About this project
Thank you, I’m so grateful for your support. Watch the video to learn what Schmutz is all about. For details, read below. And please let me know if you have any questions.
When I first envisioned the concept of Schmutz, I imagined a hand-painted timepiece that was distinctive, aesthetically pleasing, and affordable. Hand-painted dials was the standard 150 years ago. It was that same artistry that my great, great grandmother, Rosetta Schmutz studied while living in La Chaux De Fonds, Switzerland. That artistry is now rare and expensive. Today, a professionally hand-painted timepiece crafted by a trained enamel artist would cost thousands of dollars. Schmutz is committed to creating unique, hand-crafted timepieces, featuring the work of talented, contemporary artists, that are affordable, and accessible for everyone.
No two Schmutz watches are alike. Each hand-painted timepiece is a collaboration between artists, leather craftsman, machinists, watchmakers, and YOU! I want to be sure I will create something you will love, so you'll be able to join in during the creation process. You'll choose the casing, strap color, and accent color. You'll even select the artist to craft your dial.
Only the highest quality parts available are used in Schmutz timepieces.
After months of designing and crafting prototypes, I’m ready to take Schmutz to the next level. With your funding, I will be ordering custom Swiss movements, with more room between the hands and dials for the artists to have space for varying textures, materials and paints. I will also be placing a large order of cases, straps, and deployment clasps; in other words, everything I need to create these beautiful timepieces.
REWARDS -the following is a break-down of what you'll get for each rewards package.
- Temporary Schmutz tattoo! - I drew these by hand.
- 5 x 7 print - here you'll receive one of four Original Artist's Prints. In addition, each Basic Schmutz Watch will also come with a choice of one of these prints. The image below shows the options currently available. Ready for matting and framing!
- Basic Schmutz Watch - each timepiece is hand-painted using an acrylic/enamel based paint. It will have the logo mark on the upper half of the dial and "Schmutz" on the lower half. You will also have the option to choose an accent color (for the "Schmutz" wording). With each purchase of the Basic Schmutz Watch you will receive the temporary Schmutz tattoo, your choice of strap, case, and your choice of an Original Artist Print.
- We now have WOOD DIALS! We will be offering the Basic Schmutz Watch with engraved Cherry Wood.
- Commissioned Schmutz Watch - this timepiece will be commissioned by you! You will have the option of choosing which artist crafts your watch. This purchase will include the Commissioned Schmutz Watch, the Temporary Schmutz Tattoo, your choice of the strap and case, and a print of YOUR commissioned timepiece.
For this first round of watches, I have carefully chosen each artist for their unique style and medium to hand-paint each dial. Each timepiece will be completely unique. Remember, choosing an artist is similar to commissioning a piece of art. Choose an artist whose style you love.
As Schmutz grows I will be adding more exceptional artists.
Ellie creates abstracted imagery that is fundamentally tied to her exploration of her ancestry. Raised in Japan, Ellie began to foster an interest in art as drawing was a common part of Japanese youth culture. As Ellie moved through college she began to discover the relevance of ancestral ties evident in her creative process. As part of that process Ellie recycles found materials, a tradition she discovered was common to her samurai great grandfather.
RUATOTO HENRY -
I met Rua when I was studying with a watchkmaker in New Zealand. Born and raised on the small island of Rarotonga, Rua is a self-trained sketch artist. His creations are a blend of his Rarotongan heritage and traditional Maori or Moko designs. All of Rua's designs will be engraved on Cherry wood and be completely one of a kind.
Skye's versatile style is shown through her hand-painted, hand-stitched dials. Recently graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Houston, Skye works predominately in the medium of painting, but occasionally uses fiber for added texture and interest. She uses handmade mulberry paper, thread, and watercolor paints for her dials.
