H. Moser & Cie Endeavour Black Tourbillon at SalonQP 2015

SalonQP 2015 Roundup With A Few Of My Favorite Watches From The Fair

The Saatchi Gallery on Kings Road in trendy Chelsea has played host to SalonQP in London for the past four years. It is a fantastic venue and a great place for the brands attending to showcase their wares.

What an eclectic mix of brands and watches on show this year, too! Come with me on a virtual tour.

Vianney Halter Antiqua perpetual calendar in white gold

Is Independent Creative Horology Dead?

In the early 1990s, I was facing the same dilemma as today: should I buy modern or vintage? The problem was that the modern watches actually all looked vintage, right down to the sizes. There was something lacking, and watch shopping at times almost felt like perusing the yogurt section in a Soviet supermarket.

I’m obviously exaggerating here, but in general it seemed to me that creativity was more or less an afterthought.

Enter Vianney Halter in 1998 with the Antiqua Perpetual. And then what happened next: the birth of ICH (“independent creative horology”).

The Time Bandit concept for the Opus 5 had a slot machine type indications. The time would display after pulling the handle and the rollers stopped spinning around

The Urwerk Opus 5 For Harry Winston That Almost Was

The Opus 5 by Felix Baumgartner/Urwerk for Harry Winston is one of the best of this series of exceptional timepieces. But, as this drawing by Urwerk designer Martin Frei from June of 2003 shows, one of the original ideas behind Urwerk’s Opus 5 was a digital display in a model christened with the working title “Time Bandit.”

Greubel Forsey Double Balancier

Why You Shouldn’t Get Your Better Half Interested In Watches

“What, another watch?” she almost screamed in disbelief no sooner than I had opened the front door to our little love nest. Rewind to last week. I had been looking for a Roger Smith Series 1 for some time now, and Jones, my watch dealer, happened to finally locate one. I thought that I had played it pretty safe, so I really don’t know how she could have noticed. But then what happened next changed the rest of my life.

2005: Harry Winston Opus V by Urwerk

The Harry Winston Opus Series: A Complete Overview From Opus 1 Through Opus 13

Following the Swatch Group’s takeover of Harry Winston, a continuation of the Opus series with an Opus 14 seemed in doubt to me, though at Baselworld 2015 Dr. Nayla Hayek, chair of the Swatch Group’s board of directors and CEO of Harry Winston, quietly let it be known that a Harry Winston Opus 14 is forthcoming. What better reason to take a look back at the history-making timepieces of the Opus series.

Urwerk UR-1001 Zeit Device starring in "Easy Rider 2"

The Urwerk UR-1001 Zeit Device Goes ‘Easy Rider’

“It’s not a pocket watch,” Felix Baumgartner, Urwerk’s co-founder and chief watchmaker, emphasized to me, “It’s a ‘Zeit Device’.” This ultra-complicated calendar-cum-pocket watch is one of the most unique timepieces in the horological world today. Enjoy its starring role in this new ‘Easy Rider’-style video.

The stunning De Bethune DB25T Zodiac on the wrist

SIHH 2015 Photo Essay Sunday: De Bethune, Urwerk, Laurent Ferrier, Revelation, Christophe Claret, Speake-Marin

Paradoxically, the SIHH really begins at least a day before its doors open; Sunday is the time to visit the smaller brands holding private exhibitions Geneva. So we put on our Sunday best and headed into town for a busy day of meetings with De Bethune, Urwerk, Laurent Ferrier, Revelation, Christophe Claret, Speake-Marin.

The Urwerk UR-110 "Eastwood" with Ebony bezel and Duke of Windsor tweed strap. The triangles are tailor's chalk for marking cloth

The Urwerk UR-110 Eastwood: A Tailor-Made Farewell Of Timber And Tweed

The fact is that Urwerk is a small brand, albeit an extremely imaginative and talented small brand, with very limited resources available. That means that if Urwerk wants to use resources to develop and produce a new model, it first has to stop producing one of the older models. So unfortunately it’s soon to be bye-bye to the UR-110. But fortunately it’s hello to the final UR-110 model: the “Eastwood”!

SalonQP 2014

Roundup of SalonQP 2014: London’s Premier Watch Exhibition

SalonQP, London’s premier watch exhibition, ran from the 6th through the 8th of November 2014 at the prestigious Saatchi Art Gallery in central London. It was bigger and better than ever in terms of both size and visitor numbers.

Read on for more than just a few reasons (and lots of photos) why SalonQP is my favorite watch exhibition.

The top prize of the Aiguille d'Or goes to the Breguet Classique Chronométrie

Reflections On The 2014 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève

In this final round table discussion, my Quill & Pad colleagues Ian, Joshua, Gary and I discuss the amazing night that was. I am glad to talk about this incredible event and provide a few behind-the-scenes insights. Being on the jury for the third time in a row this year, I knew what to expect and could relax enough to enjoy the discussions and preparations.