Yesterday I shipped my final watch, which isn't something I thought I would be saying anytime soon. Together with 10 final clocks and a small batch of candles the past fortnight has seen every single item sell out from my small collection. I am entirely 100% dumbfounded... This update is something I thought I would be writing in November, not in June.
Three weeks ago I set about assembling my final batch of 30 watches which I had intended on selling over the remainder of the year — thus bringing NTN and the Time & Space collection to a natural close towards the back end of 2018. When these concluding pieces were fully built I posted several updates to let everyone know, and what has happened in the time since then has been pretty incredible as everything completely sold out within weeks. I'm writing this post both to express my gratitude to everyone and to answer some of the recurring questions which have popped up over this period.
Firstly, Thank You!
Apart from being dumbfounded I am also seriously humbled by this experience and feel very grateful. In between frantically fulfilling orders I have tried to thank everyone individually for their purchases throughout the month but inevitably I may have missed a few. Thank you thank you thank you everybody. I hope that each of the individual items live with you for years and bring you much enjoyment.
Alongside these orders was a constant stream of goodwill and support from both people I know and people I have never met. This is easily as staggering as the purchases. So thank you to everyone who has been in touch online or in person with positivity over the past few weeks. You're all just great.
Thanks also to anyone who has ever bought a watch from me or supported me over the past few years. And finally a big thanks to my retailers who have been fantastic to work with. Next time you're looking to buy a gift or something nice for yourself give a local retailer your business and visit Coffeewerk & Press, Indigo & Cloth, the Irish Design Shop or SCP London.
Why are you stopping?
...is one of the questions that keeps popping up. So here's as honest and concise an answer as I can put together at this point in time:
Since 2014 I estimate that I have assembled somewhere in the region of 300 watches. Each one takes hours, it's difficult to quantify exactly how many precisely but somewhere between 4 and 5 per piece. The team I have here is minuscule, it's effectively me with the occasional help of a horologist and the odd intern. By and large NTN is my baby and I have never been able to scale it to a point of employing a full time team.
Just after Christmas 2017 I realised that I haven't actually designed anything in over 2 years, and that was the crux of the decision to draw things to a close. It's time for me to go back to what I believe I am best at, and to explore what being a designer is for me after several years away from it.
...is the next most asked question and the answer is I'm not entirely sure. I will certainly be dedicating a lot of my time to OTHERS (instagram.com/we.are.others), a joint surf/design project with fellow designer Eoin McNally. It has been very rewarding over the past few years working together to design products that are not only good for people but also good for the world. Crossing over design with environmental and social responsibilities is an area I am particularly interested in.
I have one of your products, can I get a new strap and/or get it serviced?
Yes! Contact me in either situation. I will be producing a batch of straps in the coming weeks for people who own one of my watches and I will be putting in place trusted horologists who know how to fully service your timepiece. I will always do everything I can to get you sorted should something arise.
So there it is, a not-so-short explainer of what is happening here. Well done if you've made it this far! Thanks again to everyone for their interest and support over the years. Any questions you can always reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Bye for now,
Ian and Fiadh (the hound)