A moving butterfly brings Van Cleef and Arpels’ Lady Arpels Papillon Automate to life

The colors and daintiness of butterflies seems to have inspired the Lady Arpels Papillon Automate from Van Cleef and Arpels. This one uses a butterfly automaton to create a dramatic effect in a feat of mechanical creativity. The first thing you’ll notice about this watch is the detailed dial that uses enamel and colored gemstones to create a pretty natural setting rendered in cool colors.

A second look reveals finer details from the different setting techniques used on the stones to the graduated colors and 3d wings of the butterfly. From time to time these wings will appear to flutter at random. The secret is an irregular wheel that activates the flutter mechanism at intervals of three to ten minutes. The number of times the wings flutter depends on how wound up the balance spring is.

Even if the beauty of the complication is wasted on you, the aesthetic value of the watch alone is remarkable, it definitely deserves your attention at SIHH 2017.