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[INSIDE STORY] George Bamford on Customizing Rolexes and Following Your Art

Bamford Watch Department doesn’t accept things at face value. As the first company to undertake the anything-is-possible customization of luxury sports watches like Rolex, its mission is to create something that will truly stand the test of time. To mark its collaboration with Donald  we asked founder George Bamford to share what makes the brand tick…

What’s one thing the internet doesn’t know about Bamford Watch Department? One thing is the size of my team. I have over 25 people worldwide who truly demonstrate that you are only as good as those around you.

How did the collaboration with Donald come together and what excited you about the opportunity to collaborate with him? I have always wanted to work with Story and doing this Donald collaboration has been perfect to connect us. With the art season upon us it is a great time and I think Donald’s art looks amazing on the dial. It is incredible to be able to combine his passion with mine and create a unique timepiece.

What was the process of making the watch? The heart of the process is always design and Donald definitely brought the heart and love with his design on the dial. Combined with our signature military grade titanium matte black coating on this Rolex Datejust and specifically customised white hand and red second hand to match, this uniquely created timepiece is definitely a creation from the heart, from all sides. It has taken 6-8 weeks to create and our in-house watchmakers expertly enable the customization process.

What does it mean to you to Follow Your Art?

‘Your Art’ can be anything you are passionate about. My passion, from a young age has been watches. I started collecting watches in 1992 – my first ever watch was a Breitling Navitimer with a domed glass. I loved it and it ignited my love for watches. I started collecting Breitlings, Omegas, Datejusts and simple Rolexes. It was from this that I discovered a market for customizing watches and Bamford Watch Department was started.

What items can be found on you at all times? I always have a little bit of ribbon on me. 

What’s the last thing you took a photo of? One of our watches for Instagram. I personally maintain our Instagram page as I get inspired by taking photos of great watches and it is always a pleasure to do.

When’s the last time you were inspired, by what? I think you get inspired every day just by the world around you. I can be walking the streets of London and the colour combinations on a car I see can inspire me. It can be the smallest thing but it only takes that small thing to spark a huge thing.