Thank you, Richard. I'm not telling you anything you don't know from experience probably, but there can be a lot of tooling constraints working with a smaller brand (or sometimes a big brand as well). The budget being tight on this from both sides I didn't think it was a good use of dollars to open up a new case tooling, mainly because I thought their exiting field watch case is so beautifully done. Look at this side view below! That constrained our sandbox to dial graphics, band design, and CMF. Going in I thought we could really change the product with just these three levers.
The dial graphics are the most obvious here. When we did this they hand't released the Gent model yet and I hadn't seen it, so I thought removing some or all of the numeric indicators would move it away from models M1-17. You can see some of the earlier explorations in the second video above. We kept removing elements and turning down the contrast on markers until the only things that stood out were the 12 hour indices, the ring connecting them and of course the 021c second hand.
Next was the bands. Probably because of my automotive fixation, I've always loved microperf. One of the factories I used to work with in China stated speccing it as Michael-perf as a bit of a joke. Carpenter hadn't done any perfed straps so I thought this would be a good opportunity for them to open up a perf die so they could have it in the tool box for future styles.
Lastly, CMF. I wanted to go a bit dressier and really show off the generous radii of that case. So we high polished the case (much to the chagrin of my Photographer, Mike Lembke http://www.mikelembke.com
, who found it a pain to photograph what is basically a chrome sphere). The matte leather straps nicely contrast that.
The story behind the MD branding, I dropped it into one of the drawings of the case back and pitched it thinking it would come off, but thankfully the client was all about it. Originally it was supposed to be a die cut chrome foil to match the case but there were some issues executing that. Hopefully for next time.... there is always a next time
I was up in SF for a few meetings a couple of weeks ago. I wore #01 to all of the meetings. It was really cool when in a couple of those sessions people pointed out the watch unprompted!