Tag Archives: Label Noir

Label Noir Watches


Franco-Swiss watchmaker Reservoir presents the new Popeye limited edition timepiece created in collaboration with Geneva based bespoke watch specialist LabelNoir.

This new creation embodies the daring attitude of Popeye with the bold spirit of Reservoir and astonishing creativeness of LabelNoir.

Introduced to the world on January 17, 1929, by E.C. Segar in the “Thimble Theatre” comic series, Popeye from his debut has always been a rough-and-tumble, spinach-loving underdog.

True to himself as a mean-muggin’ man with a heart of gold, the sailor became one of the most popular characters of 20th century through comic strips, radio shows, television programs, and eventually both animated and live-action films. In this latest collaborative timepiece, the sailor’s salty spirit finds its latest canvas.

The 41.5mm diameter titanium watch recalls classic Reservoir styles, with slightly curved lugs and a signature knurling on its unique crown placing the model in the fantastic canon of the brand. The case is clad in the grey DLC— the color scheme courtesy of LabelNoir— with a satin finish used throughout that adds to the model’s bold style.

Endowed with a water resistance of 5 ATM (50m), the watch comes with a grey nubuck leather strap with red & grey stitching and a matching grey DLC pin buckle.

Beneath the anti-reflective sapphire crystal, the highlight of the Reservoir model is on display. Making smart use of a grey dial, a picture of Popeye in full charge is hand painted upon it. Faithful touches of color in the image help make it quickly striking against its dark background, with bright white accenting in the comic-style indices assisting in the high legibility for the novelty.

The dial features the emblematic 240° retrograde configuration, with the minutes displayed upon three- fourths of the surface and the running hours indicated in a prominent view via a bordered digital display at the comic icon’s feet. Popeye’s massive arm indicates the running minutes, sweeping from “00” to “60” and then snapping back again at the top of each hour.

Driving the Reservoir x LabelNoir x Popeye watch is the Reservoir Calibre RSV-240, a next-generation automatic movement introduced by the watchmaker in the spring of 2022. Produced in association with the Swiss engine manufacture TELOS, the self-winding mechanism makes use of a LJP-G100 base with a patented, proprietary 113-pieces module, with it optimized for Reservoir watches and the maker’s unique style of timekeeping.

The Cal. RSV-240 powers retrograde minute and jumping hour on display via the dial, with a 56-hour power reserve. The movement and its Reservoir-signed rotor are elegantly finished with Geneva stripes and radial style brushing, all visible via an exhibition sapphire case back itself adorned with a winking Popeye painted at its center.

The new Reservoir x LabelNoir x Popeye watch is a limited series of 200 pieces. Available now from Reservoir-watch.com, its suggested retail price is 4,700€/ 4,350 £ including taxes.

Each numbered model is presented in a white wooden box adorned with an image of “The Popeye Family”, an additional Chrome Painted Figurine “Popeye eating spinach” and a special embroidery in honor of Popeye. A certificate of authenticity accompanies the box.

Technical details

Model: Reservoir x LabelNoir x Popeye watch
Ref: RSV04.PO/433

41.5mm, Grey DLC Titanium Case with Satin Finish
Screw-down Crown
Open case-back, with exclusive “Popeye” character glass paint application
Anti-reflective Sapphire Crystal
Water-resistance: 5ATM

Grey dial with hand painted “Popeye” pattern
White Index

Retrograde Minute, Jumping Hour
Calibre RSV-240: Manufacture Self-winding Mechanical Movement, Patented proprietary 113-pieces module (LJP G100 base)
56-Hour Power Reserve
28,800 alt./h
Swiss Made

Taupe Grey Nubuck Leather Strap with Red Stitching, 22 mm Width
Grey DLC Pin Buckle

White Wooden Box with an image of “The Popeye Family” (© 2022 King Features Syndicate ™ Hearst Holdings, Inc.)
Additional Chrome Painted Figurine “Popeye eating spinach”
Additional Special Embroidery with “Popeye”
Certificate of Authenticity

Limited edition of 200 pieces

4’700 €TTC, 4’350 £ incl taxes, 4’450 $ w/o taxes MSRP, 4’700 CHF incl taxes

From January 2023

Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir Limited Edition

Swiss watch brand Louis Erard has released a limited edition series created in collaboration with Label Noir – a Geneva-based independent atelier specialized in the bespoke watchmaking segment.

