This week we decided to switch it up a bit for or Watch Wednesday. This year, we have been given the exclusive opportunity to go behind the doors of one of the most prestigious clothiers in the world, Louis Vuitton, as they show us what goes into the production of their luxury watch series. For the last seven years, Louis Vuitton Malletier (as they are formally called) have been named the world’s most valuable luxury brand. Despite this gloatworthy designation, this design powerhouse, which was founded in 1854, only made it’s entry into the watchmaking industry as early as 2002, with the introduction of it’s iconic Tambour watch design. Now, ten years later, the legendary clothier has decided to let us behind the walls of their watchmaking factory in Geneva, Switzerland, in a series that they called “Les Rendez-Vous du Temps”, or “The Meeting of Times.” (My French is really bad.) n the series however, the company gives us a glimpse behind the scenes of the watchmaking operation; where the expert Swiss watchmakers show you why you pay a quarter-million dollars for a watch. I think this is a great move on Louis Vuitton’s part, as it will help them to establish themselves in an industry that does not take kindly to pieces that they consider to be “fashion watches.” These are the first 3 videos (out of 7 videos so far), and the rest will be posted soon.
Enjoy, “Les Rendez-Vous du Temps” 1-3 below.
In this first edition, Louis Vuitton (and their acquired workshop, La Fabrique du Temps) show us how a simple spring is made, which is then placed around the dial to ensure the accuracy of the time’s movement. Also, we get to see the assembly of the watch’s minute repeater (eeek!) as was seen in last week’s Cartier “Rotonde de Cartier”.
In the second part, we are shown the various detailing techniques that are used to decorate various parts of the watch, like the minute-repeater hammers, and gears:
The third part, called “The Preparation of Movement 1/2″ shows us the preparation of grand complications such as the tourbillon and the intrenal watch gears:
More “Les Rendez-Vous du Temps” on next week’s Watch Wednsdays…