Swiss watches have been around for a while, making their mark and offering people impeccable timepieces, more like jewels and exquisite craftsmanship. But most brands that incorporate traditional watchmaking techniques in their watches often come at a price. We however came across a unique micro-brand that stands for its handmade enamel timepieces at accessible prices – André Mouche.
Crafted in 1961, founded in Fahy, the Swiss Jura region by André Mouche and his wife Garcia, this brand created timepieces as jewels in a wide range of shapes and colors. Their manufacture in Fahy, in the beautiful and calm green backdrop of the Swiss Jura region, has been producing André Mouche watches for over 50 years. Being a relatively smaller micro-brand, they have complete control over all their technology, which is based on Swiss quartz movements that are dependable and precise, providing years of autonomy.
André Mouche, with their semi-rigid wristwatches with lids, decorated by brush, is one of the few brands in Switzerland that still hand-decorates its watches. The brand is constantly inventing new ornaments and models to cater to women across the globe: Néolia, Alambra, Aria, Aura, and the unique collection, the Lipstick, which has become an all-time classic.
In conversation with Didier Peter, the Managing Director of the company today, he said, “I’ve seen the company evolve over the decades. Back in 1980, I started learning about the watch industry and managed the gold plating department for 6 years. After the death of Mr. Mouche, I took over the company. Business challenges were many, but we could finally manage the production and business with our team.”
André Mouche’s timepieces are known for their craftsmanship at accessible price points. When asked what makes them unique, Didier said, “We do not view these pieces as watches. We view them as artistic jewels. With no second-hand watches available for our range; and paying respect to the quartz movement, we aim to create a niche for ourselves. We are not here to compete but make a mark as an accessory for women. Switzerland has fewer producers of enamel watches and, we pride in being unique. Our in-house production and enamel process, the key differentiating factor being the bangle watch at an accessible price range of 200-600 CHF, makes us stand out amongst other brands.”
The making of these watches is a long process. With a handmade enamelling process, the watches are first made on an off-white base, following which the colorful motifs are stamped on, color by color. Every time a color is stamped, it goes into their oven and, the process follows. These watches are made of a non-allergic alloy that has been coated with 18-carat gold or palladium. Each piece is processed, assembled, and decorated, as well as polished, while the caseback is covered with amethyst and crystals, entirely at the manufacture in Fahy. STUNNING!
How long does it take to make these watches, you may wonder? 30 minutes based on their daily projections. Yes! We were as shocked as you when Didier told us about the turnaround time. Ordinarily, they make 300-500 pieces of each color. With 17 people working at their manufacture pre-COVID and high production costs, the watches are sure to leave you spellbound, especially with that price tag!
COVID has changed the entire landscape, hitting every industry drastically. Sharing his views on its impact on the brand, Didier said, “The turnover this year has been 5-10% lower than 2019. Major tourist spots like Paris, Switzerland, Vienna have seen a low footfall, affecting our yearly sales. Our pre-pandemic production was around 35,000 pieces, however given the current circumstances that has dropped.”
For those wondering about buying an 18 Karat watch, André Mouche can also customize it to your choice. They are also open to the idea of exploring the higher price range and even manufacturing enamelled dial watches for men. They have made customised designs for India, Japan, and the USA. The André Mouche style appeals to all ages and genres of women, especially with their latest Lipstick pendant. An elegant and fun time teller, its demand in the Middle East has grown marvelously; with women wearing it as a pendant. Looking for a gift for the women in your life for any occasion? André Mouche is an ideal choice for a piece of jewellery that also functions as a watch.
With technology taking the forefront in the watch-making industry, can traditional Swiss-watchmaking be a dying art? André Mouche as a brand is viewed as more than a jewel for women. One does not wear our watch to tell the time. It is more of an artistic symbol for our wearers.”, says Peter.
These beautiful jewels are available in India exclusively at www.swisswatchcompany.com, a one of its kind e-commerce platform for Swiss brands in India. But how has India responded to these jewels by André Mouche? “With the shift to online shopping and more men buying watches online, positioning André Mouche as a gifting option has certainly increased the curiosity and demand. We are currently working on building the brand, however, André Mouche has already generated some interest and seen substantial organic traction,” says Arun D’Silva, co-founder of Swiss Watch Company.
“Indians have shown great interest in our timepieces and, the potential is high,” says Didier. No surprises here. The gifting culture in India has always been profound, but during the festivities, it is at its peak. With a culture so rich and diverse, we’re always looking for that unique touch to make our gifts special. And although it is nice to be generous while planning your gifts, you should always respect your own budget. Be it the gorgeous red Alizée Rose or the round-faced Alambra, André Mouche has options galore that range from beautifully enamelled watches to accessories that also tell the time.
About Swiss Watch Company:
Straight from the distributor to the end customer, with authentic watches & International warranties, Swiss Watch Company, assures you a credible and hassle-free shopping experience. With a pan-India delivery, they ensure a quick dispatch of your order (within 3-4 working days) depending of course on availability. Besides being a website exclusively for Swiss Watch Brands in India, Swiss Watch Company also houses lesser-known Swiss brands that are available on pre-order and imported from the manufacturers directly. This can also be paired with customisation or name engraving, etc. The company also offers an excellent after-sales service facility in Bangalore with a complimentary pick up and drop facility across India.