Up close with globetrotter and luxury timepiece influencer, Watch Anish.
He’s currently followed by 1.6 million watch enthusiasts and instagrammers the world over. A former fashion consultant with a penchant for luxe sartorial silhouettes and gentlemanly pursuits, this influencer is currently on the top of his game. The man in question is none other than watch collector and educator, Anish Blatt aka Watch Anish.
Amidst Anish’s hectic schedule during his recent stop in Singapore to attend a Montblanc and Louis Moinet event, COVERED Asia managed to catch up with the jet-setter at his Fullerton Bay Hotel suite for a quick chat and mandatory welcome drinks.
A Moment with Anish Blatt in Singapore
“Actually, if you think about it, you can write an article, but there may be a language barrier; not everyone speaks English. But if you have a picture with no text on it, it becomes universal.” – Anish Blatt, WatchAnish.com
COVERED: So how many times have you been to Singapore?
ANISH: Singapore, I’ve been here like 4 times now.
COVERED: Is this the first time you’re working with a watch brand (Montblanc and Louis Moinet) in Singapore?
ANISH: Actually, we were invited here in the early days when we just started for discussions, and our tickets and accommodation were paid for then, but from a commercial stand point however, yes this is the first time we are working with a watch brand in Singapore. What is interesting though, is I think now or within the last 18 months, brands are really beginning to embrace digital and social media as such a influential form of communication now, versus other things they have been used to before. Nowadays they can’t really ignore it, and they have to work with whoever is the best in that field. We are lucky to be part of that pool of publications.
How did Watch Anish Happen?
COVERED: So how did you get started? Did it stem from your love of watches or did it just, happen?
ANISH: Yeah of course, I’ve been collecting watches for 17 years. I’m 35 this year, and I’ve been building my knowledge. I am self-taught; learning as much as I can about everything. I didn’t stick to just one type, like vintage or just one brand. I am very eclectic. I like watches, fashion, art, architecture and other different things. I wanted to do something that combines all of that. That’s how the idea of this blog started out. When Instagram came along, I thought that’s cool, let’s get on Instagram. Let’s create my own content instead of just taking stuff off the internet. Let’s try and create cooler images and videos. Actually, if you think about it, you can write an article, but there may be a language barrier; not everyone speaks English. But if you have a picture with no text on it, it becomes universal.
On Watch Designs Today. Avante-Garde or Traditional?
COVERED: So today as you know, there are so many new cult brands like Maximilian Busser and Friends (MB&F). Even from Singapore there is Azimuth with their avant-garde timepiece designs. On the other hand you have Audemars Piguet (AP) that has influenced the entire world with their octagonal faces. Now everyone’s following that design, and it seems to be the watch to have.
COVERED: Tell us, for you personally, where do you stand in that division between traditional movement and design, versus the new fashionable watches.
ANISH: To be honest it’s a little bit of both. I have very broad tastes like that. I wear ripped jeans and stuff today but tonight I’ll wear a tux. It depends on my mood. I love vintage and vintage movements, pocket watch movements without complications, slim, ultra slim tuxedo kinda style watches, yet at the same time, I like the big Richard Mille, and MB&F contemporary watch making as well. I guess I appreciate that independent manufacturers take bigger risks, the way they put things together, and that they’re much more adventurous on how they design and want to tell the time in an interesting way. Because of that, I admire them.
ANISH: Yet there is always the lure of a brand like AP, because they’ve been around for so long. It’s a very iconic design to have on your wrist, like how someone could be sitting on top of Marina Bay Sands, and you can still see that he’s wearing a Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Schumacher on his wrist because its such an iconic design. For 40 years, you know that an octagonal bezel with those screws makes an AP. And people buy it because of that because they know that other people can recognize it and that is a big reason to why people buy things.
ANISH: You can talk all day about the movement and finishing, or some old guy in Switzerland polishing like bits of metal till his hands fall off, but the big reason is its status, its emotional value, and the truth is that people want to celebrate or show off about their successes. That is why people buy expensive things. That being said, there’s not anything wrong with that; it is just human nature. So I don’t think there’s a right or wrong answer. My stance is that I buy across the board; I buy vintage, classic, modern and outrageous kind of avante garde as well.
What’s Next For Watch Anish?
COVERED: So what’s next in the plans for you? A collaboration perhaps?
ANISH: I guess the plan for the future is to grow what we’re doing, and to push the envelope on the quality and creativity of the content that we create. Because when you start doing something and you do it well, then okay it’s good, but you have to keep pushing, and you have to keep doing more and explore doing other different stuff because firstly, it gets boring, and secondly, because you did something good, others will copy you, and then it becomes so saturated, you’ll need to keep pushing yourself forward.
ANISH: So that for us is the key thing; moving into new markets, territories and locations that people haven’t been to or explored yet – this is something else we’re looking to do. That being said, there are still a few big projects that we are working on, and then there is the idea of moving into a retail space online and physical kinds of locations as well – different types of products though, not watches. I don’t want to be a watch retailer, and I’m not trying to be one – I couldn’t handle the headache to be honest.
COVERED: A jewellery line of sorts perhaps?
ANISH: We do have Watch Anish Bracelets available online for sale already, though not anything super high end. It’s just like stuff you’d wear on the beach, very casual stuff. Basically what we’re developing behind the scenes is a product range which in my head, will eventually evolve into a proper lifestyle brand. It’s not going to be a brand that does one type of product like kitchenware or furniture, but more of a bit of everything. Like fashion, interior design or car modifications. I don’t know yet but the idea is to do select, and limited production numbers of a product in a really cool way. For me, I always look at branding before I look at it commercially. So it will be long term rather than something short term.