Next we meet Crispin Jones, the founder of London based watch brand Mr Jones Watches. We recently visited their boutique on the South Bank of the River Thames, just a short walk from Shakespeare’s Globe theatre. These are unusual watches which tell a story, start a conversation or simply make you smile.
We share Crispin’s thoughts and opinions on business and the future direction of Mr Jones Watches.
MWM: How is business?
CJ: Very good – we’re having a great year so far. Our most recent release, A Perfectly Useless Afternoon is a really strong design from a new artist for us (Kristof Devos) and it’s been really popular. We feel as a small team, that we’re really working well at the moment – from the design side, through printing and production to marketing and dispatch, everyone is taking real pride in their work.
MWM: What are you currently working on?
CJ: We’ve got two new designs that we’re working on in tandem at the moment, but they’re not really at the stage where we can share any specifics just yet – sorry!
Mainly my energy at the moment is taken up with planning for a new combined retail and production space which we are developing and hoping to move into before the end of this year, which is all very exciting.
MWM: Tell us something we don’t know about Mr Jones watches?
CJ: Hmm tricky, how about this for a stat: in the London workshop our small production team averaged 50 watches per week last year.
MWM: What watch do you wear?
CJ: Currently I’m wearing Robotto Shi, which I really like. Previously I’d been wearing the XL size Last Laugh Tattoo which I love and will probably go back to in a few weeks time (the case size and weight just feels really balanced for me)
MWM: Apart from your own brand, which watch would you like to own?
CJ: I’d love to own one of the Charles Frodsham wristwatches, or perhaps one of the Roger Smith hand made pieces. I really admire the skill and craftsmanship that goes into them, although I don’t suppose I’ll ever be able to afford one!
MWM: What do you like best about the Watch business?
CJ: I think watches are such fascinating objects – they carry so much about our personality, interests and tell people what’s important to us. I don’t think there are any other objects that really do all this, so for me I guess the scope for expression that watches offer, coupled with their functional, useful aspect.
MWM: What don’t you like about the Watch business?
CJ: I guess that it’s so conservative as a whole – I’d love it if there were more companies like us trying to do something a bit different, but most people just seem to be happy with copying what everyone else is doing…
MWM: What is next on the horizon for you?
CJ: The move to the new space is going to be really great for us as a company and I’m excited about it (also slightly daunted!) I’m looking forward to the next few releases which we’re working on – we’ve got some really interesting designs and trying some things in a new direction – can’t say any more just yet but keep watching our social media…