Why I Bought It And My Horological Journey To Buying A Vincent Deprez Tourbillon Classique Souscription Edition
I have been a passionate watch enthusiast for more than 25 years.
At first, I had the financial constraints of a student, so I spent my first ten years sporadically buying just a few watches and was interested in established mainstream brands like Rolex and Panerai.
After I started working and my watch budget increased, I started collecting watches from a few mainstream brands and developed a good relationship with a few authorized dealers.
However, thanks to visits to Baselworld, I became aware of, and started admiring, the work of independent watchmakers and boutique brands, including Laurent Ferrier, Kari Voutilainen, Urban Jurgensen, Akrivia, and Grönefeld.
However, while appreciating what these smaller independent brands were doing, I didn’t buy any as I was unsure how financially viable they were over the long term. One of my concerns was how would I have a watch serviced or repaired if the small brand went bankrupt.
And I was well aware of how difficult it was for the Indy watchmakers back then, as I knew a bit about how difficult it was for Laurent Ferrier, who I met at an independent watch fair in Geneva. Ferrier nearly lost his brand and business when his then-investor (an ex- motor racing friend of Laurent’s), pulled out.
Then my watch collecting pivoted
Then a couple of years later my feeling towards independent watchmakers evolved.
While still having a broad general view of the watch market from big to niche brands, I got ever more fed up with the way the big brands’ retailers treated their customers. The levels of service I was experiencing and hearing about from friends was something I couldn’t imagine ever doing or my clients putting up with in my own business.
The first watches from independent brands that I added to my collection were from the more affordable end of the market like Habring2 and Pascal Coyon.
By 2018, I became aware of just how good communicating with independent watchmakers was, especially when compared to the large brands, so I decided to focus more and more on this niche market. I dove right in and started collecting watches from all ends of the independent sector, including commissioning bespoke pieces.
I became comfortable ordering watches from Kari Voutilainen, Aaron Bexei, Roger Smith, Lecomte, Czapek, Svend Andersen, Julien Tixier, and Vincent Deprez.
I love everything about the watches from the independents, from watches in which the options are limited to case material or dial color all the way to bespoke unique timepieces.
While they are many different independent watchmakers out there, and many references to choose from, an article I read in March 2022 about the Vincent Deprez Tourbillon Classique the Souscription Edition immediately caught my eye. The watch appeared to have everything I was looking for: a distinctive case, open dial highlighting the mechanics, enameled dial, large tourbillon, and all nicely arranged.
After reading the article, I immediately contacted Vincent and again, as with almost all independent watchmakers I’ve dealt with, everything went smoothly. I felt pretty confident in what I learned, and rapidly decided to add a Vincent Deprez Tourbillon Classique to my collection. So rapidly in fact that I very fortunately managed to secure watch No. 1!
In the past, I would not have decided so quickly to purchase an unknown young newcomer; however, a few visits to Indy watchmakers in 2021/2022 opened my eyes. Although communication with independents was already an eye-opener compared to the battle I’ve had with authorized dealers, visiting their ateliers and having dinner/drinks and laughs with them confirmed that this was the watchmaking world for me.
I love how all independent watchmakers know and admire each other, even working together to create a better piece and having no problems in helping each other. And their openness about what they do themselves and what they outsource. Seeing all the work they do in making their much-beloved watches, I have absolutely no problem waiting many years before receiving a watch – the anticipation makes the long-awaited delivery all the better.
This all goes to explain how I came to order a Vincent Deprez Tourbillon Classique Souscription Edition quite quickly in March 2022, but I never expected that it would be ready to collect just a few months later in July. Communication with Vincent was excellent, but I do speak French which helped.
The 5th of July 2022 was D (for Deprez)-Day, when I went to Geneva to pick up my Tourbillon Classique Souscription Edition No.1.
We had a nice talk and Vincent handed me my watch. I immediately fell in love with it. The case, the finishing, the dimensions, everything fit perfectly. My best photos don’t capture the beautiful experience of actually seeing and handling it.
6-months of wearing
Now here I am around 6 months later, and the magic still hasn’t worn off. This is my watch of 2022! I am a watch collector who likes to wear my watches often, changing once and sometimes twice a day. If I don’t wear one of my watches at least five times a year, then I think that signals it’s time to let it go. I feel that a watch should have a life and be worn frequently to highlight and respect the artisanal work of the watchmaker and share with other horological aficionados.
I wear my Tourbillon Classique regularly during the week, at both work and on more formal occasions in the evening. And I am confident that I will wear it frequently over the coming years.
I can’t tell you how accurate it is because I don’t usually wear my watches for more than 12 hours a day, so they usually need winding and resetting when I next put them on. But I’ve had no issues with its reliability or accuracy to date.
If you are starting out on your collecting journey and are interested in independents, but are unsure about taking the leap (as I was), I cannot recommend independent watchmakers enough. But do wear your watches and show them to the world, I don’t understand collectors who lock up their watches in a safe and don’t wear them.
I have a few more interesting watches by independents on order, and I’m sure they will not be the last. Whatever your budget and collection, I wish you all of the enjoyment watch collecting has brought me.
For more information, please visit https://vincentdeprez.watch/
Quick Facts Vincent Deprez Tourbillon Classique Souscription Edition
Case: 39 x 11. 3 mm, 316L stainless steel, 30-meter water resistance
Dial: dark blue or cream-colored oven-fired enamel, 18 mm diameter
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds (indicated around tourbillon cage)
Movement: manually wound handmande caliber with one-minute tourbillion, high-level finishing, tourbillon cage 12.6 mm, tourbillon bridge 22.8 mm, balance spring with Breguet overcoil, 2.5 Hz/18,000 vph, 52-hour power reserve, handmade by Vincent Deprez using traditional tools and machines
Limitation: 10 pieces in stainless steel; movement will be limited to just 20 pieces overall
Price: (sold out) 89,500 Swiss francs (excluding shipping and any taxes)
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Hi Alex, hope you are doing well.
First I must say Congratulations on your beautiful new watch. I myself am considering adding a Deprez to my collection and just wanted to ask you since you’ve had alot of hands on experience with many of the indepenedent makers watches how does his work compare to that of Voutilainen, Bexei, Tixier etc. I would greatly appreciate your feedback. Thank you.
You have great collection..Roger Smith is master and holy grail for auctions,very rare-cca 180timepices will be made ,Kari is also one of the gratest in this era ..they are old school watchmakers..Venla Voutilainen is also top watchmaker…Kari have 9 GPHG ….top..Gronefeld brothers also made excelent job,designe is great,and they definitly deserve GPHG win last year..this Deprez is also very nice it’s reminds me on Greubel & Forsey or first F.P. Journe tourbillon,bery interested..all the best..
Congratulations on the new watch. It is quite striking. And you have a very nice collection of independents. I have two of them and agree it is a pleasure to work with them; I am also on several waiting lists but don’t mind the delay. It gives some time to save the funds for what can be a pricey purchase. The linked Deprez website says your Tourbillion watch is a now sold out limited edition of 10, 39 mm in diameter, and 89,500 Swiss francs.
A couple of editing comments. Unless you are remarkably well preserved I think you meant 2021 (not 1921) when you were reading about Deprez. Also, the fellow in the 6th picture that the caption labels as “author” has thinning hair and a beaded bracelet; he looks nothing like the “author” in the preceding two pictures.
I am looking forward to you future articles on independents.
Cheers and happy collecting!
Thank you for your comment William. That date typo was my fault and has been corrected and the image deleted.