This month sees the retirement of two old friends; the Derwent range, and the Cherwell range. What with the recent conclusion of our Crowdcube campaign and many changes on the horizon, coupled with the shifting of the season here in Oxfordshire - from the stifling heat of summer to cooler days and falling leaves - it's hard not to feel a little nostalgic.
The Cherwell was our first watch. Inspired by the prestigious university city of Oxford and its meandering waters, the River Cherwell, it was a labour of love and discovery for us. The Derwent was our second; inspired by the beauty of the Lake District and many British design cues. They are two very distinct ranges - opposites in their statures and their characters, but both holding equal places in the heart of the company.
The Lomond, a project very much born in Scotland, came and went in a blaze of glory; selling out within months. And so we find ourselves, as 2019 enters its final few months, with three exciting ranges - the Coniston, the Haskell, and the Morar - available to buy on our website, while several other secret projects develop. The Haskell and the Coniston have arguably become iconic ranges within our history; both continue to ship across the world daily, delighting new and repeat customers with their design, back stories, and their unique personalities. The Morar has received an incredible reception during its pre-order phase - embraced by both the diving and land-loving communities, even before its physical arrival on wrists around the world.
Balancing the retirement of collections alongside ensuring availability of current ranges, whilst introducing new, fresh collections, is a delicate act. With the retirement of two ranges has come the introduction of another - the Morar - and the near completion of a number of secret projects, alongside another new range; one which has been conceived and has evolved due to huge customer demand. These will be released at regular intervals within the next 12-months - one or two perhaps a little sooner than you might think.
While these projects are fine-tuned and polished, we have been working on two further new ranges; investigating places and stories that capture our imaginations, delving into the details, shaping these sparks of inspiration into physical sketches and specs - these watches won't be released for another year to a year and a half. They are worlds apart from one another, both stunningly new and challenging for us, and so incredibly exciting to work on. Meanwhile, we have begun to initiate some ideas for our exclusive Shareholders watch; a timepiece which will be shaped by our collective consciousness, and a symbol of our coming together as a MWC community.
We are perfectionists; solely focused on ensuring that we continue to bring accessible, highly-engineered and beautiful timepieces to our customers, while working on ambitious, diverse projects. Such projects require steep learning curves, all-consuming levels of research and discussion and deliberation and budgeting, and collaboration with carefully selected and managed manufacturing partners. Meanwhile, there's a thriving business to run; maintaining the high standard of customer service that we have set, fulfilling orders, covering advertising, marketing and PR and working with shareholders to grow Marloe Watch Company together.
It's therefore difficult to feel melancholy about the retirement of the Cherwell and the Derwent for too long, what with so many new members of the family clamouring for attention. There simply isn't time. Every project receives the same consideration, care and attention as the first; but now we have 4 years of experience, a freshly expanded shareholders community and budget, and an abundance of fresh ideas in our toolkit. There's no retirement party for these two old friends; no plastic cups of warm sparkling wine, no cluster of signatures in a Hallmark card, no cursory goodbyes. There is, instead, a quiet handshake, a smile, a nod, a handing over of notes to the successors, and a grateful thank you for what they've done for the company.
An equally important and heartfelt thank you is due to all of you who have a Cherwell or a Derwent on your wrist as you read; whether it's a rare Cherwell Blue, a warm Derwent Sundial, a crisp White or an intricate Gauge, it's a true piece of Marloe Watch Company history, and we are grateful that every one of our first two creations has found a home in your lives.
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