"America is a melting pot of race, culture, ideas and styles. I am personally immersed in this heterogeneity. When relating my ancestry to others, I often explain that I am 1/32 Iroquois and that one of my forebears was a tribal chief. And yet, what I rarely share is that my knowledge of this distant heritage ends there. My artwork is a manifestation of my recent attempts to understand this past and explore my inclination toward Native American traditions. By remixing and adding native patterns over one another in transparent layers and using pixelated images from Navajo rugs, I am endeavoring to make sense of a culture I longingly desire to be a part of; while acknowledging that though that which is lost in time, that heritage can still express itself through patterns of its visual art. I use paints and collaging processes to explore these ideas while recognizing that it is difficult to find the purity of any culture in today's global generation"
Featured Artist: Erin Berrett
Schmutz is proud to collaborate with award winning artist Erin Berrett. Erin’s work is displayed with other internationally accomplished artists at the J. Willott Gallery in Palm Desert, CA, and Williams Fine Art in Salt Lake City, Utah. A graduate of the University of Utah with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, Erin will be doing a limited series of 10 pieces for this first project...with more to come as Schmutz continues to grow (with your help)! For this series she will be focusing on everyday, commonplace items. Here is Erin's statement on her work -
“The paradox of the term 'still life' inspires me. There's a fundamental tension between the still and the life, isn't there? That's what I try to capture when I paint. To me, objects are never completely motionless, or emotionless for that matter. They tremble. They vibrate. And those vibrations are produced not only by the construction of the object, but the external forces exerted on it --- the angle of the light, for instance, and the perspective of the viewer. What's a good painting to me? It's hard to know, but I'll tell you this: when the object comes alive, and the environment, the viewer and I all participate to make that happen - that's success to me."
For each piece, Erin uses acrylic gesso (3 layers, sanded fine), oil paint, liquin medium, Gamsol and Soluvar.
I am confident in the quality of each Schmutz time piece. While I'm still creating my official warranty and certificate of authenticity (which will be included with your watch) - for all my kickstarter founders I will replace batteries for free for the first year (starting when you receive the watch), I will also replace movement for free for up to 3 years.
Each strap is crafted, dyed, and hand-stitched by Mark, our leather craftsman and owner of Summit Creek Dry Goods. Mark specializes in designing functional, yet aesthetically pleasing, straps. Each finished product is a result of a desire to find balance between function and form.
Mark hand cuts the watch straps from a hide of natural, vegetable-tanned leather, and dyes them with custom colors. The straps are then edged and hand stitched with waxed linen thread. The final step is a waxing and buffing to protect the leather and give it a beautiful finish.
You will have your choice of strap color when the project concludes. (I also have plans to add 2 more colors - black & caramel)
Each strap will come with a deployment clasp (sometimes known as a butterfly clasp). They are solid stainless steel and have a polished finish. Here are some reasons why I chose to use deployment claps as opposed to the traditional buckle.
- durability - bending the straps back and forth to fit the buckle wears the leather down faster, causing cracks and tears. Once the clasp is fitted to your wrist - adjustments are minimal and the strap's life is dramatically lengthened.
- comfort - deployment clasps have a bar that conforms to the wrist (just like the bottom of the Schmutz Watch case).
- design - deployment clasps showcase the beauty of the leather grain in a way that a buckle cannot. And design is an important aspect of each Schmutz timepiece.
- case - brushed stainless steel or black PVD coating (physical vapor deposition)
- scratch resistant sapphire crystals
- custom swiss quartz movements
- hand-crafted leather straps (20 mm in width)
- polished stainless steel butterfly clasps
- 30 meters water resistance
- hand-painted dials
I would like to continue to expand upon the concept of Schmutz. In the future, I plan to have each step of the Schmutz watch manufacturing process take place here in the US. I have plans for more art based watch designs as well as other timepiece accessories. In the works is a unique packaging concept for each Schmutz watch. While this is still in the design phase, I plan on patenting the design and (depending on funding) offering it to you as soon as possible!
Risks and challenges
I've been carefully planning this launch for quite a while now - however, with a project of this scale that depends so heavily on the combined efforts of so many individuals...things can still go wrong. There could be manufacturing delays with the movements, cases, or leather straps. There could be delays or changes in regards to the artwork and artists as well. While none of these risks are likely, I will continue to maintain an open line of communication throughout the whole process. As mentioned in the video, I have a strong connection to my heritage through Rosetta Schmutz and hope to honor that connection by running my business with integrity and creating the highest quality watches possible.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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