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Maria Doulton: I've come to Basel to visit Louis Vuitton in this beautiful villa where they're showing their watch collection for 2015 and I've had a look at the women's watches. What stands out for me is the fact that these watches really capture the magic of the Louis Vuitton style. We all know the handbags have a magnetic appeal and of course the colour and creativity of the catwalk, but also Vuitton's famous history of making trunks. Nowhere more so I think than in the Chevron watches that pick up on a pattern designed by Nicolas Ghesquière, who is Vuitton's Creative Director, that he used in his summer 2015 ready to wear collection.
As the trend for smaller watches gains ground Vuitton presents this year two really petite little watches called the Tambour Monogram Bijou. The dials of these watches have a really rich, deeply etched pattern that is in the shape of a sunray and if you move the watch it catches the light both in the grooves and the ridges as well as that very dainty Monogram pattern. You'll recognise that the straps are made of the famous Epi leather that you see in Vuitton's handbags. The Bijou Riviere is of course the star and there are over 600 diamonds decorating this watch.
History, fashion and watchmaking come together in the new Emprise watches, the shape of the case is directly inspired by the trunks and all its details like the brass corners, but then we've got that bright denim blue which is so in fashion and that Nicolas Ghesquière used in his latest catwalk shows. The Malletage version picks up on the quilted pattern that was found on the inside of the early Vuitton steamer trunks.
Saving the most spectacular for the last, the Tambour Monogram Sun Tourbillon is a fine coming together of the best in watchmaking and Vuitton style. At its heart is a Tourbillon and it's the LV80 calibre and this was all created and developed at the Geneva workshops called La Fabrique du Temps that belong to Louis Vuitton. It just shows that fine watchmaking doesn't have to be serious, it can be glamorous and it can be very chic.
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