The Hairspring began in late 2016 with a simple goal: to sift through the very best of the entire watch market to attract and bring closer together a community of thoughtful collectors.

We’ve all had great and dreadful experiences buying and selling watches. In my experience, the more personal an interaction is, the better the result. Since acquiring a humble Speedmaster in the mid-2000s, I became somewhat obsessed in collecting. After following this rabbit-hole and my bank balance to its depths, I came to realize I enjoy the interactions these pieces afford far more than the metal itself. I set out back then to constructively bring together a thoughtful and nuanced community in a small attempt to give some of the experience I’ve had back.

Horology is this bizarre confluence of mechanics, artistry, and design, all of which are fields I’ve loved individually. And they are instruments of financial value which move around. That’s all fun. But if I meditate on the last decade of experience in watches, I am continually interested for the people. Sure there are snobs, but you sniff them out pretty quickly. I forget who I heard this from, it’s not my own, but the watch community has a stronger immune system than most.

Wristwatches afford one the chance to subtly speak to their own values. The small world of those who know pick up on it. Being able to read those values in others is a rare and mediocre superpower at best, but a very amusing one. This is why we select features for outright interest, indifferent to any sort of price-peacocking or appeal to authority. The watch world is full of many dedicated, hard-working, and brilliant women and men who love their craft and their collections. The stories they have to tell live in their work, on our wrists. This niche attracts some very thoughtful and interesting people, I’m here for them and the stories their watches tell.

Erik Gustafson