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Through her life, Gabrielle Chanel embodied strength, character and a fierce desire for independence. Maison CHANEL, avant-garde and constantly innovative, has come down through the decades to become an unmistakable symbol of distinction, elegance and refinement.


Gabrielle Chanel was born in 1883. After spending her childhood in an orphanage, she became a seamstress. She was very soon successful and moved into 21 rue Cambon in Paris, where she made hats with the “Chanel Mode” label. In 1913, she opened her first fashion boutique in Deauville followed, in 1915, by a fashion house in Biarritz. Her avant-garde style clearly set her apart from the fashions of her time.

By 1918, Gabrielle Chanel was running one of the largest fashion houses of the day. In the space of just a few years, she also took over numbers 27 to 31 rue Cambon, where the Fashion House named after her is still headquartered.

1921 marked the creation of the legendary CHANEL No. 5 by Ernest Beaux.

In 1932, Gabrielle Chanel made a remarkable entry into the world of Fine Jewellery with her “Diamond Jewellery” collection.

In 1935, Chanel was at the height of her fame. At that time she was heading up a company with a workforce of around four thousand people.

The Second World War obliged her to close down her fashion house. Only her store at 31 rue Cambon remained open. Perfumes and accessories were still successfully sold there.

Gabrielle Chanel made her great comeback in 1954. She was 71, and decided to begin her collection with a jersey suit, the No. 5. In 1955, she was crowned “the most influential designer of the twentieth century” and received a Fashion Oscar from Stanley Neiman Marcus, owner of the large fashion stores of that name in Dallas.

She died in 1971.

In 1987, CHANEL moved into watchmaking with the “Première” watch, opening its first dedicated store at 40 avenue Montaigne.

In 2000, CHANEL launched the iconic sporty and contemporary-looking J12. The traditional values of CHANEL were followed, including the famous Maison's colour codes: black and white. These colours are sublimated by the use of high-tech ceramic. 

Birth of Gabrielle Chanel.
CHANEL Watches founded; launch of the Première watch.
Launch of the J12 watch.
CHANEL takes part in the exclusive Baselworld show for the first time.
The “Première Tourbillon Volant” is awarded the Geneva Grand Prix d'Horlogerie in the “Ladies' Watch" category.

Through her life, Gabrielle Chanel embodied strength, character and a fierce desire for independence. Maison CHANEL, avant-garde and constantly innovative, has come down through the decades to become an unmistakable symbol of distinction, elegance and refinement.

All of the Firm's lines of business are characterised by its creativity, in particular watchmaking – influenced by the elegance of its famous seamstress founder and firmly rooted in all of the CHANEL codes.



This collection comes in 3 versions:

- Black : Chanel's first sports watch in ceramic, marking a complete style revolution.

- White : a spotless white that made this colour a must in watchmaking.

- Chromatic : the fruit of CHANEL's desire to give ceramic a new shade and particular sheen.

Mademoiselle Privé

Evocative of both femininity and exclusivity, this collection has a very particular significance: the words “Mademoiselle Privé” were written on the door of Gabrielle Chanel's workshop. This highly emblematic and symbolic collection combines jewellery and watchmaking expertise, paying tribute to the Craftsmanship cherished by the Maison.


Modelled on the shape of the Chanel No. 5 perfume cap and the proportions of Place Vendôme, its octagonal case is a condensed history of the Maison's core values.

Jewellery Watches

In its quest for perfection, CHANEL draws on twofold expertise that combines the long-standing tradition of its master jewellers since 1932 with watchmaking knowhow to develop themes cherished by Gabrielle Chanel, such as feathers and ribbons.


Chanel Première, J12, or Monsieur de Chanel ? Chanel ceramic, Chanel Chromatic titanium, ceramic & stainless steel, or yellow gold? With or without a diamond dial or diamond bezel? For ladies or men?

Let us guide you.

What are Chanel watches?

Gabrielle Chanel’s fashion company for ladies founded in 1910 quickly established the use of fine materials, avant-garde designs, and the colours black and beige as House codes. Redefining Parisian elegance, Mademoiselle Chanel soon followed with innovative perfumes, and jewellery boasting pearls and diamonds, but it was not until 1987 that the House of Chanel launched the first Chanel watch, for ladies, aptly named Chanel “Première”.

