reborn into a sumptuous bracelet and ring. Both are crafted from white gold, with the bracelet fully paved with 1,103 diamonds totalling 27.51 carats and the ring set with 525 brilliant-cut diamonds for 5.75 carats (for size 52).

Each stone has also been carefully set to allow light to refract, even across the curved surfaces. Now Cartier can proudly assert that their jewellery not only looks good but feels good, too.

This story originally published on The Peak Singapore.

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