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Reservoir Watch

INTRODUCING: Reservoir x Label Noir x Popeye

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The sailor man offers a salute to modern watchmaking.  

Independent watchmaker Reservoir, known for its jumping hour and retrograde minute displays inspired by vintage gauges, is releasing a 200-piece limited edition model with Swiss watch customiser Label Noir. The watch features one of the greatest cartoon characters of all time, Popeye.

If you’re unfamiliar with Label Noir, it develops unique personalisations of mechanical timepieces for its clients. Founded in 2011, it has crafted many special models such as all-black Rolexes, distressed gold Audemars Piguets, and more. (It’s important to note that post-customisation, these watches lose their validity of guarantee from the brand itself.) 

The Reservoir Watch x Label Noir x Popeye watch features the cartoon sailor on the dial with a moving hand for the minutes display.
The Reservoir x Label Noir x Popeye watch features the cartoon sailor on the dial with a moving hand for the minutes display.

Label Noir is not the only customiser around or the only one that has collaborated with a watchmaker. Other famous companies include Pro Hunter and Bamford Watch Department, which famously has a partnership with Zenith.

Popeye’s Dabbing It Up

According to Reservoir founder, François Moreau, Popeye was chosen for this collaboration because “[he] is a very popular character around the world, and embodies boldness and determination. He is also a trans-generational comic strip hero”. Emmanuel Curti, CEO of Label Noir, also notes that “Popeye is very much in demand by our customers during personalisation”. That comes as a surprise to us, as we haven't seen too many Popeye pieces in the past.

A close-up view of the hand-painted Popeye  on the sandblasted grey dial of the Reservoir x Label Noir x Popeye watch.
A close-up view of the hand-painted Popeye on the sandblasted grey dial.

The watch is housed in a 41.5mm satin-finished titanium case with a matte grey DLC treatment. The sandblasted dial is in a similar grey hue with an applied, hand-painted Popeye, the left arm flexing and the right pointing to the minute track as a hand. In the first 30 minutes of each hour, it looks like he’s dabbing it up. Label Noir has chosen a classic Popeye with a black uniform rather than the white sailor’s outfit used in later versions of the character.

A large square aperture at 6 o’clock displays the jumping hour in a handwritten-style font, which is also used for the minute markers on the retrograde track. The slim bezel and extruding sapphire keep the design simple, with emphasis on the main spinach-popping character. He’s also seen on the reverse as part of the oscillating rotor – watch him swivel as you give the watch a whirl.

On the back of the watch, Popeye appears again on the rotor of the Reservoir Watch x Label Noir x Popeye watch.
On the back of the watch, Popeye appears again on the rotor of the Reservoir x Label Noir x Popeye watch.

The movement powering this piece is the RSV-240, based off a La Joux-Perret G100 calibre with Reservoir’s patented retrograde display module. It has a power reserve of 56 hours and comes with a grey nubuck leather strap featuring red stitching and a grey DLC-coated pin buckle.

The watch is presented in a white wooden box with an image of the Popeye Family, a painted figure of Popeye eating spinach, and a Popeye embroidered patch. Available on Label Noir’s website for CHF3,750 before taxes, it comes with free global delivery. This is a great holiday purchase if you’re a Popeye fan.   

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