Sometimes, there’s a brand effort that comes together, hitting all the right buzzwords that resonate in the empty cavern where my soul used to be. Today, that brand is Monsoon, a kickstarter project that wants to make a simplistic watch for urban bicyclists.
I’m going to start by naming buzzwords. “Simplicity, quality, elegance, and usefulness” are words used in the email I received, and they’re all true here. What we have is a watch with large dial, long indices surrounded by a minute track. The seconds hand touches the dots that make the minute track, the minute marker stops just short of it, and the hour hand kisses the numerals. Honestly, the hand length is both useful, and elegant. Thank you, MacMillan.
MacMillan is named for Kirkpatrick MacMillan, the inventor of the first pedal-driven bicycle. The indices for the hour markers look somewhat similar to the spokes of MacMillan’s wheels on his velocipede. Many brands try to claim a sense of history, whether by reviving a dormant brand name, or claiming an inventor’s name to whom they have no relation. Here, they’ve chosen their favorite hobby of biking, and claimed the name out of both establishing the sense of history, and recognizing where it comes from. Also, naming products and brands is hard. I feel for you, brands.
The two gents behind MacMillan are Antoine and Sébastien, who live in London, but both worked in Switzerland. Antoine designed luxury fashion accessories, and studied the luxury watch market while over Switzerland. When he returned to London, he decided that he had a passion to design a watch. Sure, it’s a accessory, but it’s one with sentimental value, and he really liked the Bauhaus school of design, and was inspired by it when putting together the MacMillan watch.
For your cold hard Francs, you get a 40mm stainless steel case, which was custom tooled (note the bevels on the lugs), a knurled crown, similar to the knurling you might find on a fixie bicycle, a domed mineral glass crystal, applied chapter markers, and lume. All of the models come with a 20mm strap, and a Miyota quartz movement. For the model with a polished stainless finish, you get a black sunray dial and black alligator pattern strap. For the gold PVD model, you get a black sunray dial with smooth black leather strap. For the truly fashion aware, there’s also a white textured dial in polished stainless case, on brown leather strap. In all cases, the date wheel matches the color of the dial, and the applied indices at 12,3,6,9 match the color of the case. It’s gonna set you back $146 Francs or about $148 USD for a single watch, but must we ask, at what price, fashion? MacMillan Watches on Kickstarter