Limited to 178 pieces, this collaborative watch is based on the iconic regulator watch from Louis Erard.

The Le Régulateur Louis Erard X Label Noir watch features a satin-finished black dial with two sub-dials and the signature fir tree hands. The details (markers and texts) in white and acid-green colors enhance the uniqueness of this special creation.

Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir is all about depth. Label Noir has redesigned the regulator in its own way of reading the time: first the hour, then the minute, then the seconds. This order of reading led to graduated finishes, from true matte to a glossy sheen.

The small hour dial in glossy black finish is highlighted by a thread of mirror-polished steel. The rest of the dial is in vertically brushed matte, accentuating the contrast, while the case is treated in matte black so as not to interfere with the dial. This timepiece features rhodium-plated hour and minute hands and green lacquered second hand. The main dial and the small-seconds counter have white and green transfers.

Driven by the Sellita SW266-1 automatic movement, the watch has a power reserve of 38 hours. The sandblasted stainless steel case with black PVD coating measures 42mm in diameter. Equipped with an open-worked rotor, the decorated élaboré grade self-winding mechanical calibre is visible through the transparent green caseback.

The black Cordura woven fabric strap with green stitching perfectly harmonises with the colour theme of the dial.

Technical details

Model: Le Régulateur Louis Erard x Label Noir ref. 85237NN57

Automatic regulator, Sellita SW266-1 calibre, 11½’’’, Ø25.60 mm, height: 5.60 mm, 31 jewels, 28,800 VpH (4Hz), élaboré grade movement, meticulously decorated, special open-worked oscillating weight with black lacquered Louis Erard symbol, approx. 38 hours of power reserve

Hour hand at 12 o’clock, central minute hand, second hand at 6 o’clock

Sandblasted stainless steel with black PVD coating, Ø42 mm, lug width: 22 mm, lug to lug: 49.60 mm, thickness: 12.25 mm, 3 pieces, domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on both sides, movement visible through the transparent green caseback, water resistant up to a pressure of 5 bars (50 m/165 ft), signature fir tree crown, caseback engraved with “Limited Edition 1 of 178”

Black dial
Satin finish at 6-12 o’clock with white and green transfers, polished black lacquer counter at 12 o’clock with polished rhodium-plated ring and white transfer, counter at 6 o’clock with white and green transfers. Logos Louis Erard X Label Noir at 3 o’clock
Hands: Signature fir tree hands, rhodium-plated hour and minute hands and green lacquered second hand

Black nylon with green stitching, black calf leather lining, sandblasted stainless steel pin buckle with black PVD coating, functional catch spring bars enabling the strap to be changed quickly
Dimensions: 22/20mm width, 80/115mm length

Limited edition of 178 pieces

Recommended retail price
CHF 3,500

The Daytona Skeleton by Label Noir

Headed by watchmaker Emmanuel Curti, Label Noir is a specialist in the customization of high end wristwatches. The atelier extends its co-contracting services to such wristwatch aficionados who, in addition to acquiring sought-after models, delight in adding a personal touch to them, often synonymous with unique pieces or even limited editions. The Daytona Skeleton is the latest project from Label Noir.

The Daytona Skeleton by Label Noir

Watchmaker Emmanuel Curti, CEO of Label Noir, loves such clients because madness is synonymous with challenge. And when respect for fine mechanical watchmaking is matched by innovative creativity in terms of finishing and closures, the exercise requires the entire range of expertise in watchmaking excellence.

In 2018, for an elite client, Label Noir customized a Rolex Milgauss watch by incorporating the Tourbillon complication. This year, Label Noir surprises us again by unveiling the Daytona skeleton, a customized Rolex Daytona automatic chronograph.

The art of Skeletonization involves stripping each component of a watch movement of as much material as possible, without taking the risk of weakening its load-bearing structures or impairing its precision.

In this skeletonised masterpiece, all the original components of the famous calibre 4130 have been preciously preserved except the oscillating mass that usually made of a heavy steel and brass alloy. In this Daytona Skeleton which has become LNSK010-01 (LN for Label Noir), the oscillating mass is made of platinum. The transparent bottom allows you to admire it.

