From design to finished product: how we make your watches
Ever wondered how your Mr Jones watch was made?
Keep reading to find out how our small team in London create such unique watches...
Our approach to finding collaborators isn’t as straight-forward and organised as you might expect. Often artists approach us with great ideas, and occasionally we reach out to them if we see their work and we think they could design something special.
Mr Jones Watches also began with pieces designed by our founder Crispin, now Crispin still designs a few watches per year but we mostly collaborate with other creatives.
Crispin designed watches in our permanent collection such as All this will pass, Sun and Moon, Cyclops, King, Queen, The Accurate and The Last Laugh.
You’ll notice that we love working with artists that specialise in different areas (such as tattoo artists and textile artists) - we make decisions about who to work with based on their ideas and visual styles.
The design process
Crispin (Mr Jones) will usually invite the collaborator to our workshop to talk through how our watches are made.
This is usually useful for the design process because different elements of the watch can be printed and the layered process means that designers have more freedom to create.
It also helps us talk through technical restraints with various movements.
Whether we are working with an artist or not, there is a lot of refinement to the original design and the whole team has an input (whether a watchmaker or not).
We create samples throughout the different stages of the design process, this helps us see what changes need to be made to make the design stronger.
We also review which case the watch should go in, how large the design should be and what strap it should have.
Sometimes we have a particular watch movement we want to use and then we design the watch around that, such as The Watchful Ones by Onorio D'Epiro.
When everything is decided on and we have our final sample, the first step is printing the dials.
Our print artist Paul manages all the printing with the help of Ellen, the machine they use is called a pad printer.
One colour can only be printed at a time on a design, some designs have to go through over 13 different printings because they are complicated with lots of colours.
Some designs also have different dimensions and aren't just one flat dial, so there are sometimes multiple parts to print.
As well as the dials, the case-backs are also engraved with the name of the watch, artists and Mr Jones Watches.
This is done by a laser engraving machine, to save our small team time this is usually done in batches.
When all the individual elements are printed and engraved, they are then ready to be assembled by our team of watchmakers and put into the watch case.
Each small step of the assembly is done to all of the watches at once to speed up the process.
All of our watch assembling is done by hand with tools, the watchmaking team all have a background in jewellery making as watchmaking is very intricate and requires a lot of patience.
When all the watches are in the cases, the last step is to add the straps and put a protective cover on both sides of the case.
When we have special orders that require personal case-back engraving or customisation such as changing of the strap, these are all done at one time.
Do you have any questions about our process? Follow us on social media to see more behind the scenes of the watch-making process.