It’s been 20 years since Louis Vuitton entered the world of watchmaking, and now, the French fashion house is celebrating with the launch of a new coffee-table book, Louis Vuitton: Tambour (Thames & Hudson).
To accompany more than 350 images and illustrations, Louis Vuitton enlisted French journalist and luxury goods expert Fabienne Reybaud—also the author of Watches: The Ultimate Guide (Assouline, 2010), Effortless Style: Casa Lopez (coauthored with Pierre Sauvage; Flammarion, 2018), Rolex: The Impossible Collection (Assouline, 2018) and Chanel: Fashion, Jewelry and Watches (Assouline, 2020)—who adds details of historical context and overall significance.
She begins by explaining that nothing about this timepiece is insignificant. Its name (translating to “drum” in English) may seem unusual, but it’s actually a nod to the piece’s equally unusual design, with a case that’s neither convex nor concave but a little bit of each. Beyond the obvious design elements, she explains, the Tambour’s release alone was an important moment in both the brand’s history as well as that of watchmaking; it marked the first time the brand entered the market of luxury watchmaking. Louis Vuitton made its own rules by building the design from scratch—a bold move at this moment in time.
Reybaud uses the book’s four chapters to explore the origins of this watch, the comprehensive history of Louis Vuitton timepieces, as well as the importance of the watchmaking work being done at its La Fabrique du Temps atelier in Geneva and beyond. And, of course, there are celebrities—the brand’s first ambassador dedicated to timepieces, Bradley Cooper, and others sporting the style including Pharrell Williams and Sean Connery.
Releasing on January 31, 2023, Louis Vuitton: Tambour will retail for $150. It makes the perfect coffee-table companion for watch enthusiasts, the fashion set, and historians alike.
Top: Louis Vuitton’s new 266-page hardcover, Tambour (Thames & Hudson), celebrates 20 years of Tambour timepieces (photo courtesy of Thames & Hudson).
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