The Daytona Skeleton by Label Noir features a systematic inversion between polished and satin finishes using the SuperMattLight technique. As a result, what was shiny in the original Daytona becomes matt in this squellete version, and vice versa.

It’s sober, deliciously organic, particularly uncluttered. Like the hands and the bezel, which seem to have escaped any modification, the familiar crown, the distinctive sign of Rolex, has been preserved at 12 o’clock, as the culmination of an inner bezel on which some SuperLuminova tips have been sprinkled. As for the push-button protection devices, they have been kept as they are.

Daytona Rolex Tourbillon by Label Noir

This extremely crazy custom watch project was undertaken by Label Noir, a luxury brand entirely dedicated to personalization of high end wristwatches.

Firstly, this is an authentic Daytona whose look is inspired by the mythical Paul Newman except that on closer examination, a tourbillon appeared instead of the seconds counter at 6:00 am. Produced on special order for a customer who wishes to remain anonymous, this unique piece will be delivered after four exhibitions: Geneva, Paris, St-Tropez and Monaco.

Before being released to its owner, this very first Daytona Tourbillon in watchmaking history is in safe custody with watchmaker Emmanuel Curti, a member of the venerable Société Suisse de Chronométrie (SSC) and CEO of Label Noir.

It is difficult to measure the level of madness that sometimes prevails in the world of collectors. The most affected, satiated to possess all forms of rarities or treasures among the most in demand, venture into the limitless path of personalization. They would even be ready to require the modification of a legend caliber. Thus they can associate their name with mythical models to which they bring a touch of their personality, as was the practice at the origins of watchmaking.

From a Rolex Daytona reference N° 116520 series model, which no longer appears in the catalogue since it has been replaced by reference 116500 (ceramic bezel), Label Noir has agreed to offer its customer the fulfillment of its wish, with respect for the fundamentals of watchmaking and in the context of uncompromising ethics: to add a tourbillon to the 4130 caliber of his Daytona, the complication of complications.

And by the way, soaking the piece in an aesthetic bath that gives it a visual coziness with the most mythical of timepieces, the famous Paul Newman steel watch dating from the 1970s and still the most expensive wristwatch ever sold to this day.

The transplantation of regulating organs has been successful. The seconds counter positioned at 6 o’clock has been erased to make way for a superb tourbillon whose frame uses the letters LN from Label Noir. It is worth noting that this complication, whose cage turns in one minute, also epitomizes the indication of the seconds in the form of a hypnotic kinetic ballet.

The height of watchmaking expertise: Label Noir’s golden fingers respectfully and humbly lean towards the heart of a legendary timepiece, the Daytona, the flagship model of a legendary brand, Rolex. As for the third legend, it is the complication of the tourbillon, invented by Abraham-Louis Breguet in order to avoid the negative effects of gravity on the precision of a watch. Already in September 2018, in Geneva and on behalf of a Qatari customer, a similar transplant had been successfully performed on a Milgauss that had become, the very first Rolex Tourbillon in history.

Doing everything possible to ensure that as many components as possible of the original Rolex calibre are kept, this is the challenge that Label Noir has risen to. The 4130 caliber was completely dismantled, the 61 components that had become useless were removed, especially those of the small seconds hand mechanism indicated at 6:00 am. Only the base plate that still holds the original Rolex engravings has been modified.

Then 93 components related to the tourbillon and its cage were added. Used materials: brass and steel. Increasing the force of the barrel spring since it must now be able to move a Tourbillon, increases the oscillations of the mechanical calibre from 4 Hertz, or 28,800 vibrations per hour, to 3 Hertz, or 21,600 vibrations per hour.

The successful operation created real connection challenges. Micromechanical surgery coupled with a mastery of finishes since it will have been necessary, in order to preserve the box and its original waterproofness, to raise the glass, to manufacture a larger joint. The original base dial in brass has been sprayed matt in vintage mode.

Rolex Tourbillon by Label Noir

Switzerland based luxury watch firm Label Noir has just unveiled a custom made Rolex watch equipped with a tourbillon complication. Specially customized for a client, it is the 1st Rolex Tourbillon in watchmaking history.

