When you can get tailor-made dresses and jewellery then why not a watch? Jaipur’s Gaurav Mehta, Founder and Director, of Jaipur Watch Company, makes custom-built watches and has given India its first homegrown bespoke watch brand, Jaipur Watch Company.
As a young history-obsessed child, Gaurav Mehta had a fetish for collecting historic coins and stamps. Mehta was fascinated by the stories and the history that came with every coin and over the years collected the myriad forms of the Indian currency coins along with a lot of other currencies. Drawing on this interest his collection expanded every year and eventually unlocked an undiscovered treasure trove of magnificent tales. Gaurav had this ingenious idea of fashioning his own, unique, one-of-a-kind timepiece. An expression of himself, an extension of his interests, one that would become his signature. This led to the very first Coin Watch.
Harbouring the hobby of numismatics and turning it into a passion to create the extraordinary, led to the establishment of Jaipur Watch Company in 2013. Gaurav Mehta founded Jaipur Watch Company as India’s first and only bespoke Watch Company. Today the brand aims to redefine horology with exceptional concepts revisiting an era to create mesmerising pieces of art. The beauty of the brand is that you can make your own watches with eclectic designs using antique coins, postage stamps, hand-painted images, and pictures of deities. Watches are made with calligraphy or jewel-encrusted dials. Luxebook spoke to Gaurav Mehta to know more about his journey, future plans and new developments at Jaipur Watch Company.
What motivated you to start Jaipur Watch Company?
Jaipur Watch Company is a business which has been built out of passion. From my childhood, I have been a fan of watches and coins. As an inquisitive child, I would open up my toys to see how they operate and I continued the same with my watches as I grew up. From my first salary, I purchased a watch for myself and to this date I buy, on average, one watches a week.
My love for watches and coins continued and one fine day when I was opening up a watch, there was a coin was lying next to me. Somehow it struck me to put it inside the watch and the watch mechanic in me did the job somehow. My journey in watchmaking began from there. I would get many compliments when I started wearing the same watch, even some potential orders from people to make the same for them. This was the moment when I realized my potential to combine both my passions and build a business around them.
With immense competition from the international market, how did you carve your niche?
My niche is my design, my story and my city. I come from Jaipur, a city known for its history, culture, and rich heritage. The city has inspired me in many ways to create designs which are India-centric. Our niche is our storytelling which is done via coins, art and even elements from India.
Tell us about some new developments we can expect to see from Jaipur Watch Collection.
We are launching 2 new collections, FiligreeII Writswear and Imperial III Automatic Wristwear. Having the original Filigree Wrist Wear collection completely sold out, Jaipur Watch Company is now launching Filigree II Wristwear, with a new colour, dimensions and movement.
Filigree II Wristwear
The Filigree II Wristwear features the Filigree technique which is a delicate embellishment in which skilled jewellers painstakingly solder fine, pliable threads of precious metal. These w are then twisted or curled into a beautiful artistic motif or design of the jewellery, or in this case, the Filigree Wristwear. This technique, which has been used for hundreds of years, can take the shape of gorgeous scroll-work, lacy flourishes, symmetrical Art-Deco style designs, and other fascinating motifs.
The coin used in this piece was a Copper King George VI – 1 Anna Coin from British India, from the year 1938-1947. This particular coin was selected as the centrepiece of the Filigree Wrist Wear because of its flower-shaped scallop design. The dodecagon curve represents the twelve hours of a timepiece.
Imperial III Automatic Wristwear
The third series of its maiden collection, Imperial III houses an antique 70-year-old King George VI coin. George VI was the last ruler of the British Empire and the first head of the Commonwealth. His reign witnessed the transition of India from a colony to a democracy.
These self-winding or automatic watches are crafted with an Automatic Miyota Movement from Citizen and have a power reserve of 50 hours. Sitting on top of the gold-plated case is a dome-shaped sapphire crystal. Inspired by the edges of a coin, the Bezel has a similar design. The watch has an analogue display and weighs 110 gm. This entire range of watches is water resistant and can resist water up to a depth of 50 meters (5 ATM).
Also with customization being the key, we are coming up with a new concept where one can have a customized watch in 15 mins!
One piece you love and why?
Very difficult for a parent to choose a favourite baby. But one watch which is very close to my heart is King Wristwear Collection. This happens to be on my wrist all the time among all the watches we have made, also this is our best seller product among all.
Key trends that will shape the watch industry this year?
You will see three trends driving the industry this year. Colourful watches in the men’s category, smaller sized watches are back and finally, the demand for customized timepieces is at an all-time high and this trend will lead to some interesting developments,
Today Jaipur Watch Company is worn by multiple Bollywood celebrities, do you plan to launch a re-sale program as well?
We are a young brand and I feel that one will very soon see our brands in the pre-owned market. There is an increasing demand for some of our limited edition watches which are now sold out on our website.
What are the plans for the future when it comes to your brand?
With 2 standalone stores this year we have shown the course for the coming years. You will see many standalone stores in the coming years and some very interesting launches.