INTRODUCING: Jaeger-LeCoultre's The Collectibles Capsule Collection
A carefully curated collection of rare vintage Jaeger-LeCoultre models for the Maison’s 190th anniversary.
Vintage fans, rejoice! This year is Jaeger-LeCoultre’s 190th, and to celebrate this milestone, the Maison has planned several programmes for 2023. While more will be revealed at the Watches & Wonders Geneva end-March, the watchmaker is launching a capsule collection that captures the horological highlights of its history.
The Collectibles (the programme sounds like a superhero franchise) is targeted at collectors and Jaeger-LeCoultre enthusiasts who wish to acquire vintage models in the brand’s history. The collection will become part of the brand’s perennial offerings, with new restored products introduced regularly for those looking for authentic, vintage Jaeger-LeCoultre timepieces.
Jaeger-LeCoultre is not the first brand in the Richemont Group to provide a curated, vintage range for its customers. Since 1996, Cartier’s Tradition collection/service has offered up rare gems of its watchmaking history for collectors. Likewise, Vacheron Constantin also curates and restores select vintage models that are offered to customers and has a Historiques collection that re-creates past iconic models for today’s watch aficionados.
The challenge, naturally, is the availability of products and finding models in good condition to restore. Jaeger-LeCoultre notes that it tries to minimise work on the dial and case to maintain authenticity. Through Jaeger-LeCoultre’s restoration workshop, which constitutes 10 professionals, the watches can be carefully restored to their finest condition. Luckily for Jaeger-LeCoultre, it has a well-kept archive of information regarding every watch it has ever made. There are even original parts for vintage models that still exist; if not, the Maison has a complete range of stamps and swages that it can use to reproduce them.
Catherine Rénier, CEO of Jaeger-LeCoultre, explains, “With Jaeger-LeCoultre’s most emblematic timepieces being increasingly sought-after by collectors, we are delighted to introduce The Collectibles. Together with a new master reference book for our Maison’s most emblematic models of the 20th century, this new programme presents a unique opportunity to acquire a piece of the Manufacture’s history.”
The first collection includes a Geophysic, a Memovox Parking, a Master Mariner Deep Sea, and a Shark Deep Sea. These models will be sold with an archive extract detailing its history, a new watch strap, and a copy of The Collectibles coffee-table book, which explores the key timepieces that have defined the brand’s history. Where available, the original box, papers, and strap or bracelet for the watch will also be provided.
The Collectibles book explores the brand’s success during five decades of the 20th century, from 1925 to 1974. Through the lens of its most successful models, it also serves as a historical guide to watchmaking during this period, as the industry was influenced by cultural, social, and lifestyle trends. Each chapter contains information on each of the 17 models, ranging from the Reverso to the Memovox. In addition, one can explore the similarities and differences between the original models and their modern evolutions.
The Collectibles programme will be available for discovery on Jaeger-LeCoultre’s website, with regular pieces added over time.
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