Rolex is one of the most admired luxury watch brands in the world. But, in horological point of view, the brand does not offer any high complication timepieces in their collection. Regarding this subject, following two questions frequently make rounds in various forums related to horology.

Does Rolex make tourbillon watches? Why doesn’t Rolex make a tourbillon? These questions are also applicable to Minute repeater and perpetual calendars because under Rolex brand you cannot find these watch making complications.

Does a Rolex tourbillon watch exist? Unless historical information has never been revealed before, it seems unlikely that Rolex has ever produced a Tourbillon watch in its past. I believe that Rolex never ventured into the field of high complications such as minute repeaters, perpetual calendars and tourbillons. Recently, I have read somewhere about the existence of a unique Rolex perpetual calendar watch that was actually created by the renowned watch maker Franck Muller by modifying a Rolex Datejust watch.

Most of the major luxury watch manufactures in Switzerland produce tourbillon watches. Even medium, independent and small brands have at least one tourbillon watch model in their catalog. But Rolex never produced a tourbillon watch in its history. I think producing high complication watches are not included in the Rolex business strategy instead; they stick to extensive research and development for improving metallurgy of watch parts and precision of mechanical watch movements of existing watch models.

A Rolex Milgauss with the complication of the Tourbillon!
Who can realize such a dream of a crazy Rolex watch enthusiast? Everyone knows that there is no such possibility exists as per the Rolex catalog. But if you are much passionate to own such an unbelievable timepiece, Label Noir can offer solutions that suitable for you.

Based in Geneva, Label Noir offers customized enhancements for high end luxury watches manufactured by prestigious brands. The personalization of high luxury watches includes custom engravings, adding special figures, insignias, symbols and logos, modifications like changing the position of crowns, fitting sapphire crystal case backs, special coating techniques like Magmatic Moon Coating (MMC) and even modification of movements and functions.

Sometimes back, a crazy customer who wishes to remain anonymous has approached Label Noir to create a Rolex of his dreams, a Rolex watch with tourbillon complication. Label Noir watchmaker Emmanuel Curti has accepted this challenge and it took three months to realize this unique horological masterpiece. And, if you have similar request, waiting time is three months!

This Rolex tourbillon timepiece was unveiled in Geneva at the Swiss Made Restaurant in September 2018. Worthy of becoming a legend, this watch has been entrusted by Label Noir to the most talented watchmakers and above all, the most faithful to the original watchmaking virtues.

This custom made timepiece merges two legends: First there is the Rolex, the brand of brands. Then there is the other legend, the tourbillon, a complication invented by Abraham Louis Breguet that has become the queen of watchmaking highlights.

What enhances the appeal of the challenge and approach is that at no time did Emmanuel Curtis, watchmaker and CEO of Label Noir, imagine replacing the original Milgauss calibre received from his customer with a tourbillon calibre of a size compatible with the space given.

The idea was rather to keep as many original components as possible. Thus it was necessary to rework the watch plate, which still has its factory number. Then, it was necessary to “delicately” tear off the heart of the watch, its birth escapement (the balance-spring pair) in order to implant the “tourbillon cage”, its new regulating organ.

Obviously, the operation created real challenges in terms of connections. Micromechanical surgery coupled with a science of finishings since it was also necessary to open a window in the dial while keeping the indexes and other initial inscriptions.

The ultimate luxury brand Label Noir is a signature entirely dedicated to personalization. It is part of the TwentyFirst Luxury Group (Concept Stores Nous, Hadoro), headed by Emmanuel Collomb. It is therefore already used to dealing with all kinds of requests for the transformation of watches. Its entrepreneurial foundation is the result of the specialized know-how of the excellent watch co-contracting industry.

Basic model in steel, Milgauss, all-steel bezel (not ceramic). On the Rolex calibre reference
3131, 51 components have been removed, 2 components modified and 94 components added. From 28,000 vibrations per hour, the frequency has been changed to 21,600, from 4 to 3 hertz. The thickness of the case has been preserved, including the dial and hands. The flying tourbillon is installed on a ball-bearing. It makes one turn in 1 minute. To date, it is the only Rolex Tourbillon watch known.