Must de Cartier

imageThe grail list got a little shorter last week. I finally got my hands on a Must de Cartier tank watch. Long story short: at one point in Cartier’s history, the company’s Paris, London and New York operations diverged. In 1976, the head of the Paris group came up with the Must de Cartier — which was a collection aimed at a younger, hipper audience.

The Must de Cartier watch was the centrepiece of this collection. Based on the classic Tank case, but with more fashion-forward dials, the timepiece was a big hit. The original versions (like this one) house a 17 jewel movement while later models are Quartz-driven. The cases are vermeil (gold plated sterling silver) with a sapphire cabochon on the winder.

Although these are the most affordable Cartier watches available, I have never managed to find one for under $500. But I got lucky at the Waddington’s auction last week — the lot came up late in the day and no one bid against me. This baby is also in better shape than any of the vintage pieces I’ve examined in the past. It looks box fresh!