In the year 2000 Chanel took the watch world by surprise with a unisex watch – the “J12”. Round, chic, sporty and sleek, created for both men and ladies, water resistant to 200m, it especially brought a high-tech material – ceramic -- into the spotlight with its case in stainless steel and intense Chanel black ceramic and matching bracelet. Due to the resounding success, the J12 in Chanel white ceramic was launched three years later.

In 2008, a collaboration with Audemars Piguet boldly confirmed Chanel’s position in the Fine Watch segment with the exclusive automatic J12 Chanel AP-3125 calibre running three hands and a date inside a 42mm Chanel black ceramic and yellow gold case.

Research to create new materials resulted in the “J12 Chromatic” in titanium ceramic with a novel colour and unique brilliance that captures the changing effects of light, or the more recently developed 18K yellow gold alloy known as the Chanel Beige Gold for a subtle gold colour, seen with the Chanel J12-365 in Ceramic and Beige Gold.

In 2016, Chanel introduced the “Monsieur de Chanelwatch equipped with the brand’s first totally in-house movement – Chanel Calibre 1, followed in 2017 by Calibre 2, a Chanel automatic movement in the shape of a camelia – Gabrielle Chanel’s favourite flower -- to run the “Chanel Première Camélia Skeleton Watch” for ladies.

Chanel watches are made in the Chanel workshops in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, combining the best of creativity and design from France with the highest level of Swiss watchmaking expertise.

Everything you should know about Chanel Première

Designed for ladies, recognizable with an octagonal-shaped case inspired by Place Vendôme in Paris (like the bottle stopper of Chanel N°5 perfume), this first Chanel watch model was created in 18K yellow gold with a black-lacquered dial and equipped with a quartz movement. The line now also includes stainless steel and gold models with or without diamonds, enhanced with a multitude of straps and bracelets in gold and/or stainless steel and leather, and white mother-of-pearl or black dials, in sizes ranging from 22 x 16 x 6.2 mm to 28 x 20 x 6.6 mm. “Chanel Premièrewatches are equipped with quartz movements, with the exception of the new “Première Camélia Skeleton”, a ladies’ watch that boasts the fine watchmaking movement Chanel Calibre 2.

More about the J12 line, in Chanel black ceramic, Chanel white ceramic, and the Chanel J12 Chromatic in titanium ceramic

Designed for men and ladies, the J12 Chanel black ceramic and the J12 Chanel white ceramic models, equipped with high-precision quartz or automatic movements, come in sizes from 33mm to 42mm. An interesting line extension includes a chronograph, a diving model, a GMT model, and the Chanel J12 Tourbillon launched in 2006. In 2017, for ladies, a white or black ceramic and stainless steel 38mm model with unidirectional rotating bezel features a silhouette of Gabrielle Chanel on the dial. The retail price for this “Mademoiselle J12” limited edition of 555 pieces each is EUR6900.

The J12 Chromatic is crafted in a new material – titanium ceramic – that has to be seen to fully appreciate its unique reflection of light. Launched in 2011 with a grey dial in a titanium ceramic and stainless steel case, a blue dial version with matching blue alligator and nylon straps is equally superb. A model in titanium ceramic and white gold case with diamond bezel and indicators also exists.

If you’re a fan of lots of diamonds, the J12 line includes high jewelry pieces. The J12 d’Exception, or “J12-XS High Jewelry Watches” come in white gold or white gold and white ceramic, with brilliantly coloured gemstones or diamond dial, diamond bezel, diamond-set case and bracelet. The white gold model Reference H4937 in a numbered edition, completely set with brilliant-cut diamonds, is sold at a suggested retail price of EUR100,000.

The first in-house movement, for Monsieur de Chanel for men.

This first movement fully created by Chanel manufacturer is dedicated to the “Monsieur de Chanel” line, for men. CALIBRE 1 is a manual-winding mechanical movement with double complications of Instantaneous Jumping Hour and Retrograde Minutes, and small seconds. The digital hour display took 5 years to develop. Presented in the 40 mm round case x 10.4 mm thick specially developed for the MONSIEUR collection, this Chanel watch is water resistant to 30m. It is available in Chanel Beige Gold or white gold with an ivory dial, or in a Platinum version with a blue “Grand Feu” enamel dial or black dial.