top of page

Vacheron Constantin's Grand Lady Kalla: A Versatile Jewellery Watch Returns

Updated: Jun 17

A creation reflecting the Maison’s long and rich history of jewellery and pendant watches.

  • A piece that comes to life thanks to the meticulous savoir-faire: a mantle of light, embroidered with 57 facets emerald-cut diamonds on the watch; along with diamonds, Akoya and onyx pearls on the pendant. A high-jewellery and versatile timepiece composed of 268 diamonds, for more than 46 carats.

  • Creativity as its best:  a timepiece composed of a watch and a tassel sautoir that can be worn in four different ways.

The powerful bond between Vacheron Constantin and women has been forged throughout the Maison’s uninterrupted activity since its founding in 1755. Right from its early years – the oldest gemset piece in its private collection dates from 1812 – the Manufacture has cultivated creativity imbued with elegance matching fine craftsmanship in the realm of Haute Joaillerie. The Grand Lady Kalla now adds a dazzling new chapter to this tradition. Based on the design of the iconic Kalla introduced in 1980 – itself heir to the Kallista unveiled in 1979 – the new timepiece offers several ways of wearing it. A luminous treasure born from the virtuoso pairing and setting of more than 46 carats of exclusively emerald-cut diamonds, this model is an outstanding example of Vacheron Constantin's creative freedom and expertise.

A tribute to history

In 1979, Vacheron Constantin made watchmaking history with the Kallista, whose opulence – starring 130 carats of diamonds – was matched only by the innovation of Raymond Morretti's design, a geometric rivière carved out of a solid gold ingot from which the watch's 140 grams were drawn. Issued as a single-piece edition, it was the world’s most expensive watch creation. Its descendants were no less spectacular, as exemplified by the Kalla unveiled in 1980. Also sculpted from a block of 18K yellow gold sparkling with 108 emerald-cut diamonds totalling around 30 carats, the watch became so iconic that it inspired an eponymous collection whose singular creations have earned unanimous acclaim. One notable example is the white gold Lady Kalla with a satin strap, which won the Jewellery Watch award at the first Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève in 2001. Nine years later in 2010, to mark the 30th anniversary of the Lady Kalla, the Lady Kalla Flamme was presented, glowing with the fire of 57-facet diamonds and inaugurating the Flame cut, devised by Vacheron Constantin and duly approved by the GIA (Gemological Institute of America).

In 2024, the Grand Lady Kalla honours the name that inspired it, the Greek word kallista meaning "the most beautiful". From the first sketch in the design studio to the final polishing operation, the new creation embodies a wealth of superlatives. The subtlety of the adjustments is matched by their virtuoso execution. The 57 facets of the emerald-cut diamonds chosen for this new piece underline their crystal-clear clarity. Slightly slimmed down to reflect contemporary tastes, the dial is distinguished by the meticulous work of the master gem-setter who has  adorned it with modernised prongs. Reduced to a minimum to provide space for the hands, they are triangular on the bracelet and case middle to highlight the stones; or pyramid-shaped to form the Maison’s iconic Maltese cross sparkling in the light. The sautoir necklace featuring onyx and diamonds, as well as Akoya pearl tassels chosen for their luster and their roundness, creates an appealing dialogue between Art Deco and the 21st century.

A jewel on the wrist. Emerald-cut diamonds, Akoya and onyx pearls

A veritable Haute Joaillerie masterpiece, the Grand Lady Kalla testifies to the determination to pass on excellence that has consistently driven the Maison. The elegance of the emerald cut, which requires a perfectly pure crystalline material, is amplified by the beauty of the pairing. No less than 131 diamonds have been meticulously selected by the Maison’s gemmologists to ensure a harmonious match in terms of colour, clarity and luminosity. The extreme precision of the setting, given the sharp angles of the emerald cut, allows the stones to express their true nature. Their broad flashes of light create a fascinating sparkle bringing special radiance to the design.

The art of the Maison’s jewellers is also expressed on the sautoir necklace, whose mobile ornament paved with 15 diamonds for over 12 carats features a superb centre stone GIA-certified over 2 carats. This transformable jewellery piece can be worn both on the necklace and on the bracelet.

One watch and one tassel sautoir, four original ways to wear them

Comprising a watch and a sautoir necklace, the Grand Lady Kalla is a playful, contemporary invitation to glide stylishly from wrist to neckline and back. The quartet of wearability options afforded by this timepiece chimes with the creativity characterising the history of Vacheron Constantin for more than two and a half centuries. This expertise is vividly illustrated by ladies' pendant watches such as the 1924 model featuring a removable fastening system serving to transform the platinum pendant set with rubies, emeralds, onyx and diamonds into a brooch.A century later, the Maison has quadrupled this transformability, embedding it firmly in the present era. The Grand Lady Kalla thus instates a jewellery dialogue between a watch entirely set with diamonds and a sautoir necklace combining diamonds and Akoya pearls contrasting with onyx beads. The watch can be removed from the bracelet to be replaced by the jewel element gracing the sautoir necklace. The latter can in turn accommodate the watch, reviving the elegant gestures of the early 20th century, when women glanced at the time using their fingertips, by touching their sautoir. To ensure perfect alignment with contemporary styling, the master artisans of the Manufacture have deployed their mastery in such a way that the Grand Lady Kalla can be very easily transformed in an entirely tool-free way.

From Geometry to Artistry, Vacheron Constantin annual theme

A Vacheron Constantin watch is far more than merely the sum of its parts. Starting from a sketch, a geometrical drawing and its technical extensions, a whole world of shapes, colours and textures is born. The complex structures of mechanical engineering combine with design; meticulous detail gives life to grace; artisanal intelligence sparks emotions. Based on formal, mathematical study, Vacheron Constantin timepieces are thus endowed with a touch of soulfulness and elegance representing the ultimate expression of artistic talent. The classicism of the Traditionnelle collection; the minimalism of the Patrimony watches; the allure of Égérie; and the sporty-chic spirit of Overseas, all vividly illustrate this alchemy within which artistry is inspired by geometrical shapes, expressed through Vacheron Constantin's 2024 theme.

ML Staff. Courtesy of Vacheron Constantin


bottom of page