Share on:

Talking Time | Koo Wai Mun’s collection of watches with unusual designs

A fan of innovation, the IT director has equally creative ways of expressing his horological passion.

BOLDNESS, NOT BRANDS

“People think that I go only for independent brands, but I don’t go for specific brands. A brand catches my attention if its work is creative. One example is (independent Russian watchmaker) Konstantin Chaykin. He launched his Joker watch at Baselworld last year, and it sold out in days. I later commissioned him to create a unique piece inspired by mime artists, instead of the villain in the Batman movies. Mine has a monochromatic palette, and the eyes have teardrop-shaped, instead of round, pupils. Its caseback bears a Charlie Chaplin quote: ‘A day without laughter is a day wasted.’”

(RELATED: Talking Time: Nelson Lee, chef of digital & marketing at Jeweluxe International, can’t get enough of mechanical timepieces)

 

MY RESTRICTIONS ON WATCH-SHOPPING

“I’m particular about two things. Firstly, I don’t sell watches. Even if my tastes change, I will still try to keep them. Secondly, I don’t buy preowned watches because I’m a hygiene freak. Watches touch your skin when worn; they’re quite personal. I’d go as far as NOS (new old stock), which have not been worn.”

 

ODES TO MY LOVES

“Aside from its interesting case, articulated lugs and polishing, I like the De Bethune DB28 Steel Wheels’ skeletonisation and sapphire hour hand. I actually wrote a poem about it and posted it on Instagram (@watchinery). I write poems because I like playing with words. Years ago, I wrote a song for my wife after I nearly got into an accident while driving. It made me realise there were many things I wanted to tell her, so I wrote the song, recorded it, and gave it to her for her birthday.”

 

ON CONSIDERING STARTING HIS OWN BRAND

“I’ve thought about creating my own watch brand. I conceptualised a watch – it would have jumping hours, a regular minutes hand and a seconds disc – and engaged a product designer to help me design it. But I dropped the idea after discussing it with many people. I would want to create a high-end watch that would cost a lot to produce, and it would not be easy for a new Singaporean brand to sell a watch at a haute-horlogerie price.”

 

MY FAVOURITE WATCHES

  • 01 De Bethune DB28 Steel Wheels in titanium

(RELATED: Talking Time: Why banker Tom Chng founded the Singapore Watch Club)

PeakMonogram