“Dear Mr. Babin, I’m speaking as a fan, but you are sure making it difficult. It gives me no pleasure to take shots at you like this, but if you keep standing up and saying these things, I’ll keep rebutting you,” Ian Skellern begins his second open letter on this subject . . .
About Ian Skellern
I am the co-founder and technical editor of Quill & Pad. I am also a Swiss-based independent journalist specializing in high-end watches and founder of 'underthedial', a digital communication agency focusing on independent brands. I am also the author of 'Hands of Time,' a book celebrating the 25th anniversary of the AHCI (Académie Horlogère des Créateurs Indépendants).
Entries by Ian Skellern
Have you seen the prices of high-end (and not so high-end) wristwatches? Crazy! None of us can afford the watches that we want, and the world economy is tanking. So in the middle of the coronavirus crisis why are we still publishing pointless stories about watches and why are you still reading them? Ian Skellern shares his theory here.
The Naked Watchmaker (TNW), aka Peter Speake-Marin, does a series of deconstructions of a broad selection of modern Breguet watches and movements, starting with the Classique 5177, a relatively simple (for Breguet) three-hand dress watch with date. Here Ian shares a few details that The Naked Watchmaker didn’t reveal.
Despite feeling that Geneva Watch Days was wrong, hope, stupidity, and self-interest prevailed enough to cause Ian Skellern to hold off on canceling his accommodation in Geneva previously booked for the now-canceled Watches & Wonders 2020. He was hoping organizing brand Bulgari would cancel the event first and take the decision and uncertainty out of his hands. But it didn’t. Now’s the (well-overdue) time to say bye-bye to Geneva Watch Days 2020 in his opinion.
Ian Skellern’s feelings regarding the rapid series of announcements of watch events like the cancellation of Watches & Wonders and Baselworld as well as the full-steam-ahead project Geneva Watch Days have been equally quickly undulating: from initially being enthusiastically for, Ian ended feeling against Geneva Watch Days. Why put anyone’s health at risk, especially with perhaps little in return but a few photos and a persistent cough? But it is a tough call.
Blast from the past! This post is a “reprint” of an article Ian wrote that was first published on The PuristS in 2005 and it covers Felix Baumgartner, Urwerk, the Harry Winston Rare Timepieces Opus V, the Urwerk 103.03, plus an Urwerk 103.03 user review. Enjoy!
The most common choice for classic dress watches has to be gold, but have you ever wondered where that gold originally came from? And by “originally” Ian Skellern isn’t referring to a gold mine on earth but the original source of the gold before it even arrived on our planet. Spoiler alert: it involves an explosion, a very big explosion!
To mark its 50th anniversary in 2009, the International Museum of Horology in Le Locle, Switzerland launched an international chronometry competition. This effectively broke a long drought of 37 years since the last timing trial, which was held by the Observatory of Neuchâtel back in 1972. So what’s going on now?
There are a plethora of places to see in Porto − the city center is a UNESCO World Heritage site − but one absolute must for wine aficionados is to spend a couple of hours across the river Douro in Vila Nova de Gaia visiting a Port house and tasting the wines. Follow me on such a journey . . . saude!
Ian Skellern still remembers the sense of awe he felt when he had the opportunity to watch and listen to a recently restored centuries-old Jaquet Droz singing bird. The animation was compelling, and the quality of the birdsong sound was incredible. But as impressive a feat he thought that full-sized eighteenth-century Jaquet Droz singing bird clock was, shrinking that mechanical technology to wristwatch size is just mind-blowing. As The Naked Watchmaker, Peter Speake-Marin, highlights here.