How did the pleasure of function become central?

Singer Reimagined’s design story

“I never worked to reach a level, but I always fought to do what I love. What makes me proud today is having my brand to continue doing what I love: creating.”

This is the answer of Marco Borraccino, CEO of Singer Reimagined, when he explained the design of his watches.

Marco Borracino Singer Reimagined

We are lucky, as enthusiasts, to be in direct contact with the final product. We don’t have to endure the moments of doubt and research that all designers have to go through to bring their ideas to life in an object.

We wanted to understand Singer Reimagined’s design because it’s one of the ways we can capture the soul of the brand.

How did Marco go from an idea to a finished product?

It was important not to forget your coat that day. The rain made us put our heads in our shoulders and hurry up. In addition to the excitement, the weather was rushing us. Once past the entrance, you enter the elevator and end up on the fifth floor. Despite the gray clouds and the driving rain, the large windows surrounding the offices make the space bright, all this on a relaxing musical background. We feel good and after a good coffee, we are in the best dispositions to accomplish our quest. Let the adventure begin!

Our encounters, experiences, tastes and passions shape what we produce. If you look at the Track1 or Flytrack, you’ll see only watches. Now, I see a condensed love for music, cars and iconic watches from the 60s and 70s. But I see it because Marco shared his past with us.

From an early age, music has played an important role in his life. It punctuates his days and its rhythm helps him to surf between his ideas. Did he imagined that it would allow him to create a watch brand? What is certain is that the idea had never crossed his mind. And yet, it is what brought him to meet Rob Dickinson, singer and member of the band Catherine Wheel. But music is not the only thing that brought them together, cars and mechanics are also part of their lives as Rob restores and makes old Porsches reliable. It was enough for Marco to send him an email. A bottle to the sea to which he did not expected necessarily a return. If you want to know the rest of their story, I let you listen or listen again to the podcast we recorded with Marco (only in french).

Marco Borraccino

Marco Borraccino

Singer Reimagined

Aujourd'hui, nous avons le plaisir de vous présenter Marco Borraccino, le co-fondateur de la marque Singer Reimagined. Ce designer va revenir sur sa carrière et vous raconter son aventure entrepreneuriale.

To create, Marco needs a background of music, to be alone, to have his pen and notebook. A moment of disconnection during which he travels in his mind trying to give life to what he has in his head.

You may have been in that situation where you want to express something, but it doesn’t come out on its own. You have to go looking for it. The more you test, the darker your pages get and the more your idea comes to life. You draw its boundaries, you discover what characterizes it, and it gradually leaves your mind to settle on paper. If this period can be laborious, an event can trigger a click and then everything comes by itself. A real moment of pleasure when you succeed in capturing your idea.

As far as Marco is concerned, it is his 1972 Autavia that guided him. This Heuer chrono on his wrist puts him on the track. He wanted to take up the codes of these iconic watches of the 60s and 70s by refining them and making them more ergonomic. This is when the warm-up period begins. His bic will try, again and again, to give a face to his idea. The barrel shape and its curves, already present on the Autavia, allowed him to guide his pen and refine his idea. This period can take him an hour or a week, after which the lines become volumes when he transcribes them on a 3D software to face the technical constraints.

These few lines may allow you to understand the complexity of the work required to create a watch. It’s even more complicated when you don’t have an existing collection to guide you. When Marco designed the first Singer Reimagined watch, he had to create a watch that embodied the emerging brand. A real construction site during which the foundations of the brand must be laid so that the rest of the building, in which the different collections will be housed, is as stable and clear as possible.

In addition to these challenges, there are also the details. We can tend to forget them, because when we look at the watch, we see them but without paying much attention. For example, to arrive at this peripheral display of the hour and minutes, Marco was inspired by the bezels of the chronos. The angle of the curved glass is the same as the hour and minute disc. Creating a trompe-l’oeil, because when you look at the watch, you can have the impression that they are a bezel and that the central chrono indicates the time.

Singer Reimagined Track1 Noir
Singer Reimagined Track1 Bleu

It is all these small details that make the beauty of the piece. There is also the choice of the push buttons’ position. Positioned at 10 and 2 o’clock, it is easier to use the chrono with it in the hand as well as on the wrist.

The function was peripheral in the other chronos, it becomes central for Marco.

Changing the priorities in the watch

The brand isn’t called Singer Reimagined for nothing. The parallel between Rob’s work with Singer and the Track1 example gave me a glimpse into the soul of the brand.

A Singer Porsche, it has been made reliable so that the pleasure of driving it is no longer interrupted by mechanical problems. For a Singer Reimagined watch, such as the Track1 with its chronograph, the function is placed at the center so that the pleasure of using it is as complete as possible. Your pleasure in using it is no longer interrupted by a lack of readability.

Singer Reimagined therefore puts its function back at the heart of the watch.

A few lines earlier, I told you that our creations are shaped by our experiences, our tastes and our passions. And if Marco managed to create this DNA for his brand, it’s thanks to his love for music, his friendship with Rob but also thanks to his many trips to California to immerse himself into Singer. Rob’s desire with Singer for cars was reimagined by Marco for watches.

This change of priority in the watch required a complete reworking of the movement. Work that has been taken care of by Agenhor, but have a little more patience on this subject.

Thinking outside the box, the brand was awarded the Chronograph Award at the 2018 GPHG.

Now that you have been able to touch the DNA of the brand, I let you imagine the future…

At Singer Reimagined, design is not just about aesthetics, but about changing priorities and creating a new generation of watches.

After the chronograph, what function would you tackle?