6 Luxury Watches By Fashion Brands That Celebrate Craftsmanship And Elegance
1/6 Emporio Armani
Giorgio Armani is the patron saint of Italian fashion, so it comes as no surprise that he’s expanded into the world of watchmaking. While there’s no shortage of covetable watches coming our way, Emporio Armani’s stand out from the crowd because of their high-precision movements combined with sophisticated silhouettes inspired by old-world elegance. And if there’s one man you can trust to steer you right, it’s Giorgio himself.
2/6 Louis Vuitton
Louis Vuitton’s acquisition of movement specialist La Fabrique du Temps in 2011 saw the maison spearhead fashion’s foray into the wider watch industry. The Tambour Spin Time Air features an in-house calibre, the LV88, a mechanical movement with automatic winding. Much more than high-end fashion watches that attract clients because of their brand‑name logos, Louis Vuitton’s timepieces champion exclusive and horologically legitimate mechanical movements that satisfy the demands of even the most discerning collectors.
Chanel timepieces cover all aspects of watchmaking, from day‑to-day wristwatches to awe-inspiring metiers d’art creations. To highlight its commitment to horology, it acquired watch manufacture G&F Châtelain in 1993 and set up a division to make in-house movements in 2011. Five years later, Chanel debuted the Calibre 1, its very first haute horlogerie movement designed and developed in‑house in collaboration with Romain Gauthier. Equipped with the movement, Chanel’s complex Monsieur de Chanel features an instant jumping hour and 240-degree retrograde minutes and small seconds display.
(Related: For Its 19th Birthday, The Chanel J12 Watch Gets A Facelift)
One of several fashion brands to have opened state-of-the-art manufactures in Switzerland’s watchmaking heartland, Dior has, despite scepticism from purists, enjoyed a surge in popularity for its automatic wristwatches that effortlessly blend couture-inspired design (think of the graceful swirl of a Dior ballgown) with exceptional mechanisms. The Inversé 11 1/2 calibre, for example, which is used in the Grand Bal collection alongside a functional oscillating weight that swings across the dial, elevates Dior’s creations from eye-catching accessories to timeless masterpieces.
(Related: Dior Grand Bal Watches: When Haute Couture Meets Haute Horlogerie)
Within Hermès’ recently released Arceau Petite Lune is the brand’s H1837 mechanical self-winding movement and moonphase module. Named after the founding date of the maison, this in-house calibre is yet another demonstration of the brand’s commitment to watchmaking tradition. There’s so much more to Hermès’ watches than meets the eye, and with more than 40 years of industry experience, the house has long perfected the art of marrying spectacular design with technical excellence.
(Related: Hermès Stays Original As A Whimsical Watchmaker With Two Novelties: Galop d’Hermès And Arceau L’Heure)
It’s been four years since Alessandro Michele was appointed Gucci’s creative director, and the trendsetting brand premiered a unisex line at Baselworld this year. Visually, these accessories are absolutely stunning—think resin tiger heads, glistening golden bees, and acid-green dials set against contrasting straps. Beyond aesthetics, mechanical movements elevate the brand’s reputation even further. Each watch features a transparent caseback so the wearer can admire the details and craftsmanship in all its glory.
(Related: Tatler 10: How To Shop Gucci’s Fall/Winter 2019 Collection)