Vacheron Constantin 222 Ladies Yellow Gold
Why We Love it
Why We Love it–
For the watch industry, the 1970s was a decade of great upheaval, and even Vacheron Constantin, stalwart member of the Holy Trinity, wasn’t immune to the challenges of the era.
The 1969 introduction of the Seiko Astron, the world’s first commercially available quartz wristwatch, sent tremors throughout the industry. Both visually and internally, the Astron was something the industry hadn’t seen before, with a distinctive case shape housing a movement that kept better time than the finest Swiss mechanical calibres - at a fraction of the price. Attempts by big Swiss manufacturers to release a quartz watch of their own — the Beta 21 — weren't a commercial success.
As sales of Swiss timepieces dipped and as a looming oil crisis gripped the worldwide economy, Swiss manufactures realized that they had to develop something truly unique if they wished to stay afloat. Thus, Audemars Piguet tapped the brilliant mind of Gérald Genta to design the Royal Oak in 1972, creating a new category of 'Sport Luxury' timepieces with eye-watering price tags. Their gamble payed off and the market has seemingly been infatuated with the style ever since! Patek Philippe followed suit with the Nautilus in 1976. That left Vacheron Constantin to try its hand at the “luxury sports watch.”
To celebrate the manufacture’s 222nd anniversary in 1977, Vacheron introduced the 222. For its distinctive design, the maison leaned on a young maverick designer by the name of Jorg Hysek. The watch that Hysek designed, with its thin, angular case with an integrated bracelet admittedly drew inspiration from the Royal Oak and Nautilus, signaling a new modern direction for the classically-minded atelier.
The serrated bezel of the 222, paired with a clean non-textured dial was entirely unique to Vacheron Constantin. The original model - sized at 37mm - saw production in limited numbers: Only 500 were made in steel, 100 in solid gold, and 120 in two-tone. The line was then discontinued in 1985, making it exceedingly rare.
This 222 is a ladies model dating to the early 1980s. Housed in a 24mm 18K yellow gold case with a signed crown and signature stylized bezel, it features a grey, non-luminous dial with applied gold ‘stick’ indices and a matching ‘sword’ handset. Signed with the brand’s signature Maltese cross logo on the front of the case at 5 o’clock, it comes paired to an integrated multi-link bracelet with a signed locking clasp, and is powered by a quartz movement.
In absolutely untouched condition throughout with an unpolished case and flawless dial, this is an opportunity for a discerning female collector to own a beautiful example of one of the most iconic timepieces of the era.
Established in 1755, the manufacture soon had a reputation for the elegance of its products, which included pocket watches with complicated movements and engine-turned dials. Even today, these are marks of a watchmaker’s expertise due to the skill and precision involved in crafting them. For Vacheron Constantin to have achieved such a feat in the eighteenth century is nothing short of remarkable.
This expertise carried the firm through the 19th century, earning it gold medals at National Exhibitions and blazing trails in the area of anti-magnetic timepieces. The 20th century saw further achievements, such as the opening of its boutique on the Quai de L’Ile in Geneva, where it still resides today.
Even through the Depression and the Second World War, when many watch companies were forced to band together with competitors or else face closure, the manufacture continued to thrive. Whether via its vintage-inspired Historiques collection or its adventurous Overseas line, modern Vacheron Constantin is a horological force to be reckoned with.
Analog:Shift stands behind the authenticity of our products in perpetuity.
Since our pieces are vintage or pre-owned, please expect wear & patina from usage and age. Please read each item description and examine all product images.
We back each Analog:Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.
Please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.
Shipping & Returns
Shipping & Returns+
All of our watches include complementary insured shipping within the 50 states.
Most of our products are on hand and will ship directly from our headquarters in New York City. In some cases, watches will be shipped directly from one of our authorized partners.
We generally ship our products via FedEx, fully insured, within 5 business days of purchase. An adult signature is required for receipt of all packages for insurance purposes. Expedited shipping is available at an additional cost. We are also happy to hand deliver your purchase in Manhattan or you may pick it up at our showroom.
Returns must be sent overnight or by priority international delivery, fully insured and paid for by the customer. A restocking fee may apply. Watches must be returned in the same condition as initially shipped.
We welcome international buyers, please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.
Vacheron Constantin 222 Ladies Yellow Gold