New Perspectives on Japanese Watchmaking with MINASE
"Made in Japan" is so often a synonym for quality craftsmanship that sometimes one can forget just what it really means, and why it is still capable of commanding the world's respect. Japanese watchmakers MINASE offer the chance to understand those words in an instant, their unassuming factory in Akita prefecture takes its name from the village of Minase, a village so small that it would be absorbed into neighboring towns in 2005, but nonetheless it is a source of pride that such a place could be a self-contained home to a world-class watch brand. The MINASE story starts in 1963 where the factory that would become the brand began by making the fine drills used to install a watch's crown, and from this first drill bit they slowly expanded their range of precision equipment that set the industry standard, until in 2005 they made the jump from supplier to maker.
Building on their own experience making the tools of the trade positioned MINASE perfectly to make the watch of a true craftsmen's dream, the factory having effectively worked up to making a watch from not just its parts and components but the very tools used in their construction, to the in-house Sallaz polishing techniques that completes the process. Not bound by anyone else's specifications leads to a watch with real character, in which, taking their lead from Japanaese wooden mosaic kogei tradition, each and every part of the watch can be removed and repaired if required. This ensures that the watch is capable of not just repair but complete restoration right down to every last screw.
Symbolic of MINASE's approach to design is the Five Windows model, a timepiece that adds a further five windows to the pre-existing glass face of the watch. These windows are positioned along the side of the piece and on the back so that the bold mechanical movement is clearly visible from all angles, and Minase's absolute precision in watchmaking laid bare to enjoy. Building on its ongoing presence at and collaborations with Nihombashi Mitsukoshi, now comes the chance to have one of the Five Windows made to your own specifications at a special fair. No matter your penchant for precious metals and fine leathers, rest assured that MINASE is prepared to rise to the challenge and demonstrate exactly what "made in Japan" quality means.
Top: Exclusive collaboration for Nihombashi Mitsukoshi featuring the iconic Magokoro statue framed in 18K gold.
Bottom: Customers can select their own combination of metals for the watch itself, as well as the leather for the strap right down to the colour of the stitching.
MINASE Five Windows Custom Order Fair
March 30th to April 12th
Nihombashi Mitsukoshi Main Store 6F, Watch Salon