Our Story

Origin is the begining of something, the first stage of existence, the root.  Origin Watch Company originated in 2014 with the goal of building historical, high quality fully mechanical timepieces.

 
 
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Inspiration

We believe that everything old is new again.  The designs of our timepieces originate from watches that are considered original, timeless, classic, and vintage.  Our passion and horological inspiration comes from the classic timepieces built by US and Swiss manufacturers from the late 1800s and into the middle of 20th century.  It was an era of rising industrial watch production, invention and adoption of a wristwatch, advancements in precision and reliability of mechanical movements, tested in the battlefields of two World Wars.  We conduct extensive research on timepieces of the past to create new wrist instruments that have a long life of service.

A fine watch itself is of course a compact precision mechanism with parts miraculously small and fashioned by craftsmen with incredible accuracy
— How a Watch Works, Hamilton Watch Company, 1949

History

In the late 1800s the United States was a leader in mechanical watchmaking as US companies developed new manufacturing methods to meet high consumer demand.  By the middle of the 20th century, the Swiss adopted US machinery and many manufacturing techniques.  When the quartz revolution shifted consumer demand from mechanical watches to the disposable battery-powered and electronic timepieces, the Swiss evolved its watchmaking industry to that of manufacturing luxury timepieces.  The art of watchmaking quickly vanished in the United States when companies like Waltham, Elgin, Hamilton either went out of business or were sold to foreign investors.

Today, it is extremely difficult to source US made components and economically build mechanical timepieces on US soil.  Asian companies produce the largest percentage of watches and watch components for Swiss and other brands to meet global demand. 

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 Waltham Type A11 - Inspiration for our Vintage Field Watch

Waltham Type A11 - Inspiration for our Vintage Field Watch

What we do now

While we do not manufacture watch components in-house or have a source for US made parts, we design, assemble, calibrate and test in our workshop in Memphis, TN. Building watches from high grade components manufactured overseas and bypassing the traditional wholesaler and distributor network allows us to be kind to your wallet and offer our timepieces for hundreds, if not thousands, less than a typical luxury watch brand.

We use only high quality components to build our watches; 316L stainless steel for our cases and sapphire glass with anti-reflective coating for our crystals.  Our movements are from two of the most reputable companies in the industry, ETA and Sea-Gull.  Our leather straps are of the highest quality, sourced from a USA manufacturer or custom handcrafted in our workshop from vintage military or sports equipment leather.  In the age of digital wearable tech, silicon batteries and computer run assembly lines, we go back to the origins of watchmaking - gears, springs, wheels, screws, jewels, crystals and leather - all assembled, finished, and tested one by one, by hand in our workshop.  

Where we are going

Boutique manufacturing of watches in the US is taking place and we want to support this trend.  Our long-term goal is to bring the manufacturing of our watch components to the US.  We will strive to continuously increase the percentage of US made parts.  We will search for and expirement with the US suppliers in producing cases, crystals, dials, and straps.


 At the bench, assembly and testing of Vintage Field Watch 2nd Edition

At the bench, assembly and testing of Vintage Field Watch 2nd Edition

Founder

Origin Watch Co. (OWC) is the brain child of Dennis Shirokov, a self-taught watchmaker, who started Origin Leather (Strapped In Time) to design and hand craft custom leather watch straps from vintage military and sports equipment.  His passion for mechanical watches led him to tinkering with his own collection of mechanical watches and eventually to building his own timepieces.  Our first edition release is the Vintage Field Watch.  OWC has a goal of expanding our line of watches to include historical trench, railroad, pilot and marine themed watches.


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