Louis Vuitton : The “ Worldtime ” indication…

The name Louis Vuitton is almost synonymous with an invitation to travel. The famous flat trunk and its various models created by the eponymous founder are still essential accessories for those wishing to travel the world with elegance and sophistication. The Escale Worldtime watch is perpetuating this tradition and drawing on the history of the company to reinvent the distinctive features of the travel watch.


Louis Vuitton has always offered clients the possibility of customiz-ing their trunks with strips of colour, initials, coats of arms and other hand-painted geometric pictograms. This colourful universe and striking personalized effects have served as inspiration for the creation of the dial of the Escale Worldtime watch. It takes the craftsman 50 hours to complete a dial in the workshop dedicated specifically to this task within the La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton Manufacture using miniature painting techniques and working with oil paint. Over 30 colours are applied one by one with a paintbrush using tiny, successive strokes before the piece is dried in an oven heated to 100 °C. The result, which is captivating in terms of the brightness, relief and contrasts created, is further magnified by the visual effect separating the glass from the dial. This is why the black triangle topped with a yellow arrow (the only fixed element on the dial indicating the time and city of reference) is applied directly underneath the glass to prevent it from restricting the movement of the mobile disks.


The dial consists of three separate mobile disks, which can be adjusted by means of the single crown. The large exterior double-layered coloured disks comprises the initials of cities. It can be rotated to adjust to the reference city which should be positioned at 12 o’clock or above the yellow arrow. Then the central disk, which is constantly rotating, is divided into two black and white semi-circles to distinguish between day and night. The smallest disk in the centre is also constantly rotating and comprises numbers corresponding to the minutes highlighted by a precise, contrasting minute circle.


The totally new case made from white gold with a satin-brushed or polished finish gives the impression that it has always existed. It features corner pieces which are reminiscent of Vuitton trunks, transformed into horns which protect the case to fulfil their original purpose, like a miniature round trunk containing a precious caliber. The slender bezel produces a particularly open dial creating a clarity which is consistent with the “Worldtime” function. The reverse side of the timepiece also reflects its excellent quality : the sapphire back reveals an aluminium disk coupled with an oscillating weight which rotates around a large LV in frosted glass. The automatic caliber was developed and assembled by La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton Manufacture.


Fascinating from a mechanical point of view and patented in 2010, the exclusive Spin Time movement displays the time via rotating cubes. Staying in line with contemporary trends, Louis Vuitton is this year presenting this captivating mechanism in the Tambour éVolution case : the Tambour éVolution Spin Time GMT. In this configuration, the dynamism of the GMT display, featuring on the dial in the form of twelve aluminium cubes with a fine satin finish, echoes the taut and flowing lines of the two-tone pink gold and “black MMC” case. Extremely useful when travelling, this unusually efficient way of reading the time proves to be extremely easy to adjust in practice. Developed and assembled by La Fabrique du Temps Louis Vuitton, the LV 111 caliber has been designed to be a model of simplicity and reliability under any circumstances. Acting like a jumping hour mechanism, the system wound by the automatic movement goes into action every 60 minutes. It moves, in a flash and by a twelfth of a turn, a disk equipped with appendices. The latter act on the Maltese crosses riveted to the axes of the aluminium cubes, rotating two of the twelve cubes by a quarter turn. The first presents a satin-finish face whereas it previously displayed an arrow, and the other, whose cube face had a satin-finish a few moments beforehand, presents in a flash an arrow pointing outwards to indicate the hours from 01:00 to 12:59 or an arrow pointing inwards to display those from 13:00 to 00:59. The combination of gold and “black MMC” gives this timepiece a distinguished architecture whose virility is accentuated by the presence of the V-shaped motif added at the crown, inspired by the famous “V” created in 1901 by Gaston Vuitton and affixed to his Steamer Bag.



The emblematic trunk continues its journey through the Louis Vuitton universe. From the initial reality of a tangible utilitarian object, in a collection of modern, feminine watches and jewellery comes into being by entering a whole new dimension. The structural elements of the trunk, the source of its strength and solidity, are transmuted into the aesthetic vocabulary of the Emprise collection. The metal reinforcement pieces, the locks, the nails have each been transformed into minutely repeated decorative themes, outlining perspectives, displaying a distinct femininity and forming a strong signature for a collection deeply rooted in the history of Louis Vuitton.


The Emprise watch is the quintessence of the collection’s Parisian spirit, graphic and delicate. The horns holding the wrist-strap are emphasized by motifs derived from trunk corner-pieces, while the square, symmetrical case is enlivened by reflections in the double-beveled glass and the sparkle of diamonds.The bracelet is sheathed in satin or in leather embossed with a gros-grain ribbon pattern, two stylistic tributes to the world of fashion. On gold models, the powdered tones of the dial reflect the sensuality of the padding that protects the inside of the trunks. On steel watches, the dial is either black or white, decorated with lines reminiscent of the wood paneling in classical Parisian apartments. The watch face has no numerals, simply the initials LV, with an unusual positioning at 5 o’clock, reminding us that style is timeless.


Tambour éVolution Spin Time GMT

Case : 18k pink gold bezel, horns and crown, ceramic aluminium middle (black MMC), sapphire back, water resistant to 100m Diameter : 45mm Movement : automatic movement (LV111 calibre developed and assembled by La Fabrique du Temps LV Manufacture, 42h power reserve), 233 components Functions : hours, minutes, two time zones ; the reference time via the Spin Time cubes and the local time via the hour hand Dial : aluminium cubes, 18k pink gold hands and index Bracelet : black calfskin and alligator with red topstitching and black calfskin lining, 18k pink gold pin buckle


Escale Worldtime

Case: polished and satin-brushed 18K white gold, sapphire back, lugs inspired by LV trunks Diameter: 41mm Movement: mechanical self-winding (Calibre LV106 La Fabrique du Temps, 38h power reserve, 218 parts Functions: hours, minutes, world time Dial: oil painting Water resistance : 30m Strap: hand-sewn black alligator leather with black calfskin lining, 18K white gold pin buckle


Emprise Steel and diamonds

Case : steel with diamonds, 50 m water resistance Diameter : 23 x 23 mm  Movement : quartz Functions : hours, minutes Dial : silver or black opalescent dial Strap : black calfskin strap with a grosgrain pattern


Emprise Gold

Case : 18k yellow gold case set with diamonds or not, 50 m water resistance Diameter : 23 x 23 mm  Movement : quartz Functions : hours, minutes Dial : silver opalescent with a quilted padding pattern Strap : black powdered satin

Rédacteur en chef des magazines GMT et Skippers dont il est le cofondateur depuis 2000 et 2001, Brice Lechevalier est aussi à la tête de WorldTempus depuis son intégration dans la société GMT Publishing, qu’il dirige en tant que co-actionnaire. Il a par ailleurs créé le Geneva Watch Tour en 2012 et conseille le Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève depuis 2011. Côté nautisme, il édite aussi le magazine de la Société Nautique de Genève depuis 2003, tout en étant membre fondateur des SUI Sailing Awards (les prix officiels de la voile suisse) depuis 2009 et du Concours d’Elégance de bateaux à moteur du Cannes Yachting Festival depuis 2015.

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