I’m a fan of pages like Kickstarter. It’s a great podium for a lot of watch related projects which otherwise would not have a worldwide platform. Sure, the things you see there sometimes are a bit immature however often you can find surprisingly well-made and designed products for an attractive price. The watches coming out of these go-fund-me pages are usually aesthetically driven with the majority of the effort poured into the looks rather than the “hidden” elements i.e. movement. Great looking watches driven by mostly Japanese movements. Not that anything is wrong with a Seiko or Miyota movement watch, but let’s be honest, that “Swiss Made” at the bottom of the dial still is a big factor when deciding on a purchase. What if I say that you can find a watch on Kickstarter that is attractive and Swiss Made at the same time? Klynt is such a watch.
The idea of Klynt is very simple; to create a Swiss Made watch with a conception that pays tribute to contemporary horology as well as architecture, arts and other design aspects of life. I had the pleasure of receiving a few of their prototypes for a few weeks and I very much liked what I saw. I’ve been wearing the steel model for a few days now and I’m more than happy with the watch. A hands-on review will come on the Klynt steel in due course so more about that soon. In the meantime, I talked with Bruno (one half of Klynt) to share of few of their thoughts on the project. We have had a few discussions and he seems like a very conscious guy. Has a well-planned business idea and a great view on the industry in general. Here’s what he told us;
Thank you for taking the time to answer some of our questions, Bruno. I hope this will allow our users to have a better view on the brand and what you guys are trying to achieve with it.
We have to start the interview with the following question:
Where does the idea/desire of creating a watch brand come from? Especially that this is already your 2nd watch project.
Our fascination for fine watchmaking dates from our youth. Raised in Geneva, we’ve been introduced to Horlogerie Suisse early on, and our passion for Haute Horlogerie, technicity and micromechanics continuously grew until we met in Engineer School.
Clément, whose grandfather was a carpenter, founded Koppo, creating watches featuring wood and I learned the basics of mechanical movements, servicing and complications with a watchmaker from my family. When our paths crossed again in Geneva in 2015, KLYNT was born.
What does the logo symbolize?
People are creative and see different things, that’s the beauty of KLYNT. For us the logo represents a road leading to an open gate, as an invitation for people to enter into fine and creative Watchmaking. But you can also imagine a sunrise of above a mountain, or … I will let you continue 😉
KLYNT name was chosen after an artist, Hilma af KLINT. She was a pioneer of modern art, who freed herself from the realistic painting codes to truly express her passion. At KLYNT we consider mechanical watchmaking an art, and that the technicality of the watches should be at the center of their design.
Who or what were the inspiration during your designing process?
We have always been deeply attracted to Haute Horlogerie, for they are really pushing this concept of technicality in the design. We admire brands like Armin Strom, Hautlence, Christophe Claret, MB&F… that do not compromise to fit into classic watchmaking codes. Architectural lines, incredible depth, transparency & light reflection, combination of finishing techniques are common traits to all the great watchmakers we cherish, and that we wanted to blend into our Elegance Contemporaine collection.
Why is it so important for you to emphasize contemporary watchmaking?
The concept of Horlogerie Contemporaine is very important to us: Adopting a modern distribution model enables us to be creative on the design and to collaborate with the best partners in Switzerland to develop the highest quality timepieces. And the result is this spectacular collection that KLYNT offers at an incredible value.
You’ve shown the watch to a number of watchmaking geniuses from Max Büsser to Philippe Dufour. What did you bring home from these meetings?
Indeed, being in Geneva offers many opportunities to meet great watchmakers an SIHH gathered a lot of them! Putting the product in their hands was a real test, for they are used to handle invaluable timepieces, but all of them were impressed by the quality and finishing level reached for this value.
We have to address the elephant in the room; the design draws similarity to some haute horlogerie watches, especially from Hautlence. When we posted a photo of Klynt on our IG feed we got a few derogatory comments about it. How would you explain the similarity to these people?
We are extremely proud to be compared to Haute Horlogerie brands, it’s the best evidence that our objective to create a refined and technical timepiece is a success! Yet there is no confusion possible with KLYNT Genève, neither on the product, nor on the value J
Thank you for your time and good luck!
I can say that this watch is well worth the 990 CHF – the minimum amount it costs you to become a backer and take home a timepiece. A Swiss Made automatic watch from Genéve with a great design, amazing quality on the finishing and tremendous wrist presence. You will surely find the one you like the best out of the fours versions they are offering; steel, gold, gold & black, full black. There was not one soul that saw Klynt on my wrist that did not asked me what it was. So I took it off, handed to them and asked them if they liked it. Everybody was positive until I told them the price. Then they looked surprised. This is the effect Klynt had on my friends and colleagues who took a glance of it.
Is the look of the watch familiar to you? Sure, it is as it pays homage to some of the greats in contemporary watchmaking. As Bruno said it, Klynt attempts to walk the same path as haute horlogerie brands walk but in a way that it is more accessible for the average watch lovers. Everything is coming from something. We all inspire others and we see inspiration in other people, things, ideas and so on. Only time will tell whether they succeed or they have to change their take on the industry. I think quality timepieces like Klynt has a place in the watch world. I, for one, am rooting for them.
For more info on Klynt visit their website by clicking here.