Famous Watchmakers You Should Know | Top 4 Modern Day Watch Makers

Everybody knows brands like Rolex or Omega, but there are many independent watch makers you may not have heard of that are making waves in the industry. Here are 4 of our top picks.

1) Vianney Halter (54)

Vienney Halter Watch Maker - How Does Vienney Halter Look Like

Nationality: French

Location: St Croix, Switzerland

Website: vianney-halter.com

Brief History: Started his company in 1994 under the name of La Manufacture Janvier. Inspired by cult films, science fiction and antiquated mechanical devices, his designs in watches display a distinct style. Most famous for his Jules Vern steam punk style of watch, the Antiqua sells for $185,000 and he only produces about 20 watches a year.

2) Christophe Claret (55)

Christophe Claret Watch Maker - How Does Christophe Claret Look Like

Nationality: French

Location: Le Locle, Switzerland

Website: christopheclaret.com

Brief History: Started his company in 1991 under the name of Christophe Claret SA. Famous for making complicated and ostentatious designs, one of his commonly recognized pieces is his 21 Blackjack Watch which features a fully functioning blackjack table on the dial with a roulette wheel on the back. This watch sells for $194,000 and he produces fewer than 100 watches annually.

3) Francois-Paul Journe (60)

FP Journe Watchmaker - Who is FP Journe

Nationality: French

Location: Geneva, Switzerland

Website: fpjourne.com

Brief History: Started his company in 1999 under the name FP Journe with the motto that loosely translates to "[He] invented it and made it" which the company lives by, building the entire watch in house. Created one of the first tourbillions housed in a tantalum case during the Only Watch auction in 2015. His more commonly known watch is the Chronometre Bleu which sells for $23,500. F.P Journe produces about 800 watches annually.

4) Philippe Dufour (69)

Philippe Dufour Watch Maker - Who is Philippe Dufour

Nationality: Swiss

Location: Le Solliat, Switzerland

Website: dufourwatches.free.fr

Brief History: He is a one man operation, the famous grand master Philippe Dufour works from his workbench in a converted schoolroom. He is known for his minimalist and simple dial designs that is so pure it has so much more to it that meets the eye and ultra high-end watch movements that are incredibly well finished and beautiful. Most famously, his simplicity series fetches $75,000 and he produces about 10 of these watches a year.

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