We’re having a hectic week so our blog post came a bit later this week. We hope for your clemency. Without further ado, back to today’s story:
Lo and behold ! Last month we designed and assembled the first commissioned signature timepiece which marks the beginning of our journey offering this service. We believe all timepieces we make are special, but signature designs are the cherry on top. Now, before you start bashing me for having this preference, allow me to clarify. We go through our usual offers all the time and we ‘are told’ what to do with the watch and the choices fall in a narrower category. You want a lion on your strap ? We’ll propose you several lions and you choose OR you send us one and we make it happen (within reason).
We are rarely told the whole story behind the watch, the intimate details that allow us to make a masterpiece and most importantly, the freedom to exercise our creativity to deliver the best (based on our experience so far). So today, we’ll focus on the ‘how’ behind this process. We won’t go into details so you don’t get bored halfway through. We'll add the details of this order along side.
It all starts with the conceptualization. That alone takes around one week, bring the ideas on paper and turning it into the engraving format. We take in as much information as possible so we get it ‘right’. At the end, we make 2-3 proposals. Unlike our normal offers, there is significant back and forth with the customer making sure to articulate their needs, however abstracted it might sound, into concrete reality. Tangible and real.
Next is testing, we wake up sleeping Betty (our laser engraver for those don’t know) and send her the commands she need to ‘engrave’ or ‘cut’. Careful inspection follows to make sure everything is on-scale, the details are correctly expressed and more importantly, time-reading is not difficult on the dial with the hands. The testing is usually the most grueling part as it involves failures, many of them. Like any challenge we face, it is only a matter of time before we get over it. The hardest challenge in this order was to get two overlapping features on the engraving machine. We were able to do it by performing two engraving runs at two different intensities creating an 'overlay' effect
Then, we clean the dial up with good old acetone and we start the assembly process. By now, we understand well how to assemble the movement with the watch case, the hardest part being hands placement. Man, I tell you, those hands ! They were initially very hard to deal with which reflected in some of our early works in December 2020/January 2021. However, by now, we’re confident is what we’re doing. The last step is the sapphire glass placement and it’s over after some final checks. Upon completion, that pervading feeling of accomplishment is hard to describe, but it’s overwhelmingly fulfilling.
Once the case is taken care of, it’s the straps’ turn which is a easier and more forgiving. We extend the ‘theme’ presented in the watch case to the strap to make sure the fit is perfect. The stones used in the signature designs are among our most premium ones. To make sure we don’t forget it, we make a special photoshoot taking around 30 mins to 1 hour focusing on the small details with macro-shots (zoomed shots). In the box it goes, perfumed as per gender, ready for delivery. There’s a certain melancholy upon delivering that piece to our satisfied customer but we know it’s going to a wrist that will cherish it a lot more than our shelves here. That’s it for today.
Thank you for reading this far, it’s been ARH and you’ve been awesome. Stay safe. ARH out.