Category Archives: Horology

Approximately 5-years ago I met with a gentleman called Christophe Hoppe who had co-founded a brand called Bausele. Even though Christophe originates from France he met his wife in Australia and now resides in Sydney. At the time he showed me visuals of a really cool watch concept. This timepiece eventually went into production and is called the Terra Australis. One of the most distinctive features of this watch is the lightweight ceramic granite type bezel (developed with Flinders University in Adelaide). Interestingly this material (trademarked Bauselite) is formed by injecting nano-particles of ceramic into molten rock. At the time this was considered pretty radical. However, since then brands have become even more experimental, especially with lightweight carbon composites. A great example is Romago Swiss who have developed the first bright red forged carbon watch (I am aware of). » Read more

A few years ago I visited Singapore to meet a few industry contacts including Alvin Lye. For those that are not familiar with Alvin, he is the Co-Founder and Executive Director Of Azimuth Watch Co. I believe this Avant-Garde brand really put Singapore on the map in terms of watchmaking. I also feel they have inspired many other designers to launch their own microbrands. In the last few months, I have featured several labels from this region including Achtung, Lytt Labs, Spectre Time and Zoid. Recently, I received a press release from another Singapore brand called Advisor. They have just launched an exciting timepiece on Kickstarter called the SUPA Diver Bronze. » Read more

Generally, when you think about Russian watchmaking there is one name that springs to mind. Of course, I am talking about the great Konstantin Chaykin who is an inspiration to watchmakers worldwide. I have featured Konstantin’s work on my website, in global magazines and in several books. He has produced favourites like the Carp Diem, Cinema, Joker, Levitas and Lunokhod Prime (which is featured on the cover of my ‘Independent Watchmakers’ book‘). However, there is also another less well-known craftsman, like Ruslan Skutte who are also making their mark with label Silverwood. » Read more

Since June 2019 Australia has encountered some of the worst bush fires in its history. The main states that have been affected are New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. It is estimated that the fires have affected 450 square miles of land and killed 1.25 billion animals. This type of devastation has attracted international media coverage and is a stark reminder of the effects of global warming. With temperatures exceeding 49 °C (120 °F) it is anticipated that this situation could get worse over the years. That is why the Australian government is making provisions for future needs. » Read more

Recently I travelled to Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia to spend News Years with a couple of good friends. I was amazed at the number of skyscrapers and luxurious malls within close proximity. There was even a theme park with a double corkscrew in one of the main shopping complexes. On my visit, I had the chance to meet Leong Wong, who was formerly the editor of Esquire Magazine (Singapore/Malaysia). Even though have worked for Leong I had previously never met him, person. That is why it was great to share lunch and discuss watches and the general state of the industry. One of the topics was the emergence of small microbrands who now release new models on crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter. A good example is Von Doren who have just launched an exciting watch called the URÆD. » Read more

In my capacity as an industrial designer and author, I have been privileged to meet many fascinating people. Freelance work is exceptionally rewarding but also can be solitary and precarious. That is why it important to surround yourself with likeminded people. Ultimately that is why I have always championed artisan craftsman and small microbrands. A great example is Guillaume Demerliac who is the owner of Demerliac Watches. Recently he sent me a press release unveiling two really cool timepieces called the Pearl Timer and Visir. » Read more

In the last few years, I co-designed several bespoke watches with my good friend Ben Birkett. His encyclopedic knowledge about mechanical timepieces and clocks is world-class. That is why his watch restoration business is thriving and he is constantly in demand. The building his premise is located comprises several workshops occupied by artisan craftsman. Ben recently informed me about a specialist engraver (in a neighbouring workshop) who had personalised an exclusive Audemars Piguet royal oak offshore tourbillon chronograph for a very wealthy customer. Ben didn’t divulge the price for the job but judging by the expression on his face I presume it was very expensive. » Read more

Since I began writing about watches approximately eight years ago the emergence of small micro brands has expanded exponentially. Recently when I visited Malaysia I discussed this topic with a good friend of mine called Leong Wong. He was formerly the editor for the of Esquire Magazine (Singapore/Malaysia) and I used to write for him on a regular basis. As we both are champions of independent watchmakers there was a lot of common ground. Predominantly, at that time I focused on Swiss mechanical watches. However, these days Japanese alternatives are very popular and very competitively priced. A great example is the Power Racing Black by Zoid. » Read more