Jaeger-LeCoultre Atelier Reverso on test
Customising your watch is one thing, but getting a completely bespoke piece is quite another. This is what Jaeger-LeCoultre is proposing, with its custom workshop devoted entirely to the Reverso: the Atelier Reverso. WorldTempus was given an exclusive foretaste.
Eventually there will be Ateliers Reverso in every one of Jaeger-LeCoultre’s boutiques worldwide, but for the time being there are just two: in London and Paris. It was in the Place Vendôme that WorldTempus had an exclusive opportunity to try out one of the maison’s first Ateliers first-hand.
A new creative model
Behind the generic name “Atelier” there’s a very unusual eco-horological model, which gives customers the possibility to have their very own Reverso made directly by the manufacture. While not all references are available for customisation, there are currently three: the Reverso One, Classic and Tribute. All three were presented at SIHH 2016.
The Ateliers will be located in Jaeger-LeCoultre’s standalone shops, where they have their own dedicated space called simply the “Atelier Reverso”, seamlessly integrated into the store’s interior design. The creative centre of this area is a digital table driven by a piece of software designed exclusively for Jaeger-LeCoultre.
It is logical, intuitive, bug-free (quite an achievement for such a recent and exclusive development), and supremely easy to navigate. Rather than offering your typical linear progression of options (choice of model with successive personalisation options, confirmation, checkout), the software can cope with a change of model at any time, allowing you to try out an infinite combination of straps and engravings, change your mind constantly, skip a couple of steps... have fun, in other words.
Because, at the heart of the Atelier Reverso, is the concept of playing around and having fun while building one’s own personal creation. It is about methodically building one’s own watch, but it’s equally about exploring a limitless creative universe. Seven Reverso references, 49 dials and colour options, 800 straps and bracelets combine to make a total of 5277 combinations, so the playing field is vast. As a side note, the software is already available in more than ten languages – an undeniable advantage that speaks volumes about its potential internationally.
Creation in the Reverso spirit
Of course, there’s one obvious question. “Is anything possible?” And the answer is clearly: “No.” Jaeger-LeCoultre has limited the number of customisable models to three, and gives options in terms of engraving, straps, gem-setting and a range of dial choices. The Atelier offers more than 150 dial variations for the back of the new Reverso Duetto and Duo watches, a hundred or so choices of strap (different colours, different leathers and satin) for the entire Reverso collection, and a range of possible engravings for the one-sided Reversos. The digital table provides a real-time preview of the result and, when you’re finished, you can email them to yourself with their corresponding prices.
The company does impose a few limits, however. With an icon like the Reverso you can’t expect to have carte blanche, and that’s got to be a good thing. So you can’t touch the hands, for example. More regrettably, perhaps, no double-wrapped straps are allowed, despite being very popular at the moment. It’s nevertheless perhaps not an option that would occur to 80-year-old dowagers.
A 30% deposit is payable on receipt of the order, after which it takes an average of eight weeks before you can have the object of your desire on your wrist. All these creations must be collected in person from a Jaeger-LeCoultre boutique, which means a choice of 89 points of sale worldwide.
Jaeger-LeCoultre: HOME OF FINE WATCHMAKING SINCE 1833. Located in the serene setting of the Vallée de Joux, our Maison radiates a unique sense of belonging. The soul of La Grande Maison is formed here, inspired by the exceptional landscapes of the Jura Mountains, guided by an unquenchable inner fire. With all crafts under one roof within the Manufacture, watchmakers, engineers, designers and artisans work together to give birth to fine...Find out more >
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