The Watches of Roger Smith

Roger Smith is proud to be one of the smallest watchmakers in the world and has become a household name in the luxury timepiece industry. His now infamous critique of the British watchmaking industry wasn’t without merit – his specialty lies in making watches you can’t buy from a counter and only makes around 10 or so a year. They’re unique, one-of-a-kind luxury watches designed to withstand the test of time. In 2014, Smith co-made a Millennium watch that sold at auction for nearly $167,000 USD, a record for the watch type and $30,000 more than the retail price.

In a profile with, Smith said, “I’m certainly proud to be one of the smallest makers in the world,” adding, “Companies tend to announce their annual increase in production as though it was a recognition of doing well, but if I made 20 watches a year I’d know something must have gone down in quality.”

Smith is beloved in a community known for their grit, patience, and pure skill, mainly because every single facet of his watches are made by Smith himself. He shared, “As I get older I realize that my level of interest in watchmaking then was unusual but it’s always been normal to me. He went on, “As a boy I had this obsessive quest to make things perfect. My first model aircraft had glue everywhere, so I kept going until there was no glue visible. So I think I found the right outlet in watchmaking. I would probably be too nervous to approach George [Daniels] for the first time now if he was still around, but then I wanted to prove to myself and to him that I could do it. At that age I didn’t know what else to do.”

So it comes as no surprise that Smith would actively, and eagerly, rebuke the modern watch-making world. “There’s something in my story they understand,” he says, speaking directly of his customers, adding, “craft as a counter to the otherwise frenetic world we live in. Or perhaps they just know that modern watches are all mass-produced and feel as I do that that means they all have something missing.”

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